Jan 7, 2022 — Thanks very much to the Kiosk Manufacturer’s Association for joining us as an Industry Association Partner for the relaunch of the DSE show, March 22-24 at LVCC [and as exhibitor]. The DSE has been the most important industry event for the digital signage industry for 20 years and the Kiosk and Interactive Self Service technologies represented by the KMA share common challenges, opportunities and customers with our audience. We welcome the members of the KMA to join us at #DSE2022 as exhibitors/sponsors and attendees. Please contact me for more information. Contact info — [email protected] or 360-620-0232.
Denver 12/15 Digital Signage Blog – The kiosk association KMA recently served as media sponsor for InfoComm and AVIXA. Following up on that KMA is an association sponsor for the upcoming DSE 2022 digital signage tradeshow in Vegas in March. KMA also will be a participating exhibitor with a 10×20 booth #6906.
Craig Keefner, manager of the Industry Group said, “Interactive digital signage projects have been increasing every year from large wayfinding to spectacular convention center signage to smart city deployments to drive-thru menu boards. Half of the rfps in the our space are digital signage related. Expanded our coverage and involvement in signage only makes sense for our sponsors. We are happy to follow the lead of other respected groups such as Peerless-AV,Sixteen-Nine and TSI Touch in supporting this specific next generation digital signage tradeshow that our industry deserves.”
DSE has been the leading event for the digital signage industry for 15 years. Questex acquired the assets in early 2021, and will build on that legacy as the preeminent event and digital platform for the digital signage industry, showcasing innovations in technology, market applications and creative educational content.
Questex will combine its capabilities and experience as the leading information and events company focused on the experience economy with input from the industry including past sponsors, exhibitors and attendees to deliver an updated and renewed DSE for the industry going forward.
With an increased focus on reaching key end-user markets for digital solutions and experiences, DSE will harness other audiences and platforms in hotels, hospitality, travel, healthcare, entertainment, education, sensors and communications technology and more.
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Peerless-AV’s First Americans Museum of Oklahoma (FAM) installation. Visitors have an immersive experience and learn about American history through the lens of 39 Tribal Nations. The museum located in Oklahoma City put together a completely unique video wall display. From Digital-Signage.Blog
Peerless-AV, alongside Ford Audio-Video Systems, LLC (Ford AV) and Waystone LLC, designed a video wall solution that was not only technically feasible but also pushed boundaries in terms of creativity. Despite many challenges, the Peerless-AV team delivered the perfect mounting system and custom trim kit accessory around the sides of the video wall to give it an immaculate, finished appearance and meet the visual expectations of the museum’s visitors and maximize audience enthrallment.
The resulting, unique shape of the video wall is a visual delight, reflecting the character of the FAM and the playfulness of its designer, Courtney Myers. The inner rectangle space is visualized to be used as a place to put text or have animated characters popping in and out, tailored to the live performances planned to take place in front of this giant “backdrop.”
The content shared at the museum is fine-tuned to the video wall by internationally acclaimed New York media design company, Batwin + Robin Productions. Intelligent editing software provided by the company allows for content flexibility and creativity. Not only does this software allow the museum to quickly change content, but the museum can also utilize sections of the video wall to show different content, maximizing audience enthrallment.
FAM Director/CEO James Pepper Henry commented, “The giant dvLED video wall is more than we hoped for! Since our opening, the Xchange theatre, as it is now called, has become a popular venue for demonstrations, singing, storytelling, and fashion shows. The dvLED video wall adds a truly special element to shows and performances with original and inspiring motion backgrounds, and also provides a means to thank our patrons for their support in making FAM a reality.”
For over 80 years, passion and innovation continue to drive Peerless-AV forward. We proudly design and manufacture the highest quality products, including outdoor displays and TVs, dvLED and LCD video wall systems, complete integrated kiosks, professional carts and stands, and more. Whether a full-scale global deployment or high volume custom project, Peerless-AV develops meaningful relationships and delivers world-class service. In partnership with Peerless-AV, you are trusting an award-winning team of experts who will support your business every step of the way. For more information, visit www.peerless-av.com.
Editors Note – the feature image shows the founder of Olea Kiosks back in 2008. Sorghum kiosk for IBM Anyplace.
Zero Carbon Footprint, Green Kiosks, Fitness and Health Kiosks
We note developments in the green environmentally sensitive area. Many companies are adopting a more eco-friendly branding stance and using social mechanisms to inform users on their initiatives towards a more eco-friendly and healthy experience for users. Green technology is nothing new and health-concious kiosks are available in a myriad of functions from measuring to blood press, hospital check-in, medicine disposal and more. Pharmacies are experimenting with dispensing prescriptions.
Carbon footprint — we now have zero carbon footprint McDonalds restaurants. Who’s next?
What’s Behind the New Urgency Driving Sustainability Initiatives? – Link
Energy efficiency which is represented by smaller and smaller microclients and thin clients such as raspberry PI
Wellness kiosks that perform a multitude of checks which include blood pressure kiosks
Check-in kiosks for healthcare
Fitness self-service — some examples might be performing a certain number of aerobic exercises in return for vending voucher, or it could be pedaling on a kiosk inside a McDonalds while you eat your quarter pounder with cheese watching the digital signage news.
Self-service technology leveraging recycled materials, or assisting with recycling
EV charging for electric vehicles – a nice case study with pictures of Kohls, Now we have PEVs.
Experimental “green” kiosk back in 2008 with IBM when they wanted to show off the IBM Anyplace and its low power consumption. It had gotten some sort of approval at the time that was unique. Olea made the enclosure from a Sorghum board. Some group was trying to repurpose the stalks from Sorghum into a board material so it wouldn’t go to waste. It looked neat but smelled like rotten hay bales. We ended up coating it in a lacquer of some sort to seal it off because of the smell.
Editors Note: We are in process of collecting photos, videos and comments on the show and will update this doc in the next few days. V1
The Kiosk Association exhibited at NRF 2022 this year. We expected fewer attendees for sure. Several factors contributed to that the major one being Omicron pretty much everywhere. Weather events included a big icy snowstorm. Many of the airlines canceled flights (1000 a day) leading up to the event including Southwest Airlines who suffered from a pilot shortage (many in quarantine and most of those unvaccinated).
Many of our members toughed it out (see the photos from the KIOSK/Posiflex booth) but some had to cancel due to COVID.
When the National Retail Federation’s annual trade show and conference opens today at New York’s Javits Convention Center, it will be missing several of its planned keynote speakers, a number of major exhibitors, and about 10,000 attendees who had been expected to attend before the omicron wave swept across the country.
But leaders of the trade group, who since the pandemic began have advocated for keeping stores open, and praised retailers for their ability to successfully navigate the challenges of Covid-19, said the time for shutdowns and virtual events is over.
NRF Return on Investment ROI
Usually, shows are measured in business impact and specifically leads. Our booth at 1606 was at the entrance of the lower level which is the best position on the lower level. There are multiple ROI equations depending on the company and the person. Our point of view is geared towards a kiosk manufacturer or component provider. As far as leads go:
If we normally received 200 leads in 2020, then in 2022 we received 25
Booth visitors are made up of A) those who seek you out, B) those who stumble onto you interested and C) those who stumble onto you just going through motions.
Our leads were A and B class
Retail customer interest likely represented 10,000 store locations. That’s good.
Attendee traffic for the entire show was rumored to be a seventh of usual traffic (40,000 is total from 2020)
The optimistic operative phrase for NRF 2022 is the quintessential “It only takes one”
The kiosk originally began as the town square notice board for the community to post notices. The usual reference in Wikipedia will call out Persia as the originating language for the word. What began as common ground notice posting location matured into RMUs (Remote Merchandising Units) that you see in malls or wherever. With advent of common internet they took on their electronic iteration in the late 90s.
OK, but what is a kiosk?
July 1994 from comp.infosystems.kiosks — well, I seem to recall having a discussion like this during the discussion phase for the group. If you’re asking me PERSONALLY what a kiosk is, I’ll answer as best I can, but I’d also like to see some other people’s responses. After all, my definition might be wrong — I’d like to find out.
My definition of a kiosk is a stand-alone terminal of some sort, usually surrounded by some sort of booth (but not always). Kiosks can perform many functions including transactional (electronic funds transfer) and informational (what hours are the Valley Library open?) and functional (print me out that Hallmark card I just designed). Much if not all of what a kiosk does is determined by it’s software. They can be network-connected or not, can have fancy video, etc. or not — it all depends on the software and how much effort the developers put into it.
There are also a number of hardware considerations, but I think these are something I’m not as strong on and will let others answer. -dknight
For the masses, it started with airline check-in terminals and photo kiosks (from Kodak and Fujifilm) and also ATMs.
For more frequently asked questions including “What is a kiosk” be sure and look over the KMA Global website FAQ. You will also learn under what conditions a burrito is considered a sandwich 🙂
Some General Observations
They allow interaction usually with touchscreen
Usually customers/prospects oriented
Click for full size image
Many are employee-oriented
Generally a touchscreen.
Either informational or transactional in nature.
Your typical kiosk today is very much different than those. They are self-service kiosks, usually electronic, and can be found in all walks of life. The form factor ranges from a mobile device to a tablet to a larger enclosures (usually metal but also plastic and wood).
Definitions of Kiosks
Our latest definition? A terminal that allows customers or employees to get information and/or conduct a transaction, without the assistance of a person. It may or may not have a touchscreen for example.
Here are some of the main categories for the modern-day kiosk.
In malls, events, tradeshows and other locations you have the RMU, which is a Remote Merchandising Unit. Point of Purchase fixture iterations. Many current self-service kiosk companies evolved from these units design and manufacture and continue to do a large business in these. Examples would be Olea Kiosk and Ikoniq (main business being RMUs).
