Video Walls Slim Down and Lighten Up to Reduce Costs


Blog081018_880x440In 2018, the best video wall systems are made up of advanced flat panels that are lighter in weight, and less deep in profile than what was common not too long ago.

If your video wall/flat panel supplier is not offering options that are light in weight (44 lbs. or 20KG), and slim in depth (3.42 inches or 87 mm) to allow for easier installation and easier maintenance of the displays after installa­tion, you’re using yesterday’s technology.

It’s important to note that if a video wall is mounted in such a way that it protrudes more than four inches from a wall at foot-traffic level, then it is not compliant with strict ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) regula­tions. For this reason video walls are often set back into the wall itself, to accommodate the mounting gear, cables and other hardware, and maintain ADA compliance.

Remember also that weight considerations affect many aspects of a video wall installation: shipping costs to get the product to the site; the amount and cost of mounting hardware needed; the number of handlers required per panel installation, and maintenance costs after the installation is complete.

Whether upgrading from older video wall technology or revitalizing your business environment with a first-time video wall, be sure to choose a video wall/display supplier that is at the fore­front in light weight, thin dis­plays and integrated mount­ing systems.


Calibrating Video Wall Screens for Picture Perfection


Video wall calibration may sound daunting to end users and even to systems inte­grators frustrated with working with identical displays from the same manufacturer that look dif­ferent while showing exactly the same content. It all boils down to this: a video wall is by definition a configuration of individual images. So the different displays that make up a video wall must be calibrated to show a uniform picture across the entire wall.

This means not only maintaining brightness uniformi­ty across the screens, but also keeping the edges of each display as bright as the center of each display, and keeping the color consistent across all displays. In digital imaging, there is nothing as off-putting as a video wall that includes a scene of a beautiful blue sky but has one off-color greenish display right in the middle that spoils the effect.

The solution is to choose a video wall display provider that provides reli­able factory calibration (each display in a video wall design is set up at the factory to be calibrated with its sister displays in that video wall design). But there’s another important step.

Due to environ­mental factors, third-party content software anomalies, and user error, there often needs to be some calibra­tion on-site at a video wall installation. So the video wall display provider must also provide a fast, easy-to-use on-site calibration system.

Ideally this will include an Automatic ID setting for easy installation, so that if you install 100 displays, you do not need to waste valuable time setting up the unique ID of each one respectively. The Automatic ID eliminates the frustration.

To address the challenges of matching brightness and color across all screens, LG video wall displays incorporate factory calibration as well as efficient calibration tools, including an Automatic ID setting that allows for easy installation – integrators can achieve an optimal image within only 3-5 minutes per panel.

A video wall is a significant investment. And as such it should be expected to provide a breathtaking and realistic image to wow viewers, seriously engage them and make your message matter. Make sure your video wall is up for the task.


Take Their Breath Away with High-Impact Video Walls

We’ve all seen the rapid growth of large, dazzling video walls in public and private spaces – from airports to corporate offices to flagship retail to public venues and more. While the markets may be different the goal remains the same – to make a big impact with the message. Whether it’s a 2 x 2 video wall holding everyone’s attention in a conference room, a 3 x 3 with virtual workout classes in a fitness center, or hundreds of displays working together to create a colossal monument of digital goodness in a convention center, it’s important to know which technol­ogy is engineered to outperform the lesser brands and models, so you can choose a solution that is designed to engage and amaze wherever you place it. Here are a few guidelines:

Shrink those seams. The familiar “grid” of imag­es in older video wall technology is distracting at best. In recent years technology improvements and engineering breakthroughs have allowed for thinner display bezels that create a fine line where the adjacent displays meet. The best video wall/flat panel display manufacturers offer bezel sizes in the “narrow” range: about 3.5 mm bezel width. And the top-tier man­ufacturers are making “su­per-narrow” bezel products with a bezel thickness of as little as 1.8 mm, and even “ultra-narrow” bezels of 0.6 mm which combine to create a virtually seamless video wall with a thread-like 1.2 mm bezel-to-bezel width.

