UCView Debuts Entry-level Platform
January 4, 2012 by Dave Haynes
LA-based digital signage software firm UCView has joined the ranks of companies competing for the entry-level to mid-sized business market with a bundle billed as dead-easy to fire up and start using.
One element of the pitch behind the SignEdge bundle – player and software – is that activating and using the platform for the first time and from then on just requires pounding in nine or 10 numbers into a web browser. The other proposition is that, unlike the other entry-level platforms on the market, this one actually does more than the very basics.
“We’ve invested heavily in the past two years to develop a solution for small businesses that is absolutely simple to set up, and then manage,” says UCView CEO Guy Avital in a release. “But we also ensured that the simplicity we designed in did not come at the expense of functionality.”
Avital says SignEdge has all the capabilities of the core UCView platform – which is intended for enterprise network accounts. His team stripped out all the technical terms and made the user experience entirely visual. “Our goal was to offer something that anyone – even if they didn’t know a thing about digital signage – could use with little or no training.”
My exposure to entry-level products is limited, but I do know many companies have a version aimed at all the small jobs. The ones I have seen were quite limited in capability (so it cannibalize sales on the core product). Something that is indeed simple to use but has a full set of tools and capabilities is a different spin. UCView has a pile of widgets bundled in that allow operators do a pretty good range of different things without, again, really knowing how they did it.
The bundle is priced at around $1K, all in.
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UCView’s Small Business-Friendly SignEdge Simplifies Starting, Running Digital Signage Projects
No IT skills needed with low-cost, rich-featured bundle that reduces technical set-up to a simple login; ongoing management affordable and easy with intuitive platform
NORTHRIDGE, CA – UCView’s new SignEdge service reduces the technical challenges of putting digital signage in a small business to plugging in a couple of cables and typing a short set of numbers into a web browser.
SignEdge is a simple, highly affordable bundle of a small PC and software that enables any small business operator to quickly and very easily start communicating with customers and staff using eye-catching, impactful video displays.
“It takes nothing more than typing one small set of numbers into a browser – even just using a smartphone or iPad – to get a digital signage network activated for a small business,” says UCView CEO Guy Avital. “We’ve invested heavily in the past two years to develop a solution for small businesses that is absolutely simple to set up, and then manage. But we also ensured that the simplicity we designed in did not come at the expense of functionality.”
There are numerous simplified, starter solutions for digital signage on the market, Avital explains, but they tend to have limited capabilities, don’t scale up in size efficiently and require monthly fees to use.
With SignEdge, end-users buy the hardware-software bundle upfront, and face no further subscription fees. Despite an unprecedented low overall cost, users have access to a powerful, full-featured content creation and management toolset that rivals the most sophisticated subscription and enterprise platforms on the market.
SignEdge includes all the scheduling, distribution and management capabilities of leading digital signage content management systems, but also offers a built-in content design and creation engine, advanced touch-screen and mobile marketing capabilities, and a growing app store offering more than 30 free tools for dynamic and auto-generated content, such as a QR code generator, Twitter and other social media visualizations, local messaging and menu board tools.
“We took all the capabilities that we’ve developed over the years for our core platform, for enterprise clients like retailers, and then stripped out all the technical terms and made everything visual,” says Avital. “Our goal was to offer something that anyone – even if they didn’t know a thing about digital signage – could use with little or no training.”
The SignEdge platform also fully supports multiple languages for all aspects of the operator user experience. Languages already supported include English, Spanish and French. Adding more languages, says Avital, is a fast, easy process.
Cost savings is a big driver behind SignEdge. A combination of chipmaker Intel’s budget-conscious Atom processor and Nvidia’s powerful ION2 graphics processor makes it possible to drive full HD off of the tiny, low-cost SignEdge media player. The player supports dual screen outputs (with different content on each display), making it ideal for applications such as digital menu boards.
The SignEdge player is also small enough to easily mount behind a display panel, or inside it, using industry-standard slots available on many monitors.
The SignEdge system is sold as a software-player bundle to easily connect to new or existing display monitors at venues, and will be priced at less than $1,000 USD, one-time. The software has also been tested and validated for use with integrated all-in-one networked panel PCs sold by major manufacturers such as LG and Samsung. UCView is also working on a fully integrated PC/display/software bundle.
Setting up a SignEdge digital signage solution is designed for absolute ease of use. The media player just needs to plug into a network cable at the venue, or auto-connect to the venue’s WiFi wireless network. Then an operator uses a browser – on a PC, tablet or phone – to type in a nine or 10-digit number string provided by UCView or one of its reseller partners.
If the activation numbers are correct, a login page comes up and users are ready to go with simple, intuitive tools for designing layouts and organizing and scheduling content. “Networking manufacturers have made it really, really simple for anyone to set up a wireless router in their house. What seems really scary for that is actually really easy now,” explains Avital. “We’ve taken that approach and done the same thing for digital signage.”
The platform is also highly flexible, running on all current Windows operating systems, as well as Linux. Management of a SignEdge system is available on any standard browser. SignEdge is now shipping. For more information, including demonstration videos and detailed specifications, please visit: www.ucview.com
UCView is a worldwide digital signage solutions provider providing top-quality digital signage application solutions and content management software that is not only reliable, but easy and efficient to use, and affordable to operate. The objective of UCView is to allow for the convergence between display owners, the advertisers, and consumers. UCView is responsible for the installation and support of thousands of systems across the spectrum of business industries, including retail, supermarkets, government, education, hospitality, and financial. UCView is a private company and its international headquarters and main manufacturing facility is located in Northridge, California.