I am getting very excited about the large number of good Indian Screen Networks that are cropping up at the moment. Many people thought that China was to be the next big market but as I predicted not necessarily so or at the very least it will be a two horse race with India in the lead (methinks) and China coming in (hey! I don’t even think that China will necessarily come in second – but that as they say is another story).
What is interesting in India is how well the Antipodean digital signage vendors are doing. Australian and New Zealand businesses are spending a lot of quality time in the country (and have signed up some choice partners already) and are taking a lead in deployments. Whilst the US and Canadian vendors have looked at Europe and spent valuable time in an already crowded market place they may wish to look further afield for the really big retail rollouts!
Future Media will initially roll out 1,000 screens in over 35 Future Group stores in the top six metros of India as the start of a planned network of 10,000 screens.
I have mentioned Future Media before. They are a go ahead company – they do have the advantage of being a big retail owner but that should not detract (that, like Tesco’s) the pioneering spirit that they are showing in the retail arena. IBM and Cisco should take note of the sheer size and aggressiveness of these rollouts.
Future Group owns Pantaloons, Big Bazaar and Food Bazaar.
I haven’t yet seen CampaignManager from Ryarc Media Systems which is being used by Konzern Infotech (the local integrator) for these rollouts but I can say that even one of Ryarc’s competitors said how good a product it was.
My one hope is that the content does not let this and other Indian networks down. I have seen some of Future Media’s online content and it is truly awful. If they copy the current trend of re-purposing and using online (web) content in say 5 second slots as many others in the UK and Netherlands are doing now, the network will be awash with colour, loud and become a giant hallucinogen (buy maybe that is what they want!).
India looks like it might lead in the sheer size of its rollouts but it is important that they take on board the lessons learnt in Europe and the US over the last 6 years and spend time and money on quality content.