MTI has been working around the edges of the digital signage retail sector for many years, with software and displays that popped up content based on shopppers lifting up and inteacvting with its core products – secured tethers for merchandising displays.
When you are about to stuff that sexy Samsung amoled smartphone into your pocket and bolt for the door of a consumer electronics retailer, there’s a good chance it is an MTI alarmed tether that keeps that from happening.
Now there’s word from Portland (and MTI is also a client) that the company has a new, more broadly offered digital signage offer – built in-house and designed for retail.
What’s interesting is the hardened, totally solid state, button-less box that plays full HD (no price point, but told it is low), and the baked in integration with social media. That part is not all that hard to do, but then again I don’t see it being done out there by more than a handful of vendors.
Popular social media tools that influence how people shop are integrated directly into MTI’s new ReAct digital signage platform, a retail-ready solution that layers an engaging, consumer-facing experience on top of technology that’s hardened for shop floors and tailored to real-world store operator needs.
ReAct will be previewed Jan. 10-11 at the National Retail Federation’s Big Show in New York.
The content-rich, socially-enabled and personal buying experiences that are transforming shopping on PCs and mobile devices also fit easily into retail environments using MTI’s new Intuition ReAct platform. Retailers who use social applications like Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare to communicate and interact with consumers on PCs and phones can now use ReAct to integrate those content feeds into interactive digital displays running right in store aisles. Simple two-way elements, such as “Like” buttons, can be integrated into touch-enabled screens, helping shoppers make buying decisions and store managers refine selections based on local tastes. The ReAct system also enables the use of emerging technologies like 2D QR codes and digital coupons, and easily plugs into retail back-office systems and retailer websites to mine and potentially react to data.
“ReAct’s ability to leverage social media interaction and emerging web and mobile technologies goes right to the core of what retailers want and need today,” says Thaine Allison, MTI’s VP Products and Systems. “We built an open, future-ready platform that can shift with the marketplace, and we used a technology design we know, from all of our experience, meets the everyday operating demands of retailers.”
Based in Portland, Oregon, MTI is an acknowledged leader in the development and delivery of reliable, secure interactive merchandising solutions for retailers in North America and globally. Hundreds of thousands of MTI units, particularly in the consumer electronics sector, keep demonstration products secured and powered – converting the shopping experience from trying items to buying them.
The heart of the MTI-designed and built ReAct platform is the ReAct Player, a small, special-purpose media player that has no moving parts, can be updated over networks or manually, and plays both 2D and 3D HD files – seamlessly, automatically switching between formats.
“Years of experience developing merchandising technology, and listening to our customers, taught us what was ideal for a digital signage solution in-store. Despite the scores of companies out there with products, we didn’t see anything that really met the challenge,” says Chris Remy, CEO of MTI. “So we developed ReAct.”
The company points out features such as:
No buttons or controls on the player itself
No moving parts and 100,000 hour operating life
Auto-detection and adjustment to 2D and 3D signals
The platform running it is web-based, with WYSIWYG tools. It’s a SaaS model and ReAct DDS includes agency-quality customized templates for retailers to enable fast, cost-efficient updating of in-store offers and promotions. The MTI team is also developing platform-specific apps and widgets that will enhance content and make it increasingly dynamic. ReAct DDS makes integration with third-party services such as social media easy and largely automated. MTI’s experience with back-office retail systems also means digital screens in stores can tap into a wealth of data stored in information systems, or located deep into retailer websites.
“A typical retail website has a lot of secondary information about products that can be really valuable in helping shoppers make final buying decisions,” says Helen Stonhill, MTI’s Marketing Director. “ReAct can be easily set up to pull relevant content and make a touch-screen a perfect tool to not only let a shopper research an item – maybe check for other available colors – but then get them ready to purchase.”
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for some 14 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He’s based near Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast.