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IP-based Signage Delivers Cost-effective Scalability and Versatility

Jul 8, 2008 12:00 PM, By John W. DeWitt


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Airport digital signage application operated by X2O Media's Xpresenter platform. X2O's partnership with NetStreams integrates IP-based distribution of uncompressed HD signage content.

Airport digital signage application operated by X2O Media's Xpresenter platform. X2O's partnership with NetStreams integrates IP-based distribution of uncompressed HD signage content.

Providers and users of digital-signage technologies are turning to Internet protocol (IP) for network management and distribution of content—including uncompressed HD video. IP-based digital signage networks offer several advantages, including the ability to easily repurpose content for online applications as well as signage, and leveraging existing Internet infrastructure for rapidly scaling networks at lower cost. Recently, X20 Media and Harris announced new partnerships with NetStreams and VBrick Systems, respectively, to bring IP-based digital-signage solutions to market. Meanwhile, PlasMedia Productions is using the Helius IP-based signage platform in conjunction with cellular broadband to operate a shopping-mall network in 100 locations.

X20 Media integrated NetStreams' DigiLinX IP-based audio and video distribution solution with the Xpresenter 2.1 digital-signage platform to enable centralized distribution of HD digital-signage content to large numbers displays within a corporate, retail, or public-entertainment setting.

"By adding top-of-the-line IP distribution to our system, we're allowing customers to scale their digital-signage networks to virtually any size they desire," says David Wilkins, X2O Media's president and CEO. "Plus, they get the added benefits of leveraging their existing infrastructure investments and being able to control their solution from any point on the network."

Xpresenter allows users to create signage content and incorporate realtime data sources within the Microsoft PowerPoint interface. Once content is created, NetStreams' DigiLinX products—including the commercial MediaLinX AV multimedia encoder and ViewLinX multimedia decoder introduced last month at InfoComm—distribute uncompressed HD content via IP to any number of displays on the network. NetStreams' platforms enable switching between video sources, display control, and management of transcode sources that arrive in various video formats. In addition to distributing digital signage content, end users can harness their content distribution infrastructure for other applications. For example, DigiLinX can route other sources—e.g., live news broadcasts or camera feeds from remote offices—for playout on networked displays.



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