From Today's DigitalSignageToday.com
In an earlier article "Unaccounted and Digital Signage" (High Resolution November 13, 2009, I argued that the LCD makers should produce a dual mode LCD platform, one that is capable of performing both as digital signage and as a consumer TV. LG actually has offered such a product and has now gone a step further, the important step, in offering digital signage displays through an electronics retailer. This solves several important problems both for the LCD maker, for brick and mortar retailers, and for the consumer.
With TV volumes stagnant and with increasing sales through on-line retailers, digital signage sales offer a new category and new volume to the retailer. Digital signage LCDs, with all of their unique features such as extra brightness for outdoors, offer a new up-sell opportunity for the retailer to home TV set consumers. For the digital signage purchaser, availability of digital signage displays through local retail outlets offer immediate availability of both displays for new installations, spares availability, and lower overall distribution costs. For the TV Set consumer, digital signage in retail offers the opportunity to take advantage of some of the digital signage features, some of which may not be so obvious.
I have previously argued on one of the digital signage LinkedIN blogs that since most large TVs are delivered (either by purchase on-line or by brick and mortar store delivery) to the home, Individual packaging for TVs was somewhat wasteful. With retail availability of digital signage, presumably, some of the signage will come in multi-packs and I would expect 55" and larger TVs to be available in multi-packs as well.
Beyond that, as I have related elsewhere, At Digital Signage Expo, I asked one of the display industry luminaries if digital signage could ever be as big for the display industry as TV. He gave me a blank stare and could not answer. With US growth rates (in number of screens deployed per year) exceeding 30% through the recession, certainly going forward the volumes could be substantial. Channeling much of this volume through retail will re-energize the entire TV category and lead to increased innovation as new features that are first introduced in commercial product, find their way into the home. In the end, the decision to offer signage through retail may be the biggest innovation in TV since the introduction of flat panels.