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Network Display and Digital Signage

More and more digital display advertising is being seen in shops, supermarkets, hotels and even outdoors in stadiums and arenas. What we mean by digital signage and networked displays are the large LCD or plasma displays mounted on a wall or within a kiosk/counter to show either static or video-based advertising content.

The two core aspects of any digital signage solution are clearly the display that is viewed by the user and the computer that drives this display. Early digital display solutions used full size PCs connected to third party TV screens. Today however the same or better results can be created using a much smaller embedded computer that fits within a single screen enclosure. This provides a huge size benefit to the display solution and enables it to be used in scenarios where a PC based solution is not suitable, such as in hot or hostile environments, away from mains power or where space is limited.

Product Showcase (Trumpeter)


We have been working on a number of display advertising projects involving the development of a high-resolution display system for use in retail or corporate advertising. One of the more ambitious has been a fully mobile solution, enabling a full panel display to operate and be installed within transport services such as buses, trains and planes.

In developing this solution Bluewater has been careful to make sure that the design allows different resolution displays to be used with a single main controller board. This has resulted in the controller board being completely detached from the actual display panel and provides a remarkably small unit size when compared to a traditional PC. The board is no larger than a standard paperback book.

The photo shows how a Bluewater Rig 200 development kit was used to fully prototype the solution. It allows content to be displayed at full TV resolution and also has the power to show full motion video (based on MPEG encoding). Information to be displayed can either be generated directly on the unit via software, or sent to the device via a fixed or wireless (WiFi) network. When installed on a bus this means that display content can be updated based on where the bus is located and without the need to return to a central base.