Dozens of different options for digital signage solutions that pair the open source Android operating system with low-cost media playback devices have emerged recently in the marketplace, but choosing the right one is anything but simple. Without careful hardware selection and software optimization, the lower capital cost promise of Android-based digital signage systems can easily be offset and overwhelmed by the higher operating costs of repairing and replacing unreliable, underperforming systems.
The recent Digital Signage Expo trade show in Las Vegas was the first time we’ve noticed well-established companies in the digital signage sector move from dabbling on the R&D bench to actively marketing solutions based on the Android operating system.
A handful of companies – actually not as many as we might have expected – were showing working versions of solutions that had moved fully off of Windows or Linux to Google’s open source operating system. While we have all seen things at trade shows that never make it beyond the proof of concept stage, we think the industry is on the cusp of a substantial shift to Android because of the advantages it offers.
Android is labelled and known as the go-to operating system for smartphones and tablets not made by Apple, but there’s actually much more to it. It’s a complete operating system, middleware layer, and application layer that runs on top of a Linux foundation. It already has strong device and communication protocol support, and there is a huge inventory of Android applications (or “apps”) that add functionality and open these devices up to back-end, instantly-deployable solutions. Continue reading
We could argue the case that Integrated Systems Europe has grown to such a degree it is THE must-attend for people in the digital signage industry, but as many or more people will argued the singularly-focused Digital Signage Expo –http://www.digitalsignageexpo.net– next week in Las Vegas is the primary event.
DSE attendance is just a fraction of ISE, but everyone who goes is there to talk about digital signage and digital out of home, whereas ISE has a much broader scope.
The DSE event has now been around for many years and attracts vendors and attendees from around the globe. Spread over two, three or four days, based on whether you are there for training and education, or just to roam the trade show, DSE packs a lot into the agenda. Continue reading