Toronto-based TTUFF Technologies has embedded 3G Machine-to-wireless communications in its new series of Open Pluggable Specification modular PCs – a solution that it says, removes much of the cost and complication of running widely dispersed digital signage networks.
Using 3G M2M networks can cut typical broadband connection fees in half, remove landline installation costs and hassles when digital signage networks are deployed, and make internet data transfers possible in all but the most remote areas of a country.
“From the many years we’ve been supplying rugged PCs to the digital signage market, we know connectivity has always been a big pain point for operators,” says Doug Wismer, president of TTUFF Technologies. “M2M is the ubiquitous answer to all those deployment sites where bringing in DSL or cable is impossible or very costly. M2M is also infinitely more simple and reliable, not to mention cheaper, than two-way satellite.”
In Canada, TTUFF is working with TELUS Communications, one of the country’s largest telecommunications firms, on a custom offer that incorporates a 3G modem directly in the latest TTUFF OPS units.
“TELUS sees a lot of opportunity for M2M in the digital signage and digital out-of-home advertising sectors,” says Jim Senko, vice-president, small business marketing, TELUS. “The partnership we’ve developed with TTUFF perfectly aligns with operators who’ve told us they want to control costs, increase reliability, and both unify and simplify their connectivity solution. This does all of that.”
Similar arrangements are being finalized for coverage in the US through Sprint and their M2M Solutions group.
The TTUFF OPS series has 3G cellular network data modems embedded in a modular PC chassis, enabling digital signage network deployment teams to easily install the PC with the display. The design eliminates the requirement and cost of data modems, routers and additional wiring.
The OPS standard refers to small, slim and modular PCs that can be readily loaded in openings designed in commercial LCD panels of multiple display manufacturers, including Samsung, NEC and Philips.
“This is immensely appealing to a number of different sectors,” says Wismer. “Getting broadband into retail and food service environments can be very difficult because of the sea of asphalt between the roadway and lines, and the shopping mall. Unless the site is in a very remote area, all that’s really needed to establish the data connection and get a digital sign operating is power.”
Specializing in the supply of small form-factor digital signage drive systems, TTUFF Technologies offers a diversified range of large screen LCD and Plasma display drive systems.