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Digital signage lights up John Lewis's new home in Dubai

John Lewis has raised its profile in UAE by opening a concession at Singapore-based department store chain Robinsons & Co’s first shop in Dubai.

The 15,000 sq ft John Lewis space has been trading since the end of March, when Robinsons first opened its doors, but details of some of the technology used there and across the wider 200,000 sq ft four-storey location were released last week.

Screens driven by 47 networked BrightSign players are central to the marketing of the various brands in store, which also includes an Ikea concession. The digital signage has been created and installed by Digital Communication (DigiComm), and consists of a video wall, LED screens, brand columns, commercial screens and way finders.

Ibrahim Bakhrani, director at DigiComm, commended the reliability of the BrightSign players.

“We have been using BrightSign players for many years and they really are fit and forget units – they need no management or updating and failures are almost unheard of,” he explained.

“We are now in talks with Robinsons about providing a similar installation for a new store they will be opening in Malaysia.”

LED screens welcome shoppers at entrances on each of the three levels, with shoppers presented with Robinsons branding and information about current promotions in store, while a video wall is in place to introduce visitors to the John Lewis homeware area.

Within each department, DigiComm has located columns with screens attached on either side to promote specific brands, using video content provided by those individual companies. Each floor also has a VIP checkout area where digital screens are used to display Robinsons’ messaging and advertise in-store promotions to the venue’s wealthiest customers.

Touchscreen way finders are also located on each floor, driven by helping customers locate the various departments and specific brands, as well as providing information about products and services.

DigiComm said it created a cabled and wireless LAN network to deliver content to the players. Many of the players are Wi-Fi enabled to simplify connectivity, while content is managed in an in-store media room which uses BrightSign’s BrightAuthor software on a central PC to control content on all screens across the three floors. 

Bakhrani remarked: “Initially the DigiComm team managed the content, but we were able to hand this function over to the store staff very quickly.

“We provided training and support to help them get up to speed, and the drag and drop interface within BrightAuthor proved to be very intuitive and straightforward so that non-technical staff were quickly comfortable with it.”