Simplify content distribution. The old days of need­ing very expensive and specialized video processing hardware to tile content to a video wall are gone, but there is still some confusion about the kind of media player required to get content to a video wall in different A/V applications. Ideally systems integrators or end users should choose a video wall solution that gives the option to: A) use sophisticated video processing platforms to feed content to the video wall and provide for advanced features such as interactiv­ity (touch screen, gesture control, facial recognition, etc.) if needed; or B) use a display’s built-in SoC (Sys­tem on a Chip) to eliminate the need for media players and simplify the system design to save on hardware costs.

Maximize viewing clarity. Wait a minute. Isn’t the whole idea of a video wall supposed to create big, beautiful high-resolution images that command attention? Absolutely. But there is an additional technology that can take it to another dimension – the ability to extend that amazing image quality out to a wide viewing angle so people approaching from an off-center distance can be drawn into the experience. This is LG’s proprietary IPS (In-Plane Switching) technology, which enables a true 178-degree wide viewing angle where colors remain accurate, saturation is vivid, contrast is high and graphics are crisp even when viewing the displays from extreme angles. Think about how wide 178 degrees actually is and you’ll understand why the most powerfully effective video walls feature the IPS advantage and can grab so much more attention – you’ve got a massive video wall and you extend its impact out to almost sideways. That’s impact. Another IPS advantage is that the displays use less energy and run cooler. Considering the purpose of videowalls IPS can pay off in solid ROI on energy bills alone.

For your inspiration. Keep in mind that although the massive video wall shown in the video below is a one-of-a-kind, Guinness world-record holder, the same company that made it possible is ready to equip businesses of any size to make a big impact in their own space to customers, employees, visitors, guests and travelers. We have the products, the technology and the partners to create a turnkey solution and scale it to any proportion. FYI – next week we’ll tell you about calibrating the image across multiple displays.

Have a look at the world’s largest video wall.


Ensure Effective Meeting Collaboration with Interactive Digital Boards

As the use of digital devices increases and digitalized working becomes more and more common, multiple people in different locations are working together to solve problems and make important decisions. As these tasks become more complex, collaborative meetings have become a key to success for businesses. To maximize the effectiveness of such meetings Interactive Digital Boards (IDB) are being used to reduce logistics costs and make the most of every minute.

The use of an IDB can be extended beyond general business/corporate meeting rooms to various venues such as hotel conference rooms, hospitals, military command centers, architectural firms and fashion design studios.

How does it work? An IDB helps facilitate a successful meeting by driving participants to freely submit their ideas directly onto the board using intuitive multi-touch and writing tools. Multiple users can write simultaneously, while 4K UHD picture quality keeps attendees engaged with vivid colors and crisp graphics that are easily seen from virtually any seat. What’s more, the IDB smart platform enables this kind of efficient collaboration even without the need for a PC, and enhances it further via file sharing and saving capabilities.

When you assemble a team and call a meeting you want it to be as beneficial to the business as possible. IDBs can help. See LG’s IDB in action in this short video.


Get students to spend on Campus with social spaces

Your students are spending money socializing off-campus, and it’s going to keep happening if you don’t act now. Campuses are full of potential places for students to gather, but schools aren’t taking advantage of them, fostering empty cafeterias and libraries. Innovative schools are retaining student dollars by turning campus businesses into opportunities to network and learn together.


At my school, off-campus coffee shops were the place to hang out. The drab cafeteria and library didn’t encourage socializing, they were last resorts.

 Modern schools are investing in spaces that bring people together. They offer study rooms with large displays for collaboration, so students aren’t huddled around a laptop off-campus. Social spaces like cafes integrated into libraries encourage students to spend more time and money on campus. Students studying in a library with a cafe are far more likely to buy a drink there than somewhere off-campus. You need to capitalize on convenience. 

Cafeterias have similar problems. Students will not spend their money in a place that is dated and boring. Address these issues by creating a social space with commercial televisions and ultra-wide menu displays. You can provide entertainment, make your cafeteria look better and make lines more efficient with one key update.


