Starting on January 1st, almost every industry is flooded with wrap-ups reviewing the year behind us and looking at the year ahead. Anyone can give a nod to the future, so what kind of credibility is there for predictions? We’ve decided to hold ourselves accountable using the Rand Fishkin model: for each prediction we have correct, we’ll award ourselves points; for each one that’s wrong, we’ll deduct. On January 15, 2015, if our predictions for 2014 were on par and in touch with the industry, we’ll give ourselves the go ahead to announce predictions for next year. After all, we don’t want to share information if it’s not well founded. With that, here’s what the NanoLumens team predicts for Digital Signage in 2014:
Prediction 1: Visual and aesthetic changes will trump compatibility and interactivity
2013 was the year of interactivity: Interactive kiosks and motion responsive displays were the big focus, showing end users how technology could work with their audiences instead of just showing images or video. While interactivity is a great asset, we think 2014 will have a much stronger focus on visual and aesthetic changes. Display manufacturers have worked tirelessly to create the flattest, slimmest displays on the market–Now, the only way to go is out… out of the box, that is. We expect to see a strong focus on new shapes, curves, and other playful and creative design styles. When we say “the shape of things to come,” we literally mean the shape.
Prediction 2: We’ll see more multi-display installations than single display designs
One IS the loneliest number, at least when it comes to digital signage. In the past, as companies have eased into incorporating digital signage, installations of one, large digital display have been common. In 2014, enough big players and smaller companies have tested the waters of using digital signage and are ready to take the plunge. With stronger confidence, we expect buyers to start incorporating more multi-display designs, allowing them more creativity with display size, message sharing, and to enhance engagement by connecting with multiple audiences at once.
Prediction 3: Life beyond 16:9 as a rule
Digital Signage has long been ruled by the 16:9 aspect ratio, keeping displays in the box, restricting content, and limiting options. In 2014, 16:9 will no longer be a restriction (it hasn’t been for NanoLumens for quite some time). Instead, 16:9 will become more of a standard size with other aspect ratios rising into availability and focus.