Four Royal Caribbean cruise ships – the newer ones that are the size fully loaded container ships – are now using screens on robotic arms for entertainment.
The cruise line’s Quantum Class ships – like the Spectrum of the Seas – have lounges with these dancing screens, using ABB robotics arms.
The first ones went in about five years ago, but I don’t recall reading about this until now.
A roboscreen, says ABB in PR issued when these things first went in, is a graphical screen mounted to the arm of an ABB articulated arm robot, which creates a unique viewer experience by bringing virtually unlimited, 6-axis movement to the video media. The Two70° RoboScreens feature six ABB IRB 6620 robots, each holding a 100” diagonal Daktronics LED screen. Housed in the ceiling while not in use, during shows in Two70° the RoboScreens will extend down on the gantry to a position above the stage, displaying unique video and imagery while performing choreographed movements, all custom produced for the specific performance.
Developed by Andy Flessas (aka andyRobot from Robotic Arts) in conjunction with ABB, RoboScreens first gained prominence in 2010 when five large models travelled the globe as main stage props for the Bon Jovi Circle Tour. They have since added visual intrigue to a concert tour by Kis-My-Ft2, a Japanese Pop band; the Las Vegas house show for deadmau5, world famous music producer and performer; and the Ultra-Music Festival in Miami. The RoboScreens being installed on the Quantum Class ships will be the first on any sort of moving vessel.
They are undeniably eye-catching, and the content well done. The robotic arms are designed to do the same set of moves over and over and over again, precisely, on factory floors. So this, while it looks incredibly elaborate, was probably, relatively, simple.
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.