Today’s students expect an advanced, resourceful campus. They want spaces full of updated technology that facilitates learning, and signs that show where food and entertainment is. They want to socialize somewhere that doesn’t feel like a dingy school building. It all boils down to effective usage and promotion of your social spaces. 

Schools that lack today’s technology become a generic building demanding tuition. 

Show off a popular, thriving campus on your next tour.


The Hotel Guest Room: Accommodating, Entertaining and Unforgettable


It’s summertime. School is out and vacation plans are in. It means more traffic to hotel properties, and hoteliers use this opportunity to grow their database by capturing guest emails and profiles for marketing purposes. Marketing to previous guests is an effective way to develop a returning customer base.

And so is providing stellar accommodations. A standout hotel stay goes beyond the marketing strategy and can leave guests with an indelible impression of quality. Give guests an amazing experience and you’re likely to see it pay off in enthusiastic reviews, recommendations and return bookings. Which brings us to the hotel guest room and how to make it even better.

The guest room’s center of attention after a day of sightseeing and activities is the television. And today, there is so much more that can be done with that television.

Commercial-grade hospitality TVs are the ideal way to provide personalized services and top-quality entertainment for guests. From basic, small-screen Full HD TVs to large 4K Ultra HD smart TVs to razor-thin luxury TVs with state-of-the-art sound, hotels can have their pick and suit their budget.

Today’s hospitality TV technology enables digital decryption of premium HDTV content from cable, satellite or video-on-demand (VOD) services and supports an interactive electronic programming guide (EPG). It also facilitates easy remote TV configuration and programming via a server in the hotel’s head-end room, making configuration and setup a breeze without impacting the guests.

What’s more, hotels can provide guests with apps and lots of extras. With embedded applications such as Hulu, Crackle and YouTube, plus built-in Wi-Fi and display sharing, your tech-centric, device-enabled guests will feel right at home and be securely connected to enjoy personal content from their compatible mobile devices on their room TV.

Hotel systems integrators can take advantage of the TV/server IP-based integration and deploy customized services without the need for a set-top box. Wide platform support of HTML5, Java and Flash allows more options for SIs to develop rich, interactive custom applications guests will appreciate.

What if your hotel has non-smart TVs? An easy upgrade is a smart set-top box made specifically for the hospitality industry. It can enable advanced smart functionality and digital decryption of premium HDTV content on non-smart commercial models.

In peak season hotels are booked solid. Hoteliers ensure sufficient well-trained staff are on hand and do everything possible to keep guests from waiting long for services. And to that end, the guest room TV can play a major role by integrating custom content with interactive guest-centric features.

Using an HTML-based platform with a built-in UI design/editor that runs over an IP network, hotel SIs can keep guests up to date on hotel activities, news, weather and other information through widgets that can be placed on the TV’s home screen. Offering guests more services than ever before, an IP interface for two-way communications can enable guests to place orders for room service, book appointments at the spa, interact with the concierge, review their portfolio and check out.

Regardless of their size, hotels can benefit greatly from the latest hospitality televisions for guest rooms and innovative digital signage for the common areas. And so will today’s tech-savvy guests who are always looking for a better digital experience.


LG Electronics Announces Plans For U.S. Solar Panel Assembly Plant

Last week LG Electronics announced plans for a new solar module assembly plant in Huntsville, Ala. The new factory will create about 160 new full-time jobs, increasing LG’s Huntsville employment by 60 percent to more than 400 workers.

LG is investing $28 million to establish the new factory with two production lines on LG’s 48-acre campus in Huntsville, where the company has had operations for four decades. This underscores the company’s commitment to investing in America and to driving environmental sustainability.

Starting in early 2019, the new plant is expected to produce 500 megawatts of high-performance solar panels annually. “That’s over a million solar panels a year,” said Soon Kwon, global president of the LG B2B Company.

