Monster Asian technology manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry, also known as Foxconn Technology Group, has announced its funding of a newly-formed startup aimed at bringing augmented reality into digital signage.
Foxconn Executive Vice President Lu Fang-ming did an augmented reality presentation, showing his image dynamically integrated into real-time graphics, at a demo Wednesday at Taipei’s main passenger rail station. Taiwan is the home of Foxconn, though much of its million-plus workforce is in China, assembling devices like iPhones.
The advertising project at the station uses some 200 4K displays made by Sharp, the Japanese display giant Foxconn acquired this year. The screens are controlled by a CMS from the startup, called LinkOOH.
“Foxconn has been trying to integrate software and hardware services over the past few years,” says Lu, quoted by Nikkei Asian Review. “Sharp is a leading industrial display provider in Japan…and we will use the best display technology available [for the AR advertising business].”
Foxconn, the report says, has invested $1.58 million to set up thenew company to develop the augmented reality advertising business in Taiwan, using Sharp displays.
A separate report in DigiTimes says:
Linkooh has cooperated with Taiwan Railways Administration to install several different-sized public displays at Taipei Main Station and uses its augmented reality (AR) technologies and multimedia platform to enhance the ways that advertisements are displayed.
The company has also used 200 55-inch Sharp-made Ultra HD-quality displays to improve consumers’ virtual experience.
Linkooh is a subsidiary wholly owned by Foxconn and in addition to railway stations, the company is also looking to partner with exhibition halls, airports, department stores and bus stations.
The Taipei Times reports:
The system is made up of more than 200 55-inch commercial digital signage display panels with 4K resolution made by Sharp Corp, which is controlled by a cloud-based platform developed by LinkOOH.
“The system at Taipei Railway Station was installed at a cost of about NT$80 million, and we expect LinkOOH to break even before the end of next year,” Lu said.
Multimedia advertising is rapidly evolving and the field has been converging with other digital trends, such as social media, he said.
LinkOOH provides a platform for brands, sales channels and creative agencies to join forces in forming a new advertising ecosystem, Lu said.
Participants in the ecosystem can take advantage of LinkOOH’s cloud-based platform to deploy an interactive marketing experience for the large crowds that make their way through the railway station each day, Lu said.
One of LinkOOH’s first clients is Uni-President Enterprises Corp (????), which is promoting a new beverage with an interactive display that invites passersby to play a fruit-chopping game on the giant displays by triggering motion sensors.
While applications currently deployed on the system are still very basic, Lu said that LinkOOH and Hon Hai aim to provide partners with a full array of tools, such as augmented reality technology, contextual and location awareness, and big data analysis to create new and compelling advertising experiences.
Lu also outlined plans to integrate various “smart” capabilities for the platform that would selectively broadcast advertisements according to passersby demographic and preferences, as well as delivering tailored promotional discounts to maximize customer stickiness for brand operations.
“We hope to connect the many screens used by consumers, whether they are on desktops, mobile devices or large digital signs,” Lu said.