‘Future- Proofing’ companies in today’s ever-evolving world has become a corporate necessity, and staying ahead of the innovation curve is part of my job. On Thursday May 16, I attended the NEC Solutions Showcase at the Tobacco Docks. It’s an event in its 5th year dedicated to presenting the latest advances in display technology.
As the recently appointed manager of the FLUX IMPACT events, I spend a lot of time researching and investigating the latest technology innovations, so I was hoping to see some products I’d never seen or experienced in person before. Several companies and exhibitors were successful in surprising and exciting me.
Recently, I have been looking into innovations within the retail sector and, for me, it was the Retail area that was the star of the NEC Solutions Showcase.
The first thing to catch my eye was a large, touch screen display by Intel that allows customers to virtually view real-sized household appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines. Using a touchscreen menu, one can scroll the menu of products on offer, and when they select one, it comes up in full size. One can then see to scale products in the variations available, open the doors, and touch areas to highlight features. Shopping made easy.
Engage has used face recognition and data analysis software in various projects before including our Executive Brand Suite, but I was especially taken with NEC’s Field Analyst Display unit. (I’ll admit, I may be rather partial because it guessed my age at 22!) It estimates the number of visitors and exits, as well as gender and age, but where this product stands out to me is the registration of dwell time. Potentially this could provide the ability to recognize when someone’s attention is wavering and then alter the advertisement or message to hold attention, maximizing dwell time.
It was great to see one of our partners, U-Touch. It was hard to miss them with their 144” multi-touch screen. These screens run as large as 250”. They supply one of my favourite items in the Innovation Store, the Multitouch Overlays, making simple screens interactive.
I’ve saved my favourite’s to last…
Holiton let me virtually try on coats and model them, as seen below. They’ve invited me to their offices to virtually try on lipstick too, which I think is a brilliant solution and imagine all my girlfriends will be lining up to give that a go.
Finally, it was nice to meet a fellow American, Ryan Clayton of Mirrus. One can hold up an item of clothing in front of this mirror, and it will suggest items that go with it, while also capturing data analytics.
Other notable exhibitors who I enjoyed meeting include Visionpoint, Midwich and True Colors, AMX, and WSP AV’s Projection Tunnel.