Thursday, May 29, 2014

Interview with Mr. Jerome Moeri, Chairman of Navori SA (Part 1 of 2)

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Jerome Moeri, Chairman and Founder of Swiss-based Navori SA about his thoughts on the future of digital signage.

Here is part 1 of our conversation.

Q. Mr. Moeri, what do you see as the next hot trend in Digital Signage?

A. I see three emerging trends:

1. Multi-platform solutions, meaning one software offering the exact same features across multiple operating systems and it will be totally transparent to the user.  For example, no difference whatsoever whether you are pushing an update to a mix of Windows PCs and Android devices.

2. A return to the basics. Is the screen on... Is it set to the right input, etc...  This is where technologies like HDMI CEC will become essential.  HDMI CEC lets administrators confirm the status of the screen, select the right input and more and perform these tasks from any location making sure everything works just right.

3. Work from a hybrid hardware player database (multi-platform support) ensuring we have assigned the right player to the right screen.

Q. Is 4K relevant and is Navori looking to support this new display technology.

A. I think 4K screens add value on some applications like in retail as long as the audience is close enough to notice the details.  It’s interesting to note that 4K screens are getting closer to a human eye’s resolution which is great for some type of content.  I see 4K useful in the promotion of luxury goods such as watches and jewelry because you can enlarge these images significantly to see every detail.  It’s important to note the Microsoft Windows version of our QL Player software currently supports 4K and our Android player will support the resolution mid-2014.

Q. Do you see any future for 3D in digital signage?

A. 3D has been tried in print material, digital screens and cinema but it has failed to really take off.  In fact, it’s been a commercial failure. We don’t see this trend reversing any time soon.  Why use visual tricks to recreate what our mind does naturally.

Q. How do you see Android’s use evolve in digital signage?

A. Android has become the standard for single screen systems and this represents the majority of digital signage applications to this date.  Windows will continue to be the reference for the foreseeable future when dealing with multi-screen installations or for projects that have heavy processing requirements like interactive applications that use triggers or motion sensors (Kinect).

Q. Navori already offers an Android player device, any possibility there will be others such as tablets, etc…

A. Since Android’s introduction we've seen a whole new range of devices come to market and we expect this trend to accelerate.  Take for example screen manufacturer NEC who has recently launched a new OPS device that runs on the Android platform.  This is a great initiative and Navori is proud to announce we are now 100% compatible with this device.  At the other end of the spectrum we see solutions currently running on Samsung or similar consumer grade smart TVs.  We decided to take a different path and instead offer self-contained players that are  compatible with Microsoft Windows and Android.  We feel these two platforms will continue to dominate the market for the foreseeable future.  Next we have Android tablets that come in various formats and sizes. You can easily run our software on these devices to turn them into very affordable digital signage units.  Their biggest advantage is their low cost when compared to a solution based on traditional screens. Other advantages include support for interactive and non-interactive applications.  It’s important to state that while tablets are starting to make inroads into the digital signage space, 80% of installations still use traditional screens hence the importance hybrid PC/Android solutions like the one we currently offer.