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Digital Signage Has Entered Its ‘Talkies’ Phase

Sound is increasingly part of the picture for digital signage as demonstrated at Digital Signage Expo 2014.

Dan Daley

The Barix booth at the show was demoing its digital-signage audio solution, one that sends the sound to listeners’ mobile devices. This is transmitted over Wi-Fi to a smartphone app, the Barix Audio Point, which the viewer has already downloaded and which would usually be provided by the client, generally a retailer. The app prompts consumers to scan a QR Code for stream access, which provides relevant audio content in synchronization with on-screen video, a combination Barix CEO Ronni Guggenheim asserted brings higher awareness to promotions, store branding and other messaging through deeper engagement with shoppers.

The hook for Barix’s system is its zero-latency synchronization with the video in the signage, but its BYOD and ability to integrate with any digital-signage system are also benefits, he said. Multichannel audio capacity additionally supports multiple streams, allowing retailers to provide audio signage content in several languages.

“Audio used to be perceived as pollution when it came to signage,” Guggenheim told CI at the show. “Using their own mobile devices, the act of seeing and listening together raises the grade of perception, and through this solution retailers can give their customers a more complete experience that raises the potential to drive purchases.”

Barix’s digital-signage audio solutionsends the sound to listeners’ mobile devices over Wi-Fi to the Barix Audio Point app.


Turtle Beach
Turtle Beach was showing its Hypersound digital-signage audio solution, which consists of floor-mounted speakers that, using a combination of software manipulation of phase and aiming of the speakers, send highly focused beams of audio at a listener standing exactly in the beam’s sweet spot but, as importantly, keep sound out of adjacent areas.

The product, which became available last year, according to Todd Savitt, VP of sales & marketing at Turtle Beach, is targeted at brand managers in retail and can be installed at POS and POP locations in stores. This version of the product just made its debut in Build-A-Bear stores in St Louis; earlier versions of the product have already been installed in Wal-Mart stores in Mexico.

“This isn’t about lighting up an entire store with sound,” said Savitt. “It’s about getting a highly focused message directly to the customer.”

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