Sony Retail Project

Convergent installs digital signage system

Convergent Media Systems, a Sony Company, chose SpinetiX HMP200 Hyper Media Players for a huge digital-signage rollout in Sony consumer stores across the USA.

Sony’s new future-forward retail store design has been devised with the goal of providing customers with an interactive, entertaining shopping experience in which different Sony technologies are showcased on a harmonized, integrated platform. The products featured range from 3D displays to PlayStation video-game consoles, Internet TVs and even music from artists signed to Sony’s record label.

Convergent Media Systems specializes in delivering digital-signage systems that enhance the customer experience. The company’s Kris Konrath, Director of Marketing, explains:
“Sony wanted a solution that would allow every display in the store to act as a digital-signage screen, with a choice of independent content zones or full-store synchronization. They also wanted to integrate digital messaging into the in-store audio, to give customers a harmonized audio and visual experience featuring Sony artists. We were also asked to provide enhanced tools for the sales staff so that they could control the system locally, so we designed an Android App that allows sales associates to use their mobile phones to control the system to display custom content, based on the needs of customers.”

Each store features a long wall of screens known as the Bravia Wall, which showcases specific products or technologies. Each Bravia screen is connected to a SpinetiX HMP200 Hyper Media Player, with all players integrated and time-synchronized with one another. This allows Sony to display independent content on each screen or synchronized content across some or all of the screens.

Convergent has also used the HMP200’s ability to use dynamic content feeds to create a number of bespoke enhancements to the store design. These include the ‘Digital Fact Tag’ – a visual element that appears in the bottom right-hand corner of each screen and shows the model number, product features, technical information and pricing. The data is dynamically pulled from a pricing and information data source and displayed in real time onto each screen. As information changes, the Fact Tag is automatically updated. Using the Android App, sales staff can select which screens are displaying the Tag, and which are not.

When music from Sony artists is playing, the name of the artist, the song title and the album title can also be programmed to appear on selected Bravia displays. And, using a function called Dynamic Input Change, the content on 3D TVs in the store can be changed automatically to highlight a particular offering as soon as a customer puts on a pair of 3D glasses, creating a uniquely entertaining shopping experience.

Serge Konter, Marketing Manager, SpinetiX, comments: “With their very compact size, low energy consumption and maintenance-free performance, our Hyper Media Players are perfect for video-wall applications such as the Bravia Wall in the new Sony Store design. With its built-in SpinetiX Fusion Software, the HMP200 provides a very straightforward way of publishing information, audio and dynamic content to each screen – without the need for the bulk, heat, and high maintenance associated with PC-based digital-signage solutions.

“We are delighted that such a high-profile and high-tech company as Sony has seen the benefits of our technology, and that our channel partner Convergent Media Systems has done such a great job in creating a tailor-made system that truly provides an integrated multimedia experience for Sony’s retail customers.”

Convergent’s Kris Konrath concludes: “By leveraging emerging technologies, our integrated digital-signage platform provides exactly the messaging flexibility to highlight specific products, services or content that Sony was seeking. Shoppers can preview, test, compare and unlock the full potential of Sony offerings, while also interacting with trained and knowledgeable staff.

“Exceptional attendance and customer response to our initial project installations have spurred plans for continued rollout of our system to other Sony Stores worldwide, and we look forward to taking delivery of many more SpinetiX Hyper Media Players to meet the demand from this prestigious and cutting-edge retail project.”