A small German company has launched a WordPress plug-in that enables the hugely popular blog and website content management system to be used as a digital signage CMS.
Ondamedia GmbH says its plugin, called Digitalsignagepress, makes developing and managing small signage networks easy and capable of running off any HTML5-based device, like system on chip smart screens.
Digitalsignagepress is both a plugin and theme, and users would run a sign network off the same CMS millions of companies and individuals use for their online presence. To get running, you’d install WordPress on a web server, install the plugin and activate the right theme.
The attraction is that WordPress is a free CMS with a vast ecosystem, including hosting, backup and support specialists. Using the plug in costs 149 Euro to start, and then 49 EU after year one for annual updates, etc.
Some of the features of the plugin include 100 templates in landscape and portrait, a full editor to design templates, and support for embedding things like YouTube and Twitter.
The company also says it has what it calls screen management, which I assume means some degree of device management, and video wall support.
The company describes what it is up to as a world’s first, but there are at least two other efforts out there using WordPress for digital signage.
A guy named Nate Jones, based in Chicago, has been at it for several years. Here’s a post about that.
And an Italian software development firm has been working on a project called D-Board for more than a year, and has customers up on a beta version and working on version 1.1 of a a whole system built around WordPress.
There’s also an effort to use Joomla – another open source CMS – for signage.
Software companies with years of investment in developing signage solutions will roll their eyes at the idea of WordPress as a legitimate CMS, and it’s not anything I’d recommend to corporate clients. But this site routine serves 300-400 page views a day for a single post about free digital signage software options. There’s a big user base out there that is conditioned to getting software for free (or under a “freemium” arrangement), and web traffic tells me that user base is growing.