LG is one of the top providers of solar panels for the residential market in the United States, and the new solar plant will help LG better serve its U.S. customers, explained Kwon. “This demonstrates our commitment to being a long-term leader in the U.S. solar industry. LG’s investment in U.S. manufacturing is consistent with the Administration’s goal of creating U.S. jobs,” he said.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey welcomed with open arms LG’s significant expansion in the state. “LG has a long history as a leading corporate citizen in Alabama. Now, LG is launching our state’s first solar manufacturing plant, which represents a major milestone both for Alabama and for the company. We look forward to seeing where this great partnership takes us in the future,” she said.

LG selected Alabama after conducting a competitive, multistate search. Attractive state and local incentives were key to LG’s decision to locate the new solar production operations in Huntsville. “We’re thrilled that LG selected Huntsville for its new solar panel assembly plant, because the company considered many other locations for this project,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce. “LG is a world-class company, and its decision represents a powerful endorsement of Alabama’s advantages and its workforce.”

Calling LG “a strong community partner in Huntsville for many decades,” Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle said, “Our relationship has deepened through visits to the company’s headquarters in Korea and successful advancements in technological innovation. LG chose Huntsville as the place to do business in the U.S. more than 30 years ago, and they’ve chosen Huntsville again as a place to prosper with the new solar module plant.”

“With the expansion of LG Electronics in the Huntsville-Madison County, Alabama region, LG will utilize the latest technology in a high-growth market to produce these solar panels,” said Dale Strong, Chairman of the Madison County Commission. “The diversity and worldwide recognition of the Madison County economy demonstrates we continue to thrive with our finest hours still ahead.”

The new factory will initially assemble LG’s famous “NeON 2” series 60-cell modules, which are high-performance solar panels that generate over 17 percent more power than most conventional 60-cell panels (340 Watts-per-panel rating versus 290W). Light-induced degradation is reduced significantly in these panels to maximize performance and maintain maximum potential power output for the life of the modules.

The company’s new solar module plant builds on LG’s legacy of leadership in Huntsville. After starting as the company’s first U.S. manufacturing subsidiary in 1981, Huntsville became the home of LG’s service division in 1987, which expanded over the years to support LG’s growing presence in the United States. Today, as the headquarters location for North American service operations, LG Huntsville includes the technical call center, service training center, field service operations and parts warehouse.

The U.S. solar factory announcement coincides with other major LG jobs initiatives in the United States. LG is finishing construction of its new million-square-foot washing machine plant in Clarksville, Tenn. This $250-million factory will create 600 new jobs there when washer production starts in the fourth quarter. Later this year, LG will open an advanced electric vehicle components factory in Hazel Park, Mich., and expanded R&D center in Troy, Mich., creating nearly 300 new jobs there. And construction is under way for the new LG North American Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., a $300-million project that is expected to open in 2019.

LG’s NeON 2 series solar modules are used for residential roofs, commercial, and utility projects worldwide. Here are some interesting projects to give you an idea of what’s possible.


Property-Wide Digital Content Can Elevate the Hotel Guest Experience


Last Friday we talked about providing a better hotel guest experience for tech-savvy travelers, starting with attention-grabbing digital signage in the lobby. In fact, having a network of digital signage throughout the common areas can give the property a cutting-edge appearance and engage guests in many ways. Let’s think about the kinds of content a hotel might want to run on that digital signage.

Show Guests the Way
Welcome guests and guide them with digital maps and directories. As guests make their way to and from their rooms, touch screen displays in the common areas provide a familiar interface for them to navigate through your hotel.

Get Them to Their Meetings on Time
If visitors have arrived for a conference, small-format signage in the hallways can help get them to the right place at the right time. Manage your meeting room schedules in real time from a desktop PC, laptop, tablet or smart phone.

Entertain and Inform in the Restaurant or Bar
Use commercial-grade signage TVs for news and sports, and integrate your menus, promote daily specials, announce happy hours, deliver important alerts and more.

