It’s time we promoted interactive displays

How many people actually look at screens? Well, research shows that digital signage (in form of basic screens, video walls, digital posters etc.) increases the probability of a sale by 30% and eyeballs by 10%. Now there are no actual quantitative research reports which I’ve come across, but it’ll be great if you could share links.


The question is: how to increase the consumer engagement using digital signage? One of the best answers to this is: Interaction. We have to, for a moment  remove our marketing and technology hats and put on  ‘consumer psychology headgear’. Wisconsin School of Business has published a whole chapter on Sensory Factors and Consumer Behavior.  Let me highlight some parts of the book which correlate with interactive display technologies.

Authors  Joann Peck of University of Wisconsin and Terry L. Childers University of Kentucky write that,

Our judgments about a store, its products, and even its personnel, are driven in part by the smells we encounter (our olfactory system), the things we hear (our auditory system), the objects we come into physical contact with (our tactile system), our taste experiences (the gustatory system), and what we see (the visual system).

So if screens are interactive, we not only capture the visual system but also the tactile system.

The sense of touch, or haptics (touch with the hands) has historically been the least studied sense in marketing. Perhaps the rise of online and catalog shopping, and an inability to physically examine products prior to purchase has spurred this area of research. The primary categories of touch and haptic research include the differences in product attributes that encourage touch, individual differences in the motivation to touch, and situational influences that encourage touch. Finally, one research study examined the interaction between vision and touch and the elongation bias.

What we can possibly deduce from this is that when a display is just put up in a retail environment, it acts as an aid to the overall marketing goals.  But to actually utilize a display , it may be made interactive. With a touch glass interface or gesture recognition and tailored content like interactive catalogs, consumers are likely to interact more and actually buy products since it is at the last instance of their purchase decision.Mall consumers and making marketing a more interactive experience in UAE

Another major area in need of future research is the need to move from a more “sense by sense”
perspective to investigations of the multi-sensory integration of sensory inputs. As Calvert, Spence,
and Stein (2004, p. xi) note, “here can be no doubt that our senses are designed to function in concert and that our brains are organized to use the information they derive from their various sensory channels cooperatively in order to enhance the probability that objects and event will be detected rapidly, identiifed correctly, and responded to appropriately” (emphasis added). Ernst, Bulthof , and Newell (2003; cited in Newell 2004) found that bimodal recognition was enhanced by 10% versus learning that occurred either visually or haptically.

Digital signage companies and integrators should convince their clients to incorporate touch overlays and gesture control.  We are providing prospects and enthusiastic clients with innovative solutions in touch, gesture and all forms of interactive media. Many more companies are trying to promote such projects in the GCC.

Touchmagix technology available by Multitech AV from Dubai
Touchmagix technology available by Multitech AV from Dubai

Coming back to senses, I loved the conclusion of the chapter from the book:


A Duck,  then it Must Be A …. (Duck)”. “Perhaps,” would seem to be the best answer. Sensory stimuli can aid in our processing of information and sometimes can bias and mislead us in forming our impressions. This fascinating contradiction, however, makes the study of sensory factors in consumer behavior challenging and all the more rewarding as we further our investigations of how consumers make sense of their world.



Wisconsin School of Business:


The life and times of LED screens in UAE

There is one thing LED’s hate:  heat. Gulf climate is lethal for LED screens, and thus it becomes indispensable for an investor to make sure that the LED display, on which a lot of money will be spent, is reliable and long lasting.

There are 2 ways in which mediocre LED technologies can throw cold water on your project, especially in the Middle East:

1. Screens going dimmer each day

Screen on Abu Dhabi's Marks & Spencer at Airport Road
Screen on Abu Dhabi's Marks & Spencer at Airport Road has gone quite dim for the daylight usage

As years go by, the age of diodes reflects in their brightness. Luminosity decreases with age as far as LEDs are concerned.  If Japanese diodes are used, the screens can relatively sustain their brightness for longer. As UAE’s heat and intense humidity overpower all industrial capabilities of these electronic wonders, what is important to choose is which make is your screen’s diodes – Japanese or Chinese?

Another example of screens getting dimmer in Abu Dhabi:

Screen has gone dimmer at ADNEC, Abu Dhabi
Screen has gone dimmer at ADNEC, Abu Dhabi

There is no way out – dimming with age, that’s why no LED screen can guarantee more than 5-6 years. The good ones like D3 LED can surely run for many more years.

2. Parts of the screens going phut

You will invariably see LED billboards with portions of it showing distortion, pixelation, macroblocking and other phenomena. These generally result as a nightmare for the owner of these screens and a major disappointment for the advertisers.

Error in parts of the screen
Error in parts of the screen seen at the same screen in Abu Dhabi



55″ MLCD with 5.5mm bezel

Orion has introduced a 55″ MLCD screen with just 5.5mm seam gap at a much lesser price than plasma. The OLM 5550 is a great option for FF&E contractors and interior designers, as they were finding it hard to always fit the 40,42 and 46″ configurations.  The OLM 5550 has a frame of 1026mm x 580mm, which gives a far better choice to the fit-out designers as less number of screens are needed to fit a significant area. And all this costs lesser than you’d otherwise pay for.

