The biggest department store in the world is now, not surprisingly, turning into the biggest retail digital signage project in the world. Or at least looks like it is.
I had about an hour before heading to NYC JFK on Thursday so I zipped down to see the renovations I had been hearing about Macy’s on 34th Street. I knew they were doing a big re-model and that digital was a big part of it. It was almost shocking to see how big a part of it the digital displays are, and it should make any vendors in the ecosystem feel a little better about the future in retail.
When I got in this space I could walk through a big department store like this and see a screen or two, truly just here and there. The reno’d Macy’s gives a sense of how digital display is now integral to fashion and cosmetic retailing. Screens are everywhere, and these are BIG screens.
The fit and finish of things is a little suspect, as are some of the decisions around technology used (low rez LEDs that absolutely need more rez) and content being run. The big wow factor entry off Herald Square – that runs up side walls and overhead – really misses the mark, I think. The visuals in the film strip are too numerous and small to connect with people zipping in and out.
But, overall, this was very impressive and encouraging. Content you can fix, and you can also design it to suit crappy resolutions. The project was done by CRI and GableVision.
Here’s some snappies I took …
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.