Most people missed this when Red revealed their new 4K player, but it's yet another significant aspect to this important announcement: you can use the player for Digital Signage. Why is this a big deal?
Let's quickly look at what we mean by Digital Signage.
Forget sad-looking displays in shopping malls and stations that either have fuzzy content that's never updated or a Windows error message. Digital signage is almost the perfect indoor advertising medium (indoor, because you need very expensive LED signs outside, and they're orders of magnitude more expensive, unless you have one of these).
Imagine, instead, eye-catching, gob-smacking displays in 4K that you simply couldn't walk past. Put one of these next to a static poster and there's no competition.
The beauty of the Red solution is that it will work with 4 ordinary monitors. It's probably not the best way to display 4K - you're always going to get the edges of the screens in the picture - but people are used to "video walls" in public places. Monitors are now so cheap that 4 HD screens will cost much less than a single 4K one - although it's not clear for how long.
So it turns out that 4K Digital Signage is actually a cost effective option!
A few things are not clear at this stage. We don't know whether the player has any kind of text output capability - most digital signage scenarios require text to be superimposed on top of images. Ideally, the Odemax network that's being used to deliver the 4K content to the player would have a client application to allow remote scheduling etc. Many of the best digital signage systems incorporate either Flash, WDM or even HTML5 capabilities.
But with Digital Signage - or digital advertising, even the simplest set-ups can be effective. This is an exciting new way to capture customer's attention as they fight their way through the festive shopping crowds, and because the player was designed with 4K playback at its core, for digital advertisers, this is an enticing prospect.