Broadsign again was sporting the largest booth at the show, a two-story monster equipped with an upstairs conference room and leather couches.
|LG's booth offerings continued to stake the company as one of the leaders in digital signage display technology.|
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|Diversified Media Group Diversified Media Group, the industry's pre-eminent managed network provider, offers full-service design, engineering and managing capabilities for digital signage, IPTV, 2-way satellite and disaster recovery.|
Symon's new all-in-one LobbyView product was demonstrated using three portrait-oriented screens.
The copy displayed on the side of the Advantech Corp. booth read "Best Performance, Reliability and Manageability" and that's what the representatives of Advantech claim to provide. Traditional signage and digital displays intricately combined at the booth to demonstrate how Advantech's ePlatform services can be utilized to give retail clients the most efficient and effective self-service solution available. The booth was alive with diagrams of retail self-service applications, as well as examples of how Advantech RISC-based and x86-based players dramatically enable in-store promotion and integrated point-of-sale displays.
It was difficult to miss the AlivePromo booth with the giant waterfall that drops water in the shape of letters, numbers and symbols. According to Matt Rogers, director of marketing and communications for AlivePromo, the waterfall was just a symbol of what the company can do when it comes to digital signage applications.
"This is what AlivePromo does: AlivePromo specializes in these custom-tailored solutions where we can do some pretty high-end stuff," he said. "This is just one example of what we can do."
Audience measurement is everything in the world of advertising – that was the message at the booth shared by Capital Networks Limited and CognoVision Solutions Inc. The two companies were showing off their new audience measurement solution, which can not only count the number of individuals viewing a digital sign, but also identify the age and gender of each viewer and target advertising specifically to them.
"In a retail environment, a lot of store owners, mall owners and so on, target ads or sell ads to the public," said Faizal Javer, the director of operations for CognoVision. "What we are able to do is capture audience metrics."
The ET Media booth was also abuzz with activity. A provider of embedded media software and a media system solution provider, ET Media grew its business offerings by maintaining an employee base of expert professionals. A banner over the booth proudly displayed the company's name in two different languages, and digital displays were constantly showing examples of how ET Media's solutions have been utilized in the past.
There were several digital signs on display at the crowded Hy-Tek booth. One interactive display invited the viewer to type their name via an interactive keyboard shown on the screen. Hy-Tek is known for manufacturing its Tek Panel line of large LCD computers with built in HDTV. With screen sizes up to 46" inches and built-in computers with Pentium processors, these digital displays are all-in-one solutions, able to handle high resolution graphics and multimedia presentations without the need of a separate computer.
The Microspace booth was vast and the company says its services are even vaster. Specializing in providing broadcast video, data and audio satellite services for business applications, Microspace bases its services on its high-speed video, data and audio broadcasting technology, which the company calls "Velocity". There at the booth, there were digital displays pointing in virtually every direction, all alive with high-speed, high-action video that plays crisply and clearly.
Technology. Expertise. Execution. Those were the promises made at the Reflect Systems booth. The digital signage company prides itself in its ability to help its clients launch and manage digital signage networks by focusing on three key areas: content strategy, screen placement and technology. The company uses its digital signage software, ReflectView, to do just that.
At the RichSource USA booth, managing director Wen Hong was actively showing attendees how his company has specialized in providing networked digital signage solutions in Hong Kong and is now bringing those solutions to the U.S. market.
"We call ourselves a total solutions partner for anybody in the digital signage industry," Hong said. "As you walk around this expo, you can tell: they're either in hardware, software or they're integrators. Or screenmakers. Or content guys. Nobody really is a solutions company: we are trying to come into the US market differently."
At the Southern Vision Systems Inc. booth, a company that specializes in manufacturing cameras to capture high-speed events was showing off its voLANte (video over LAN technology) digital signage solution.
"This is a 100 percent digital signage solution from the PC output, across Ethernet, to remote receivers," said Bob Sharp, director of sales and marketing for the company. "So we start out digital and we end up digital. It's audio and video. It basically takes the DVI output from your PC and sends it across Ethernet – standard, off-the-shelf Ethernet – to our remote receivers."
Sharp added that the company uses a solution called "LocalPlay" to store local content so, in the event of a disruption, the screens can switch to that content rather than a static blue screen.
