Pixel Inspiration is a digital signage company whose clients include some of the most well-known retail brands in the UK. Founded in 2004, the company is now regarded as one of the UK’s leading implementers of digital signage; delivering advanced, data driven digital media solutions nationwide.Delivering signage solutions which provide signage hardware, content management and a wide range of services is every day work for Pixel Inspiration. At the cutting-edge of digital, Pixel employ a connected signage model, typically using their customers’ fixed line connectivity to remotely and efficiently manage and deliver content. Access to the customer’s network is not always possible though, due to potential security and performance risks associated with providing third party access to primary networks responsible for running business-critical applications, such as Point of Sale. In addition, some locations cannot be physically reached by a fixed line, and the expense of installing one outweighs the likely return.
“As network security evolved and digital signage estates became more widely distributed, a fixed line-only solution was no longer going to be viable in all locations,” said Nikk Smith, Technical Director at Pixel Inspiration.
This meant that Pixel needed a private secure network that could run in parallel with their customers’ core networks, which they could use to distribute the latest content to the whole estate.
The ChallengeSecure, reliable connectivity for Pixel Inspiration’s widespread digital signage estates for a rapid air gapped network deployment, providing remote content updates and flexibility to their customers.
The Westbase.io Solution+ Architecture workshop to define best practice for mobile and hybrid networking deployments
+ Small-form router and antennas for simplified integration within digital signage units, plus connectivity from a choice of operators
+ Ongoing support, including site surveys and antenna consultancy for optimised connectivity at each site
+ Technical support and consultancy to optimise connectivity at all sites
The Results+ Secure connectivity that can be installed easily in any location – just add power
+ Complete network control
+ Potential barriers to sale, installation and management now removed for Pixel Inspiration
+ Ease and scalability of the solution has seen it rolled out to 100’s of sites across the UK
When looking for an alternative solution to fixed line to connect their digital signage, Pixel approached Westbase.io to explore what non-fixed line options might be available.
After specifying the requirements, Westbase.io put together a solution recommendation for Pixel Inspiration that would best serve their needs – delivering reliable connectivity across a cellular network. The solution initially used a Sierra Wireless Raven XE router, and later upgraded to the Sierra Wireless AirLink ES450. Both are small form factor making them perfect for installation in digital signage units, and they provide reliable and secure access to the Internet, with the upgraded ES450 model offering superfast 4G LTE cellular access, cloud management and a 3 year warranty.
“Westbase.io were able to provide us with a whole connectivity solution, including a gateway device, antennas, connectivity and private network, which meant we were able to source our full requirements from one supplier,” said Frank Emerson, Managing Director for Pixel.
“Our solution for Pixel Inspiration has enabled them to deliver content updates to widespread digital signage estates without the need to rely on access to their clients’ connectivity. Instead they use a secure network that’s entirely within their control, easy to implement, and highly scalable” said Sacha Kakad, Managing Director at Westbase.io.
As part of Pixel’s solution, Westbase.io also provides ongoing guidance to ensure optimised connectivity. For example some sites don’t always achieve a signal with the standard antenna solution, so Westbase.io will help by conducting a site survey and installing the most appropriate antenna to ensure an enhanced signal. The result is a solution which delivers secure, high-speed connectivity that can be installed easily in any location.
8 Years, 100’s Of Sites, Plus More To ComeSince integrating the Westbase.io cellular connectivity solution in to their signage units Pixel Inspiration have rolled the solution out to hundreds of sites. The solution has removed any potential barriers to sale, installation and management for Pixel.
“Working with Pixel Inspiration for over 8 years, we are delighted to have become a trusted partner. With the vast possibilities of an ever changing digital landscape, we look forward to working with them on more exciting digital media projects in the future,” added Sacha Kakad, Managing Director at Westbase.io.
“The Westbase.io networking solution has proved to be very reliable and effectively overcomes any situations where we cannot get ready access to existing connectivity, one simple connectivity solution neatly integrated in to our signage units has made it easier for our clients, and allows us to deliver the best digital experience without relying on their network.” – Nikk Smith, Technical Director at Pixel Inspiration