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BrightSign players drive university signage and IPTV networks

ETH Zurich university has installed 120 BrightSign XD media players in two networks to provide signage to direct visitors and staff through the campus and upgrade its lecture facilities.

ETH Zurich is using 75 BrightSign players to drive a campus-wide digital signage network, and 25 to deliver video and IPTV services to its lecture theatres. The remaining 20 players are located in a new Student Restaurant to show a description and an image of the food being offered. The BrightSign XD1030 and XD1032 players were supplied by BrightSign’s Swiss distributor Media Solutions.

The digital signage network players drive Panasonic projectors and 40in, 55in, 65in NEC or Samsung monitors located in reception areas and other public areas to provide information to students, staff and visitors. Content is stored on the University’s own servers and managed by communication officers in each department. The screens display promotional videos, lecture schedules and information on upcoming events.

A further 25 players drive projectors in the lecture theatres. They are part of the infrastructure of the theatre, and are fully integrated into the touch control panel in each room. Lectures taking place in one theatre can be streamed live to other theatres on the campus through the players, allowing the University to scale capacity easily for popular events and lectures. They can also be used to play back video content during lectures to support teaching. The University has 85 lecture halls, and is planning to install a BrightSign player in each one.

The University has also implemented an IPTV service, with 45 channels multicast to the players. A few channels are pre-configured on the touch panels in each theatre, and can be selected at any time. During major sporting events the University streams live television through the players into the theatres.

The network was designed and installed by Armin Brunner, head of multimedia services at ETH Zurich, supported by Daniel Regli of Media Solutions. It replaces and extends an existing network of Windows-based players.

Brunner commented: “BrightSign is really perfect, we have never had any problem with stability with these players. You can switch the power off and on at any time without risk of corrupting the Hard Disk Drive. We no longer have issues with Windows updates, errors or pop-ups. The new network is a lot less trouble than the previous network.

“We decided to use the BrightSign Network Enterprise Edition and host content ourselves to improve the speed of delivery. We trained the relevant person in each department on using the network to manage content, and they now find it a very powerful and effective resource.”

BrightSign digital signage media players