Examples of digital signage (videos)

Digital signage is a form of electronic display that shows television programming, menus, information, advertising and other messages.

Digital signage is a growing industry around the world but there is particularly strong interest here in Japan and neighbouring South Korea. Most recently, local businesses are focussing more and more on digital signage built with web technologies. However there seems to be some concern that existing standards (HTML5, CSS3, SVG, etc.) don’t address all the issues for web-based signage to really take off. For this reason, the Web-based Signage Business Group was set up as part of the W3C community.

In order to fully understand what’s required before more specific action is taken, use-cases and real-world examples are necessary. It’s often underestimated just how varied digital signage can be so here I’d like to show a few interesting examples from the Far East.

Funky-sized 360-degree display

The resolution of this display in Hikarie, Tokyo, is about 4,000 x 100 pixels. It makes designing for mobile devices look like child’s play! The content is mostly informational consisting of a floor guide, event information, a horizontal clock, etc. shown repeatedly. The back-to-back displays are sometimes in sync and sometimes show differing content.

Side-by-side advertising and info displays

Also from Tokyo is this contrast of digital signage usage. The left-hand screen shows a selection of 15-second and 30-second adverts based on a pre-determined order and frequency. The right-hand screen shows information about the train which is shown in timed mini-loops e.g. Japanese first, English second, but these are interrupted by external triggers such as the train arriving at a station.

Transparent product display

I couldn’t resist this South Korean example — it’s so cool! It was spotted by Rich Tibbett in Seoul and although it seems to be presumably a simple timed loop, it has a few points of interest. Obviously the transparent screen is one, but also the use of a skewed video whose timing has to be perfectly synchronised with the accompanying animation.

Addition: Vending machine with signage

As suggested by Karl in the comments, here’s a digital vending machine with a discreet built-in camera just above the screen. Normally it operates as a sign showing video adverts but when it detects a person in front of it, the video overlays disappear and it operates as a regular, albeit animated, vending machine. I did hear an unnerving rumour that it has the ability to detect characteristics (a person’s rough age, gender, etc.) to customise how it displays content but I have no solid information.

If you know of other interesting examples, feel free to leave a link in the comments section.

8 thoughts on “Examples of digital signage (videos)

  1. karl

    In the past in Shibuya, there was a interactive map in Shibuya in SVG made by KDDI Labs and financed by TEPCO. It’s gone now. http://la-grange.net/2006/12/24-1213-svg-map-shibuya

    The signage from JR Train stations showing the traffic issues is also an interesting case.

    The new vending machine with electronic display.

    At Narita there is ahuge matrix of screens which shows ads, I do not know if they have any sense of dynamic information.

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  3. Luca

    There is a shelf for retailers with an integrated webcam, that allows to do targeted advertisement, without storing sensitive information (i.e. pictures are not saved) .

    It is called Pop Channel and it has recently won the Popai Global Award 2013 in Chicago. It is spread over different countries in Europe, e.g. Spain and Italy.

    Here is a video:

    It is nothing more than a well designed shelf with an integrated monitor and webcam, and yet it opens the doors to the new era of Digital Signage.
    The engine is Web Signage: a web base software for Digital Signage that powers the whole structure and connects the dots together.

    1. Daniel Post author

      Grazie Luca.

      I think it would be interesting especially if two or more of the monitors are synchronised.
      The addition of a webcam looks like it could become popular but it obviously raises privacy issues that I feel need to be addressed before this becomes widespread.

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  6. Digital Signage

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    The concept was unveiled last year at NAB, this year we’ll actually be able
    to see it deliverable. configuration consist of an LCD monitor encased in a ruggedized steel enclosure with
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