A tradition at the Digital Signage Summit Europe (DSSE) is the Global Round Up Panel, which discusses the most important outlooks and trends. Here is what the experts are expecting this year.

Towards the end of the second and final day of the 14th DSS Europe, the stage was set for a quintet of panellists to take the opportunity to draw conclusions from the conference whilst sharing insights and forecasts for the Digital Signage market. On the podium this year: Chris Mcintyre-Brown, Associate Director, Futuresource Consulting; Dan Goldstein, Chief Marketing Officer, AVIXA; Mariusz Orzechowski, General Manager Central South East Europe, NEC Display Solutions Europe; Stephen Gottlich, Senior Vice President, Gable; Vladimir Kozlov, CEO, DigiSky and Simon Jackson, Digital Signage Organisation (DSO). The session was chaired by Florian Rotberg, Managing Director, invidis consulting.

How do the experts rate the market, what are the key trends, and what new insights were there?

For Chris Mcintyre-Brown, the data available in the first two quarters of the year shows that 2019 promises stronger growth than 2018. One can trust his assessments; after all, Futuresource delivers the data that invidis uses when it comes to the global market for professional visualisation solutions such as screens, LED and projection. When asked how the issue of Brexit affects the industry, Mcintyre-Brown pointed out that his market research develops models for the different conceivable scenarios in order to quickly adjust forecasts, if necessary.

He also reminded us of the smouldering trade conflict between the US and China, which itself brings a great deal of uncertainty to the market. In general, the industry shouldn’t forget about China. The cradle of the LED market, for example, is still underestimated by many in its innovative strength. LED continues to enforce considerable change upon the market in many ways.

Despite its increasing internationalisation, the industry always manages to throw up some regional peculiarities, as was shown by the observations of Vladimir Kozlov and Mariusz Orzechowski. The latter reported that although the Polish market had grown substantially, he nevertheless emphasised that this market is small. Although his colleague Kozlov works in a very large country, the lion’s share of his projects can be found in Moscow and St. Petersburg. For roll-outs in more remote areas – there are nine time zones in Russia – some hardware suppliers with global supply contracts would reach their logistical limits. There have been a number of cases where it was cheaper to send a new device than to attempt servicing. It should still be stated that the last few years have been very difficult for some verticals in Russia.

Joining Stephen Gottlich on the podium was a representative from a US-American company that approaches Digital Signage very much from the perspective of the customer. Gable still offers analogue solutions in the field of signage, which is somewhat ironic given the success of major roll-outs of its own digital solutions, which have been in its portfolio for a few years. Furthermore, in the past six years, contacts have been established and developed with a Chinese supplier.

Dan Goldstein reported that AVIXA was observing some new trends. The topic of DXP is currently hugely important for software manufacturers, and it is here that he expects strong momentum in the market. How strong? Goldstein said that in 2024, Digital Signage for the display industry will be the most important of the pro markets, and AVIXA will be monitoring its own market analyses accordingly. Quite some announcement.

NEC’s Simon Jackson, representing the Digital Signage Organisation (DSO) on the podium, also considers LED to be one of the key current market drivers. He also mentioned that the vertical market for museums and exhibitions had been very dynamic of late, with virtually every new museum featuring an explosive use of various digital canvases. New digitalised car showrooms and corporate communications would also become more important globally. In addition he observed that there are, at present, still no truly global integrators. As an intermediate step, global alliances can be expected in larger numbers.

The panel was united in the belief that LCD displays should be available on the market much more cheaply in the future.