3 digital signage trends on the forefront

| by Bradley Cooper
3 digital signage trends on the forefront

In the digital signage industry, it's easy to get lost in a sea of various displays, software packages and media players. It can all start to blend together after a while. Last week, I saw the latest digital signage installations and deployments at the 2018 Digital Signage Expo at the Las Vegas Convention Center. I attempted to cut through the "noise" of the booths and get to the actual trends.

I identified three key trends in the market: better content management and insights, increasing use of IoT and the rise of smart cities.

Better content management and insights

At most booths I dropped by, I saw increasingly smarter and simpler content management tools. ComQi, for example, showcased its content management solution, which allows companies to design and control permissions for content. An end user could allow certain employees to change certain images in an animation, but not the branding. Users could also add their own code to the CMS to improve certain aspects.

Scala also demonstrated its analytics tool that allows end users to take a look at how long a customer stood at a display, where they interacted with a beacon, where they touched on the beacon and so on.

These two examples highlight a key trend in the industry: content management isn't just about swapping out content. It's easy to manage content remotely nowadays, the real challenge is to understand the impact of that content to boost ROI.

Increasing use of IoT

The Internet of Things was everywhere at a massive number of booths. Scala used an interactive mannequin, which allowed customers to touch a variety of places on the mannequin to pull up a presentation on a display about a particular outfit. The company also integrated beacons to determine a customer's location and dwell time at the mannequin.

Other companies used IoT devices that could interact with displays and touchscreens. Zytronic used circular devices that customers could place on a touch table to see details about various car dealerships and their offerings. The car details could then be projected onto a display.

The Internet of Things is rapidly taking over every industry, and digital signage is no exception.

Rise of smart cities

Smart cities are on the rise, and digital signage vendors are taking notice. Many companies at the event were displaying or discussing smart city solutions, from wayfinding solutions to the more advanced Wi-Fi providers.

At a keynote session, Mike Gamaroff, senior vice president of strategy at SITO mobile, said a push to improve "quality of life" in response to increasing urban populations is the key driver of smart cities.

"The migration of rural population to the city is growing at a pace it hasn't seen in a long time. The cities are going to get more crowded, there's going to more traffic and more usage of resources," Gamaroff said.

Cities are using tools such as smart city displays and kiosks to meet these increasing needs and also analyze resident movement patterns. With this information, they can improve everything from traffic patterns.

David Pal, CEO, Ads on Top, a co-presenter with Gamaroff, also said smart cities will be able to take this information and measure a city's overall efficiency and improve it.

The big picture

Overall, these three trends point to a more over arching issue: the ability to provide dynamic useful content to users.

 The Internet of Things can respond to consumers directly, and better content management systems can deliver better content more efficiently. Smart cities can directly respond to a customer's needs.

The age of deploy it and ignore it digital signage is long gone. The age of dynamic signage has arrived.

Image via

Topics: Content, Content Management, Customer Experience, Display Technology, Hardware, Outdoor Signage, Retail, Software

Companies: Scala, ComQi, Inc.

Bradley Cooper

Bradley Cooper is a Technology Editor for His background is in information technology, advertising, and writing.

wwwView Bradley Cooper's profile on LinkedIn

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