PORTL Puts Swiss Timepiece Execs At Shanghai Trade Show, Without Leaving Alps

I’m a big fan of what PORTL is doing with its remote display system, for use-cases like new luxury watch launches and demos done by a Swiss firm for a recent trade show many time zones away in Shanghai.

The timepiece firm IWC used PORTL’s display and software system to have its CEO and rock star watchmaker present and interact with buyers in real-time at a show called Watches and Wonders.

The system is essentially a large format transparent LCD display fronting an enclosure you could liken to a shower stall, which makes a person appear in life-like size, in 4K, in real-time – based on a video feed with that person in front of a studio green screen.

It’s not a hologram, but through a lot of thinking and experimentation with illuminating the LCD and the way people and their shadows are captured, the visuals look VERY good.

The presentation on the exhibit hall floor allows the company to have key execs be a part of a show they’d normally, I assume, be at in person.

This is a compelling idea right now because of travel restrictions and health safety risks, but even when things normalize I could see this sort of thing being used a lot more for virtual personal appearances at product launches and conferences.

It might be really difficult to get a CEO to allocate the three or four days to fly to China for a 45 minute chat on a stage, but getting that CEO to hop in a car and run over to a studio for a hour would be workable, if the studio was set up for green screen and video capture and a PORTL system was set up at the venue in China to run that feed.

I did a podcast with PORTL’s founder in Jan. 2020:

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