At the Spacenet booth, Alasdair Calder, director of product management for the company, explained how Spacenet is able to provide both VSAT and terrestrial network solutions for their clients. He showcased the company's Prism solution.
"So once the DSL or the Cable goes down, then the Prism box here will automatically switch to the satellite network," he said. "Having satellite at your location helps, because satellite is actually a multicast medium. So customers don't just use it for the backup portion of the network."
At the bright yellow Tightrope booth, the focus was on the company's Carousel digital signage framework – a solution that, according to literature handed out at the booth "is a hardware and software package designed from the ground up to provide organizations with an easy and reliable way to communicate with dynamic digital signage." Carousel has the ability to display high-def images, video, text, RSS feeds, live video and meeting management systems.
Ralph Bachofen, director of product management and marketing was busy at the Triveni Digital booth, explaining how his company provides digital signage solutions for a number of verticals, including retail environments, service shop lobbies and houses of worship.
"We are in the content distribution environment," he said. "That's what our strength is. We do a lot of point and multi-point content distributions and solutionsâ€¦pushing it out from one point to multiple points – to many locations – to the players, so to speak, and from there, played out on the screen."
At the USAV Group booth, Jim Huber, general manager and director of sales for Nor-Com Inc., explained the logic behind what USAV is.
"USAV is a group of systems integration companies across the United States that have banded together for the purpose of sharing best practices and for national platform initiatives such as digital signage," Huber said. "We are a one-stop shop from integration, design, engineering, installation and service for a national, regional or local rollout. Because we have so many partners across the United States, we can make sure it is installed, engineered and designed properly."
At the Prism Technologies booth, company representatives were offering a variety of digital signage content solutions to attendees. Examples? How about engaging 3D modeling, such as animations that fly through crowded cities? Or interactive content that enables the viewer to zip through a retailer's catalogue at will? Or even content that can be used in a self-service kiosk application?
Keith Sugawara, the general manager of the Connectivity and Wireless Division of Silex Technology, was glad his company is an exhibitor at the Expo.
"We've been very pleased with the interest in our wireless technology," he said. That technology, dubbed the Multicast Video Distribution System (MVDS) by the company, provides a highly flexible way to handle digital signage applications in almost any kind of environment.
"We provide connectivity solutions for digital signage," he said. "Our unique capability is that we can multicast video and audio across either a wired or wireless network infrastructure. This provides advantages over other analog-based connectivity solutions including overcoming wiring infrastructure challenges with our wireless technology."
It takes more to make a good digital signage deployment than good digital signage. The deployer also needs to ensure that the signage is located in a good environment. That's the mission of Skyline Exhibits, a company that also had a booth at the show.
"We created branded platforms for digital signage platforms," said Chuck Schaefer, president of the company. "In other words, we create environments for digital signage to be effective in retail environments through displays, graphics and structures that can be used in a wide variety of applications. So we're a manufacturer of fixtures and total turnkey solutions all the way from design through installation."
Radical Computing Corp. also had a booth at the Expo and Tim Ruban, chief executive officer of the company, was on hand to promote the company's Retail Path Networks digital signage media players.
"There are a couple of really cool things about it," he said of the solution. "First of all, you can run multiple channels from the same device. So you can drive up to four unique content environments in a very small footprint device with virtually no moving parts. So this is a very robust infrastructure.
The X2O Media booth was surrounded by buzz and activity, as the company had recently announced the launch of the next generation of its Xpresenter platform, which covers all the steps in the digital signage workflow from content authoring, scheduling, management, distribution to remote management and playout. The software features a recently-patented and unique PowerPoint-based approach to content creation and includes an enhanced style gallery of graphics templates, video clip previewing and tools for quickly resizing presentations to fit the varying dimensions of output displays.
Guillermo Amtmann, president and chief executive officer of ZipCast was also excited to be at the show. His company provides a digital signage advertising network that enables affiliates to access a global database of clients, gain exposure to national advertisers and generate revenue. "In this industry, that's our core business – selling the advertising – and for that we need to place screens," he said. "So we're facilitating the network to place screens."
His company provides a digital signage advertising network that enables affiliates to access a global database of clients, gain exposure to national advertisers and generate revenue. "In this industry, that's our core business – selling the advertising – and for that we need to place screens," he said. "So we're facilitating the network to place screens."
"In this industry, that's our core business – selling the advertising – and for that we need to place screens," he said. "So we're facilitating the network to place screens."