One of the biggest digital signage trends for 2014 – and beyond – is video wall technology. In projects that range from retail and hospitality to gaming, education and corporate offices, consumers should expect to see video walls cropping up everywhere.
Many experts and manufacturers agree that advances in video walls are having a significant impact on the industry as a whole, and will for years to come. As a value-added reseller (VAR), you might see video walls begin to make up a large part of your digital signage business in the next several years. But first you must understand where the market is heading – and why.
Let’s take a look at the five ways LCD video walls are changing the digital signage industry:
1. Driving innovation.
Today’s video wall technology creates more of a seamless effect than was previously possible, thanks to new super narrow bezel LCD panels that minimize the “window pane effect.” As a result, video walls are becoming increasingly popular in many verticals, especially retail and hospitality.
With the increased adoption of LCD video walls comes fresh possibilities for content creation. Now, customers are expecting video walls – and digital signage in general – to be bigger and more eye-catching than ever before. Thanks to super-sized video wall installations, we’re seeing digital signage break new, innovative ground throughout the world.
2. Creating “immersive” experiences.
Going forward, digital signage will be less about disseminating information and more about creating immersive experiences for end users. Large LCD video walls draw people in, immersing them in a brand or an experience. Even smaller digital signage deployments are looking to mimic the feel of a video wall, which is why so many customers are beginning to incorporate interactive displays.
3. Leveling the playing field.
Early LCD video walls were both expensive and complicated. Screens had to be installed in a way that would allow them to be linked to a single PC, which is what created the look of a unified display. Now, LCD video walls usually have their own built-in PC board, which helps your customers to quickly and easily operate a multi-screen display without additional external hardware.
Also, LCD prices are falling all the time, which allows more customers in a wider range of verticals to enter the digital signage market. While video walls used to be out of reach for smaller retailers, now stores of all sizes can take advantage of large-scale digital signage. In the next several years, we’ll begin to see even more retailers making use of this high-impact technology in many store locations – not just flagships.
4. Bringing sustainability to digital signage.
LCD screens are more energy efficient than other alternatives, which means that today’s video walls actually consume less electricity than you might think. LCD video walls also produce less heat, which means customers don’t have the added cost of higher air conditioning bills to content with. This allows customers the financial flexibility to deploy even more screens, while also helping them to earn a return on their investment even faster.
5. Reimagining the role of digital signage.
Now that large-scale signage is more within reach for customers, many enterprising organizations have started using video walls in innovative new ways.
For example, interactive video walls are being used in retail settings not just as signage but as “virtual stores,” enabling end users to digitally shop and experience products before finding them in the store. Also, many CCTV control rooms in corporate and gaming environments are now using LCD video walls, rather than smaller, individual screens, because they provide greater control and a more efficient use of space.
Have you already experienced an up-tick in your video wall business? What are some surprising ways in which your customers are using video wall technology?