Ultra Thin Bezel Multi LCD. Breathtaking technology with Full HD and Ultra Narrow Bezel (5.5mm), the OLM-5550 will pioneer the multi display market with seamless tiled display experience and vivid image. Being equipped with eco-friendly DIRECT LED BLU, the 55” FHD multi display consumes less power than conventional CCFL BLU model.


The 5550 is an Ultra Thin Bezel Multi LCD; a breathtaking technology with Full HD and Ultra Narrow Bezel (5.5mm), the OLM-5550 will pioneer the multi-display market with seamless tiled display experience and vivid images. Being equipped with eco-friendly DIRECT LED BLU, the 55” FHD multi display consumes less power than conventional CCFL BLU model.

Some additional specifications are as follows:

    • Luminance of White: 700 cd/m²
    • Contrast Ratio: 3,500:1
    • Number of pixels: 1920(H) x 1080(V)
    • Input: DVI-D x 1, PC x 1, Video x 1, RS-232C x 1, LAN x 1, Service x 1
    • Terminal Output: DVI-D x 1, PC x 1, Video x 1, RS-232C x 1
    • Multivision: Yes (Daisy chain)
    • Bezel (Seam Gap): 5.5 mm
    • Max Multivision Layer (W x H): 10 x 10 (15×15 Option)
    • Built in temperature sensor: Yes
    • Built in light sensor: Optional
    • OSD Languages:  English / Korean / Japanese / Spanish / Italian / German / French / Russian / Chinese
    • Additional hardware (like TV tuner, ports): On request

The official distributor of the 5550 for GCC countries  is Multitech AV LLC from Dubai

43 companies that provide AV & Digital Signage Integration services in UAE / MENA

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Some of the known (& unknown) Audio-Visual integrators from UAE. This is just a partial list, there may be many more who shall be added to this list.
Some of the known (& unknown) AV integrators from UAE. This is just a partial list, there may be many more who shall be added to this list.
  1. Almoe Group
  2. Alpha Data
  3. Al Reyami Technologies
  4. AVI SPL
  5. AV Concepts
  6. Bond Communications
  7. Crownstar Technology
  8. Digivalet
  9. Dubai Audio
  10. Dynapixels
  11. FVC
  12. Granteq
  13. Intertech
  14. Instore Masters
  15. Metro Plus Ads
  16. MxN Mena
  17. Native Systems
  18. New Age Technologies
  19. NGS Interactive Systems
  20. Oasis Enterprises
  21. Omnix International
  22. Omnix Media Networks
  23. Pixcom Technologies
  24. Pragmatic Solutions Technology
  25. Qvestmedia
  26. Technomight
  27. Transwall Technologies
  28. Tornado Technology Services
  29. Visionaire
  30. Zio Technologies

Did I miss any? Please comment on this post for any integrators you know!


Italian-made AV installation equipment now in the Middle East

With a plethora of Chinese wall brackets, stands, racks and mounting accessories, AV integrators from Middle-East have some better products to choose from. Products 100% made in Italy have been recently launched by Euromet with it’s exclusive distributor in Dubai – Multitech AV.

Euromet website says:

Italian spirit is the trademark, that attention to detail that makes us proud to be a quality standard World Wide recognized. The designed solutions take the shape of our projects and the Customer needs.

Originality and uniqueness from simple words turn into tangible product lines:

  • Monitor Mounts
  • Projector Mounts
  • 19″ Racks
  • Trusses
  • Light Tripods
  • Speaker Tripods
  • Speaker Stands
  • Speaker Stands
  • Table Mic Stands
  • Musical Stands
  • Spare Parts

The products not only look amazing,  the materials used are superior in quality  – a class apart from the rest. Now it’s up to the integrator to decide!

OMG. 100-screen Video wall by Samsung

Sometimes you’d wonder do we need a video wall made of a whopping 100 screens? Apparently we do. Samsung’s stint at McCarran international airport to install this humongous video wall made with 100,  46″ screens sure has been engaging the audiences.

100-screen Samsung video wall at Las Vegas

Brands are leveraging this mega screen since McCarran airport is a venue to travelers from all over, especially the ones with great purchasing power.

It was inaugurated last year and has come a long way. Here’s it’s inaugural video:

Airports in cities like Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha also should implement seamless video walls with at-least 50 screens, considering the tremendous possibilities of enticing travelers who are waiting in indoor areas of airports.

Seamless technology which is now common in cost-effective LCD screens offer bezel widths as low as 5.5 mm, offered by Orion, Samsung, Barco and NEC.

Orion, out of all the choices seems to be the most cost-effective and superior in quality, as it makes use of Samsung panels manufactured in their exclusive industrial-grade display factory in Korea.