Cisco Blogs

Flat Panel TV Sprawl – Wasted Opportunity?

- February 20, 2009 - 1 Comment

I have always been struck how flat panel TV’s suddenly became the definition of ‘technical’ and it seemed like EVERY business had multiple monitors usually just displaying ‘the news’ or something. Sports Bars are of course the very epitome of sensory overload but we have seen these benefit my experience at the dentist, where I shop, my hotel, etc. What you DON’T see however is a true appreciation for the value of the asset hanging on that wall. Why would you want to just display content for entertainment purposes in a very random manner (often running ads that benefit the TV network you are sitting on vs. your own objectives) when you could not only tailor the content specifically but also use these same assets to improve training, communication and a myraid other options limited only by your imagination? The follow interview with Greg Shonting is based on the demo he was providing at the NRF (National Retail Federation) show in New York recently. We were talking about the digital signage…something I think has huge upside and potential for many businesses…well beyond just retail of course. So what is involved in making this happen? The digital signage solution is part of a suite or family of solutions Cisco refers to as DMS or the Digital Media System. In a nutshell, DMS is designed to allow you to create, manage and publish content over your network.The marketing approved description: Bring a human touch to business by connecting with your customers, employees, partners, or students anywhere, at any time. The Cisco Digital Media System is a flexible and comprehensive solution for digital signage and desktop video that makes it easy to create, manage, publish, and access high-quality digital media for compelling communications.As mentioned before, this goes way beyond retail, you have financial services, education, government, healthcare and as mentioned in the video, safety and security.There are really just four components involved for DMS – 1. Digital Media Encoders, 2. Media Manager, your interface to the system – publish, schedule, manage, etc… 3. Media Players (hardware endpoints…think of something akin to your cable/sat box at home…but it can handle HD live and on Demand, motion graphics and dynamic content. 4. Video Portal – the software interface that an end user would access from the desktop. And in case you have not already invested in too many displays…we can get those for you as well! LCD Displays – 40″ and 52″…I could be mistaken but I believe these displays are a result of what Cisco decided to self-manufacture when we could not get exactly what we needed for the life-like Telepresence displays. You don’t have to use our display’s obviously…my argument is that you need to get better usage out of the displays you already have.Does some of this sound like overlap with things we already do? I sure think so…and I can’t claim to have it all figured out just yet – Check out the MXE 3000 (Media Experience Engine)Does it compliment DMS? We are making that claim of course. I love what we can potentially do here as the MXE sounds like the perfect middleware between a myriad of content types and a myriad of devices we would want to make that content available on. In fact, watch my old friend from Austin, Munawar Hossain, Product manager walk you through it.As I stated earlier…I don’t have all this figured out. I hope I got most of it right. What do you think? What am I missing here? Do you find this stuff of value?. What questions would you like me to explore further? Should we ‘ring up’ the product manager? What do you want me to ask them?Weigh in with your comments below.Also – for you Social Media Mavericks out there….join us! Our list of social media outreach vehicles is below:Follow the Cisco Interaction Network, home of TechWiseTV: All the Videos: CIN Blog: Fan Page: & Jimmy Ray on Twitter: Ray has two popular blogs:Networking Geek to Geek (Network World) Sheriff (Cisco Learning Network) Boyd

In an effort to keep conversations fresh, Cisco Blogs closes comments after 60 days. Please visit the Cisco Blogs hub page for the latest content.


  1. Hey Dude,Really your thought will be a great mainstream for those who are looking for Wedding Photography. As it sounds very good though i would like to light it at the wall of my facebook.