The Perspective 
Wednesday, 13 January 2010
…won’t ever been seen in the marketplace. That’s because Intel’s “proof-of-concept” digital signage application, like a concept car, is designed to show the capabilities of “tomorrow’s digital signage,” using today’s processors and software.

For those who haven’t been paying attention to the computing giant’s foray into digital signage, Intel last week showed a multi-screen retail digital signage installation at CES. The nearly eight-foot-tall structure made an appearance again this week at Intel’s booth at the National Retail Federation’s BIG Show in New York City.

I spoke with Intel digital signage director Jose Avalos yesterday while he was at the show, and he said that the proof-of-concept is the first step in a six-month push from Intel to make its digital signage efforts more apparent to the public. Based on the conversation, I understand the efforts consist of three main things at this point:

1. The retail proof of concept, which serves as a way to let the retail industry know what is possible through the use of digital signage. As Avalos said in the interview, the concept won’t be put into production, and the technology is still several years off, but the processing units and the software platform is in fact available on the market today. The concept essentially has three screens – two back-to-back LCDs and a clear holographic screen that is supposed to support augmented-reality-like shopping experiences. It’s also equipped with a CognoVision anonymous audience metrics system which gathers audience demographic data and relays it to advertisers. The applications can be left to the retailers, but Intel suggested it could be used to explore merchandise, find out about promotions, submit feedback on products, read customer reviews, view past purchasing histories and share information.

Here is a video of the concept to give you a better idea:

2. A partnership with Microsoft for a digital signage platform that supports both Intel processing chips and Microsoft software. Officially titled the “Windows 7-based Windows Embedded Standard 2011 operating system powered by 2010 Intel Core micro-architecture,” the platform is supposed to help “defragment” the industry by supplying a common platform that everyone could work off of. Essentially, the idea is that the users’ familiarity with Microsoft Windows Embedded and Intel Core processors will help drive adoption of the system. You can read details of the platform on Digital Signage Today.

3. Intel’s architecture of processing chips to be used with digital signage was disclosed to me yesterday in a presentation by Avalos. Intel is going to be using three processors to power various levels of digital signage systems:

-    The Intel Atom processor will be used for basic digital signage apps: Single-player per screen, Single-source video advertisement content with limited content blending.
-    The Intel Core i5 will be used with what Intel calls “mainstream digital signage,” which are networked, remote-managed and can support interactivity and rich media.
-    The Intel Core i7 will be used with “high-end digital signage,” like the proof-of-concept, where content is extremely interactive or requires running multiple apps at once (like augmented reality, audience measurement and wayfinding as on the concept. This is also the suggested processor for video walls.
Posted by: Bill Yackey AT 09:52 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  

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