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Look for Brighter, Thinner Digital Signage in 2018

by | Alec Olson

Audiovisual (AV) technologies always have a bright and shiny appeal, but the newest displays and digital signage are literally as bright as ever. Images look so real that you want to reach out and touch them, and 2018 is the year some of the displays will even touch you back—sort of. Digital signage is a top trend to watch this year. Here’s why.

The Changing Market

Projector sales have been dropping, but lower prices on video displays have spurred an increase in their sales. AVIXA predicts display sales to grow 14 percent through 2022, so this year is poised to be a transition period for many users making the switch from projector to video display.

With lower prices, a wider range of organizations will be able to take advantage of digital signage, and they’ll be able to place them in more and different kinds of spaces. Greater accessibility also opens the doors to more customized applications.

By 2023, the digital signage market is projected to be worth more than $32 billion. Display technologies are constantly evolving—in some ways even faster than users can keep up with. Some of the features and technologies changing the display landscape are:

LED: Lighting the Way

Changes in LED technology, including OLED, QLED, and micro-LED, make it possible for displays to be brighter, thinner, and more energy efficient. Smaller pixels make LED signage suitable for indoor use. Lower prices will increase the possibilities for LED video walls.

The market for LED display and signage systems hit $56.5 billion globally in 2017. Trends for 2018 point to more of the same. (BBC previews some of the latest tech to be shown at CES 2018.)

Looking Ahead, from 4K to 8K

4K displays are becoming the standard but 8K displays are gradually being introduced and are poised to take their place in the market — at some point. Whenever that is, both 4K and 8K displays have an abundance of pixels. Like other display technologies, the prices on 4K are dropping. With 4K becoming more mainstream, research shows the 4K display market will hit $372 billion by 2020.


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Up-and-Coming Technologies

There are many other technologies and capabilities that will affect the display and digital signage industry in 2018.

In 2018, you’ll also see more displays that are:

  • Transparent: The transparent digital signage market is projected to grow more than 28 percent between 2017 and 2021. Users can see through these displays while also seeing what is shown on them.
  • Thinner: You may see thinner — even paper-thin — displays.
  • Haptic: See — and feel — more haptic and “mid-air” haptic displays that feature tactile interfaces, making digital signage a more immersive experience. In some cases, users describe it as a feeling that the display touches them back.
  • Curved: Expect to see more curved digital signage in more places. Some organizations are already using curved displays around columns and corners, shaped like logos, and more. This year will see these curved screens go larger and clearer in even more spaces.
  • Intelligent: The internet of things will allow smart signage to gather intelligence about individuals and the environment. Digital signage can then display more relevant, personalized content to viewers as well as more opportunities for interactivity.

What’s Next

There’s a lot happening in the display and digital display industry, and there’s never been a better time to invest in these solutions. They’re clearer and brighter than ever, and you get more bang for your buck.

This post is a part of a greater series that looks at tech trends as we enter 2018. In our next post, we explore how virtual assistants are changing the workplace and the home. Read more here.

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