Commercial display companies are always and understandably looking for ways to differentiate their products from other manufacturers that make, to most eyes, pretty similar-looking versions of the same thing.
So it was interesting to read news that Taiwan-based BenQ has announced the launch of what it touts to be the world’s first digital signage display series to be Pantone Validated.
The designation means the displays meet standards for color accuracy across print and digital. Some brands (the one most cited is Coca Cola and its specific red) have their own Pantone colors and are very concerned and insistent that marketing materials precisely reproduce the colors.
The Smart Signage Series, says BenQ in PR, will assure on-screen color fidelity and matched interoperability with Pantone-qualified color production devices. The first display from the series to be released is BenQ’s SL6502K. At 65” diagonal, the display achieves 4K UHD resolution and with the Pantone Validated qualification, offers breath-taking true color visuals to captivate viewers.
“BenQ now provides a color-consistent, end-to-end solution,” says Conway Lee, President of BenQ Corporation, “from design and production via monitors to in-store deployment and broadcast via digital signage software for retail display integrators, fashion designers, product brands and design studios who trust the Pantone system to deliver accurate colour production.”
“The universal Pantone language of commercial color allows creators to specify exact colors, and the Pantone Validated mark reflects the ability of the BenQ Signage Series SL6502K to reproduce the full range of these Pantone Matching System (PMS) colors,” says Iain Pike, Partner Business Development Director at Pantone. “We are excited that BenQ is the first company to develop a Pantone-supported signage editing suite, paired with a Pantone Validated digital signage display for this rapidly-growing market.”
My knowledge of Pantone doesn’t extend much beyond the basics of knowing what it is, so I can’t really say if this is a solution to a big industry problem, or an interesting but not-all-that-demanded feature that sets the product apart.
This CNET piece suggests laptop manufacturers have already been jumping on the Pantone Validated thing and putting stickers on products.
As the writer suggests: “The number of people who care about how accurately a display renders the colors of the Pantone Matching System (PMS) is far, far smaller than the number of people who’ll just be impressed by the logo because they’ve heard of Pantone.”
That said, color accuracy is a good thing and might really, deeply matter for some brands.
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.