Wallboard Software Integration Makes Color E-Paper Displays A Little Bit More Like Regular Digital Signage Screens

March 25, 2024 by Dave Haynes


E-paper displays operate largely on the fringes of digital signage activity because what they can do and how they are managed are both limited, but the US-Hungarian CMS software company Wallboard has completed development work that pushes the possibilities of the new-ish Philips color e-paper displays being marketed by PPDS.

The Wallboard integration of Philips Tableaux integration makes the energy-miser color displays a bit more like other smart displays on a digital signage network, albeit with the very distinct limits on static images and zero motion. The Tableaux displays, like smart digital signage displays, has built-in intelligence (in this case a processor running Android).

Wallboard and PPDS say the key advances are:

My knowledge of how e-paper displays are managed and updated is pretty limited, but in general, this display technology has mainly been used in the context of digital signage for applications like meeting room displays and mass transport schedule update signs.

Industry adoption of color is still in the very early stages, in part because it is still emerging technology, but also because of cost. A color e-paper display is going to cost 9X-10X as much as a color LCD monitor of the same general dimensions, and will only support still images. There would be some long-term cost offsets because of reduced energy consumption, but going down the e-paper path is likely going to be because end-users have sustainability missions or mandates, or at least want to signal to customers, staff and the community that they’re making green efforts.

Wallboard suggests a good use-case is something like a poster showing a bank’s key interest rates – something that’s changeable, but only very periodically.

Sharp NEC’s competing color e-displays shown at ISE this year also have system on chip smarts on board.

Here’s a video with Wallboard’s Hungarian co-CEO Robert Simon walking through what’s been developed …

PPDS says its Wave device management tools are compatible with Tableaux displays and are being expanded with more features. The company also has other software partners working on integrations and enhancements.


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