The Strangest Digital Signage Product I’ve Seen In Ages

July 19, 2012 by Dave Haynes

After a few minutes of just kinda sitting in front of my monitor, blinking, I’m ready to report on the Air-O-Matic Advertiser, which will pump up your business with a digital signage screen planted on top of a vending machine for deflated balls.


The Air-O-Matic Advertiser™ is an interactive vending machine that contains deflated rubber balls in a capsule, which are inflated using a needle and foot pump at the unit’s base. Organizations can brand the balls with their name and logo, and utilize the digital signage above the unit to display new products and services that are child-friendly. The hardware powering it is an HP all-in-one commercial-grade unit, which means that no external player is required. 

You drop in your money, a little ball drops out, you stick it in the inflating needle, and use a foot pump to inflate it – as way up above a monitor plays audio-enabled ads.


Advertising is really, really, really, really (did I mention really?) hard. Screens on BUSY vending machines struggle to get sold ads. Ad networks built around ATMs have failed miserably to demonstrate a working business model. I could see these things maybe having a role at special events, like company picnics and certain marketing launches. But even then, does a brand want its logo on something that bounces into traffic or creams a little kid in the face?


The company behind this – W&S Projects in Toronto – also has Ad Vision Ad Tagz it calls the first wearable media players (they’re not – we’ve all seen them at trade shows, for years).

One thing that does intrigue me, but has no supporting information, are what they call Ad Skyns – “new peel and stick technology that allows an organization’s current digital signage display to be wrapped with continuous logos. Easy to apply and remove, these Skyns leave no residue and allow users to peel and reuse them up to five times.”

Branding the screen bezels has an appeal (did that 10 years ago with Ontario Lottery), but the challenge there is ALL the different panel SKUs and ever-shifting dimensions. One size fits all is just an abstract notion.


  1. Frosty Sullivan says:

    This is a huge statement win for Scala. They have firmly put themselves in a dominant position in the high growth ad supported deflated ball vending market.

Leave a comment