September 2020 Page 14

Digital signage: business op- portunities

Enhanced digital signage is proving its worth aganst the Covid-19 pandemic. We look at the solutons availabe.

Voice and video calls triple during pandemic

New research from Parks Asso- ciates’ Market Snapshot - ‘Voice as a Lifeline and the Transfor- mation of Home Telephony’ - re- veals a surge in home telephony during the COVID-19 outbreak. The Market Snapshot, devel- oped in partnership with the DECT Forum, finds that as of May 2020, 30% of US broad- band households reported one remote worker and 22% re- ported another adult was work- ing remotely in the household.

Brad Russell, Research Direc- tor, Connected Home, Parks Associates. “The combination of shelter-in-place, work-from- home, school-from-home, and other new from-home lifestyles has led many consumers to re- discover the value in voice. This opens new value for fixed-line telephony as many mobile net- works have struggled to keep up with the increased usage.” “We are delighted to work in partnership with Parks Associ-

such as the elderly, rural resi- dents, and lower income house- holds. The COVID-19 crisis has further underscored the value of traditional landlines, as the val- ue proposition for voice services has expanded to deliver more telehealth and work-at-home use cases.

“A renewed concern for the elderly, vulnerable, and socially isolated will drive appreciation of technologies that keep loved ones connected, cared for, and

Page 18

Hospitality: staying safe and legal

Hospitality is a huge contributor to the national economy, and the subject of innovation designed to encourage re-openig,

Distec and Vestel enhance digital signage capabilities

Technology solutions provider Distec has partnered with Ves- tel Visual Solutions to provide a complete digital signage solu- tion alongside existing technol- ogy partners. The new part- nership introduces a complete end-to-end solution to Distec’s digital signage offering and has opened up a new distribution channel for Vestel.

Distec provides a range of interactive digital signage solu- tions, including commercial grade touchscreen monitors and computers, Point of Sale systems (POS), digital signage players, interactive indoor and

outdoor kiosks, plus digital sig- nage software. This new part- nership adds non-touch large format displays to Distec’s port- folio, and it can now offer Ves- sel’s Professional High Bright Signage Displays (PDH Series) with sizes ranging from 43 – 55”. These fully customisable displays enable users to show entertaining and lasting images to customers, even in brightly lit locations. Vestel is the world’s number one producer of interactive flat panel displays and one of the top three global manufacturers of TVs and digital signage. The

The direct channel to the industry

Chis Moore. B2B Sales Manager, Vestel:

continued on page 5 Growth returns to Pro AV sales

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, people across the globe are reaching out via voice calls from home for both personal and professional reasons,” said Brad Russell, Research Director, Connected Home, Parks Associates. [Photo credit:

These conditions contributed to the recorded increase in voice and video calls reported by Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon. Globally, Deutsche Telekom, Virgin Media, and Orange Group also noted increases in mobile and voice traffic and increased strain on their networks. “During the COVID-19 pan- demic, people across the globe are reaching out via voice calls from home for both personal and professional reasons,” said

ates to show the continued rel- evance for DECT wireless tech- nology and the importance of reliable communication in times of crisis,” said Ruth Wilson, Chair Marketing, DECT Forum. In North America, the UK, and throughout the European Union, the number of fixed-line connections had been decreas- ing for a number of years due to shifts to mobile and VoIP call- ing, but the fixed-line is still an important lifeline for consumers


Logitech Tap for Microsoft Teams Powered by Lenovo ThinkSmart Edition Tiny

safe,” Russell said. “Telemedi- cine, remote patient monitoring, and independent living solu- tions will all require telephony support. Service providers and regulators would be wise to con- sider how fixed-line calling (tra- ditional and VoIP) continues to figure significantly in long-term network strategy and how new service bundles might serve the emerging work-from-home and eldercare markets.”

Pro AV sales are growing once again. This month, the AV sales index (AVI-S) reached 53.7, indicating growth for the first time since February. This represents an increase of 3.4 points from June, when the index’s 50.3 mark suggested no net change. It’s not all sun- shine and rainbows yet, as this month’s figure represents only slow growth. But the operative word is “growth,” and all signs point to it continuing. This month, AVIXA folded in questions from the week- ly COVID-19 Impact Survey which ran from March until the end of June. The top find- ing from the additional ques- tions is that panellists report a year-to-date revenue decline of 20.8% versus the same period for the previous year. Staffing was steadier, dropping 9.0%. Despite these big declines, providers show optimism for recovery, with a clear majority anticipating revenues to get

back to pre-pandemic levels by the end of 2021.

Second quarter GDP numbers came out for key markets, re- vealing the steep economic toll our world has paid so far this year. The EU statistical office reported that the eurozone second quarter GDP dropped 12.1% from its first-quarter figure, which was already down 3.6% from the end of 2019. U.S. numbers released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis showed an even worse situ- ation,

with a second-quarter

drop of 32.9% on the back of a 5.0% first-quarter drop. The silver lining of these figures is that they roughly matched ex- pectations. Economists and business leaders knew such massive declines were coming, so measures like equity markets did not significantly change in response to the news. In May, North America ex- ceeded the rest of the world by 10 points. In June, North

America exceeded the rest of the world by 10 points. In July, 10 points again. This unchang- ing gap between the two geog- raphies means both are experi- encing the same trend. Given the positive nature of the trend in the AVI-S in recent months, the equality of change is a good thing. We do note that the gap places the two regions on the opposite sides of the neutral growth line. For now, our inter- national respondents are still undergoing slow contraction, while our North American ones are experiencing growth on av- erage. Given current trends, the international side should reach growth territory in September, though August is possible.


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