Software is a critical element needed to manage and control any video wall system. We’ve outlined what you need to know upfront to make the right selection.
Consider who will use the system before you choose the software to manage it. What functionality do they need? How familiar will they be with the technology itself? Displays in conference rooms and auditoriums are often operated by first-time users. In these cases, a user-friendly interface and intuitive functionality are key. In control rooms or operations centers with more experienced and/or technically-savvy operators it’s important to select software that provides the necessary features, but is still intuitive and easy to use.
If your workflows divide responsibilities between several operators then you need a software platform that supports multiple users. If your team handles sensitive data then you should consider a permissions-based interface that lets administrators control viewing, editing, and sharing rights on an individual basis. This allows management to set boundaries around the content sources and display regions that each operator accesses.
If you plan to use your video wall system to deliver presentations then make sure you choose a software meant for presentation-building and delivery. Some platforms allows the user to build and save various content layouts they can later present on the video wall, either one-by-one or played automatically. More basic interfaces only support real-time content placement.
A video processor works in tandem with video wall management software to route selected content to the desired area of the display canvas. Knowing your overall content sharing goals will help you determine the right processor for your needs.
If your display wall is meant for mission-critical applications that requires real-time content control, you’ll need a processor that supports this type of dynamic interactivity. However, if your system will play automatic, pre-programmed content, you’ll want to choose a processor that supports digital signage playback, distribution, and content management.
The number of inputs a processor can accept varies, and determines the number of different content sources the processor can display at once. If you need to display a large number of content sources simultaneously, be sure to select a processor with a large amount of inputs and outputs. You should also consider a processor that accepts streamed content sources as well. The ability to display content from non-physical sources gives your team more flexibility.
Just like with displays, some processors are particularly well-suited for constant use. If your application demands extreme reliability and resilience, look for a processor that is designed for 24/7 performance. These processors are built for maximum reliability. They typically feature added fail-safes like redundant power supplies that allow the system to continue operating even if an individual component fails.
If you want to display content on more than one video wall or display surface then you need to choose a processor that can manage multiple systems at a time and accommodate different technologies.
Some applications use ultra-high-resolution content such as education, simulation, and digital signage. If your application requires this sort of capability then look for a processor or rendering engine that offers 3D-accelerated graphics hardware and places a strong emphasis on graphical performance.
Environmental factors like weather exposure, location, terrain, and more have a major impact on which video wall system will work best for your organization. Begin by assessing your surroundings.
As you plan your project you should identify any “environmental stressors” that might affect your video wall or it’s performance. Extreme temperatures, humidity, and vibration can quickly damage a display system that is not designed to withstand these pressures. If you’re planning to use your wall in a rugged environment, be sure to select robust and easily portable components. Some display types and processors are specifically designed for use in harsh environments.
Some video wall solutions can integrate with external technology such as conferencing systems, speakers, and lighting. Once connected to your video wall, these devices can be controlled through your system’s software. If these device control options interest you, be sure to select a solutions provider with proven success performing complex integrations.
Systems built in public spaces or corporate locations, like universities or lobbies, should be attractive and on-brand. Make sure you take the final look of your solution into consideration for these environments. For the best results choose a solutions provider that offers a range of customization options.
Making sure that you have a team on hand for assistance when you need it can help you get the most out of your solution and help ensure your system is always up and running for visualization of critical information.
A video wall is a major investment, so make sure you protect and support it for years to come. Choose a provider with a strong, long-term technical support program. Your plan should include easy access to knowledgeable personnel who provide training, can answer questions, and troubleshoot issues. If you use the video wall 24/7, then you need access to 24/7 support. Your plan should also provide on-site support options in the event that an issue can’t be resolved remotely.
If you plan to deploy your system in a highly secure or downrange location, access to your site might prove tricky for your provider. In this cases, your own personnel or pre-cleared contractors will install and maintain the system. Look for a provider that offers in-depth, hands-on training. This will prepare your personnel to support the system in the field.
We specialize in visualization technology for mission-critical operations and environments. The Command 360 video wall management platform along with our suite of customizable video wall products work seamlessly together to offer unmatched flexibility, scalability, and ease-of-use.