Offer the Best Fitness Classes in Town
In your fitness center, use video walls, large-format 4K UHD displays or hospitality televisions to offer a variety of interactive fitness classes 24/7. We partner with Fitness on Demand™, a leading delivery platform of hundreds of premium high-definition workout classes by the industry’s best instructors. Your guests can experience a diverse array of fitness classes at their convenience.

Entice Them into Your Salon and Spa
Use attention-grabbing stretched displays and razor-thin displays to set the ambience for a relaxing and rejuvenating escape. Include tranquil images, promote, cross-sell and upsell services and spa products, showcase the latest hair trends for inspiration, and introduce the stylists and massage therapists with their pictures and short bios.

Generate Additional Revenue with Advertising
Sell advertising space on your digital signage to inform guests about local tourist attractions, restaurants, nightclubs, car rental services and other businesses of interest.

Running digital signage in hotel common areas is easy with a platform such as webOS for Signage. WebOS for Signage works with the displays’ embedded System-on-Chip (SoC) and enables high-quality content creation and remote management, while eliminating the need for media players and onsite servers.

Next Friday we’ll take you to the guest room, where tech-savvy, device-enabled travelers can enjoy an accommodating and memorable entertainment experience that’s second to none. See you then.


Bring your Campus tour to life

When prospects tour your school in the summer, they’re facing an empty, unwelcoming campus.  Choosing which school to attend is a huge step in a student’s future, and they have to know they’ll be happy there for the next four years. Don’t let prospects walk away unconvinced.


Whether prospective students have already received acceptances, or are evaluating schools to apply to, you need to make a great first impression to ensure their enrollment. Don’t lose students at the last step of the process because of the season. When deciding which school to attend, I wanted someplace I could envision myself. Because I visited in the summer when much of campus was closed it felt deserted and uninviting. Students that get this impression from your school are enrolling elsewhere. Eliminate this issue by using new technology to display a vibrant campus and inspire touring prospects.

Show off your campus with digital signage over the summer months:

  • Advertise what’s open during fall and winter semesters that may not be open over the summer, such as your bookstore.
  • Display what your campus looks like when fall and winter semesters are in session.
  • Show all your school has to offer outside the classroom by advertising upcoming events and activities.
  • Your cafeteria is the heart of your school – promote all menu options with images that whet appetites.


An empty campus over the summer term means new opportunities. Digital signage allows you to show all your school has to offer. From typical student hang-outs to the possibilities of campus life, showcase an inviting school with lots of social opportunities.

Make your tour the best it can be year-round.


Tech-Savvy Guests Are Looking for More in Hotels


As we saw at HITEC this week, improving the guest experience is key to creating a standout hotel. Hospitality professionals browsed the show floor looking for solutions: What do hotel guests want and how can we better provide it?

What do we know about today’s hotel guests? From our perspective we know that many are tech-savvy. They’re accustomed to incorporating digital technology into all aspects of their lives – from mobile phones, tablets and laptops, to smart TVs and voice-activated home assistants. They depend on display screens for information and appreciate the immediate gratification of a digital experience. And they bring this expectation with them when they travel.

To meet and exceed the expectations of these guests, hotels are making the most of multi-featured, commercial-grade hospitality TVs in the guest rooms, and innovative digital signage solutions in the common areas. The end goal is to make it easier for hotels to serve their guests and communicate the messaging that will make their stay more enjoyable.

Let’s start with the lobby. A hotel lobby makes a strong first impression. It’s the first thing guests see, and it’s where innovative digital signage displays can create a wow factor and help define the hotel’s brand by communicating its strengths, values and services. The latest display form factors are attention-grabbing, fit just about anywhere, and content can be easily managed from a central location. Video walls, touch screens, razor-thin screens, curved screens, stretched screens and transparent screens can all be incorporated into a property-wide digital signage network.

Digital signage can maximize opportunities for guest-driven interactivity that can result in requests for more information, reservations at the restaurant and booking of spa services. Common-area displays give the property a cutting-edge appearance and can engage and inform guests in many ways.

Next week we’ll dive into the types of content a hotel might want to run on digital signage throughout the property. Stay tuned.