December 2019 Page 8

Edtech and the Total Costs of Ownership

With education budgets under continuing pressure, buyers are increasingly aware of the Total Cost of Ownership when consid- ering current hardware options.

DCC Technology operat- ing profit up 42.6% on half year results

DCC has announced another strong first half performance with Group adjusted operating profit increasing by 14.5% (up 13.7% on a constant currency basis) to £162.6 million. Of particular interest to AV News, DCC Technology’s revenues increased to £25.4 million (up 42.6% from £17.8 mil- lion on the equivalent period last year). All of the Group’s divisions recorded good profit growth in the seasonally less significant first half of the year. Total revenues amounted to £7.312 billion (compared to £7.418 billion for the same pe- riod last year), or down 1.4%. Nonetheless, adjusted oper- ating profit totalled £162.6 million for the period (up by 14.5% from £141.9 million for the equivalent period last year). Group adjusted operat- ing profit increasing by 14.5% (up 13.7% on a constant cur- rency basis) to £162.6 million, in line with expectations. The Group continued to be active in mergers and acquisi- tions and DCC Healthcare has acquired of Ion Laboratories Inc, a Florida-based contract manufacturer of nutritional products for an enterprise value of approximately $60 million. DCC’s Technology business has acquired Bconnected Limited, a provider of Enterprise Mo- bile Management (EMM) and Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions, and Kerèn B.V., a specialist, value-add, Pro AV distributor. Based in Al- mere in the Netherlands (more details in Business News this issue).

Donal Murphy, DCC Group Chief Executive, commented that: “Notwithstanding the continuing uncertain macro- economic outlook impacting the UK economy, and the Tech- nology business in particular”, the Group believes that the year ending 31 March 2020 will be another year of good operating profit growth and further devel- opment and will be broadly in line with current market con- sensus expectations.

Page 14

2019 in the rear-view mir- ror

If this was the year of the col- laborative display, dvLED and laser phosphor projectors. Voice control and VR just snuck in at the end – pointing to exciting times ahead.

Barco brings VR to construction planning meeting rooms

Against a background of con- tinuing discussion, Barco has leapfrogged other contenders with the introduction of Canvas - a solution for companies that want to take VR and 3D images into meetings. Canvas offers a group of decision-makers and experts access to VR resources, while still being able to interact with each other. Barco’s Canvas is said to be the first VR solution that both serves the needs of group VR sessions and regular meetings. In this way, the Canvas suits

a focus on AEC (Architecture, Engineering and Construction). Barco’s Canvas consists of 3 projection surfaces, set up at an angle of 135°, and opens a new era for virtual reality in enter- prises. It enables an increasing number of users to experience group VR that fosters collabo- ration between teams and al- lows customers to preview and assess buildings or designs be- fore they are built. The ability to do this in the convenience of a meeting room, while at the same time using the screen as

Using Barco’s plug-and-play ClickShare technology, users have the freedom to share their content on the screen and have interactive discus- sions. When the users put on the 3D glasses, the Canvas becomes an immersive dis- play that enables insight into 3D data. In this way, the Can- vas creates an overwhelming experience for, among other things, sales and marketing purposes, project meetings where 3D modelling adds an important dimension to


Existing signage networks using BrightSign XD1034 or XT1144 me- dia players can implement voice activation capabilities by pur- chasing the BrightVoice Command Model Service and a USB-connect- ed microphone for each endpoint.

In an interview with AV News, DCC Technology’s Managing Di- rector Tim Griffin acknowledged the importance of continuing growth outside the UK to reduce concentration in the light of con- tinuing economic and political uncertainty

by natural voice commands that trigger playback of on-screen content, music, lighting and oth- er devices. And while this type of interaction mimics the workflow popularized by commercially available voice-enabled smart speakers and other devices, the BrightVoice solution is hosted locally on the BrightSign player and does not require an internet connection.

Kurt Doornaert, Director Virtual Experience at Barco Group VR: “There are amazing opportunities for companies and organizations that decide to leverage the potential of VR, Barco Canvas is a new solution designed for construction and for all VR users looking into group VR.”

two distinct purposes, allowing customers to maximize return on their investment. Canvas is applicable in all markets where 3D images are coupled with business objectives, with


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a traditional display, is truly unique.

In meetings and collaboration sessions, Barco Canvas acts as a large display surface for a wealth of information and data.

ficiently monitor progress or reduce mistakes during exe- cution.

“Smart devices such as speak- ers, watches and phones have propelled voice interactivity into the mainstream, and therefore voice-activated digital signage is a natural extension of that work- flow,” said BrightSign CEO Jeff Hastings. “What’s unique about the BrightVoice solution is that

continued on page 4

BrightSign unveils

voice activated signage

BrightSign has unveiled iBright- Voice - the company’s voice-ac- tivated digital signage solution that enables a unique, hands- free interactive experience. BrightVoice allows audiences to interact verbally with digital sig- nage using wake words followed

The direct channel to the industry

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