It is generally interactive but not always.
It most often provides a computer (such as Dell Optiplex) and has a 17 or 19″ 5:4 aspect touchscreen (between 7 and 84 inches). 2020: more likely an AIO and at least a 22 landscape.
Most often than not it is unattended. Companies like to stretch this into a quasi semi-attended mode where employees offer to assist.
It is a standalone enclosure in the most common iteration.
Airline Check-In Kiosks – pioneered by Kinetics and others. Major vendors include NCR, SITA, and dwindling IBM. They have also moved into the baggage area.
ATM Machines – Historically it has been NCR, Fujitsu, Nautilus, Triton, IBM with Wincor Nixdorf and the ISOs (Independent service operators).
Electronic kiosks – this is the big category. It basically includes all categories which can be bill pay kiosks, kiosk software for lockdown, financial kiosks and more.
Internet Cafes – sometimes a keyboard can’t be beat. These are one of the originals and helped educate the masses on using the Internet everywhere. We used them all the time when we would visit London, England.
POS Terminals – includes customer facing POS terminals whether for entering loyalty number.
Food Order Kiosk – McDonalds kiosk is prime example. Order your own burger made to your preferences.
Gaming Kiosks – the military uses these for letting the soldiers relax (and train) at the same time.
Parking kiosks – whether on the street or in the garage
Outdoor kiosks – all kinds.
Hoteling – this is where office workers work at same building but can sign up for any desk for the day. Larger companies experiment with this and in this age of BYOD it is relevant.
Information Kiosks terminals – can be as simple as barcode lookup in grocery aisle or online “showrooming”. AKA Interactive kiosk.
Interactive Digital Signage – a contradiction in terms but Digital Signage often is a large touchscreen and offers Content Management Services as well as Advertising. The touchscreen provides major ROI component.
Immigration and Security Kiosks – found at airports as well as Border Control. These units typically utilize biometrics.
Registration kiosks for loyalty and membership.
Gift card kiosks such Coinstar Gift Card Exchange.
Retail kiosk – this can be many iterations. The latest ones are beginning to introduce Beacons and Facial Recognition for recording demographics and traffic patterns and customer flow.
Gift Registry kiosk – one of the originals and still going. Our teeth were cut developing the Bridal Registry and Baby Registry kiosks for Target. Multi-generational marketing at its best (kids shop where Mom shopped)
Tablet kiosk – typically used for registration and quick lookup they have the advantage of being small and can be place at eye level.
Vending – these can add nutritional information mandated by the government. They can dispense sandwiches, coffee and a large range of merchandise (Zoom is a pioneer).
Pharmacy kiosk – medicine prescription dispensing kiosks are becoming more popular.
Lockers – picking up your merchandise from Amazon or Fedx or UPS.
Charging kiosks – need to charge your mobile phone? There are kiosks for doing that.
Coin KIosks – the most famous is Coinstar.
Music, Movie and Media download kiosks – get your DVD on USB now
DVD kiosks – still going with Redbox and others. Locations and demographics are important.
Hospitality – hotel check-in kiosks
Healthcare – patient check-in kiosks
Telemedicine and Telehealth – whether at the supermarket or at corporate headquarters, remote healthcare structures are hybrid of RMUs. These extend into home monitoring and follow up for post operative patients to maximize results (and government incentive rewards).
Marijuana & Cannabis – one of the emerging markets with its high use of cash, security and new multiple form factors such as edibles.
Photo Kiosk – still going strong and one of the original heavy hitters. Kodak at one point had over 60,000 in place.Prison kiosk – video visitation and more
Social kiosks – interacting with your friends at wanna-be-seen locales becomes fodder for Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The payback is demographics.
Kiosk Software – lockdown software or Windows Kiosk Mode software is very popular. PROVISIO and KioWare are prime providers but versions for thin clients, Chrome Kiosk, and more are available.
Survey Kiosks – can be as simple as a 4 button “How Was Your Experience?” device (we like those) or a tablet. Surveys are better being short to improve response rate.
Wayfinding kiosk – despite GPS enabled mobiles navigating a large structure can require clear instructions whether consumer or corporate.
Wine Kiosks – As a recommendation and selector function these do quite well. Experiments in dispensing wine were plagued by being poorly regulated and operated.
So what might be the definition? Here is one:
Typically a computerized terminal used by the public or employees for services.
We’ll continue to add details and more information in the future.
We don’t know about you but all the talk about conversational AI seems to us, to be mostly talk. There is an irony in that observation. The Alexa and Google Mini’s, and Pixel Assistants are woefully inadequate at understanding nuance or building any simple suggestions based on repeated tasks. They change the volume and never remember what we have done a dozen times before. There is no persistence. It’s like carrying variables thru a multi-step web process. You would think they might have some form of cookies so they have some historical context, but they don’t. Still just the other day we saw where Checkers is rolling out AI-assistants.
We can talk with a Rochester, NY accent or an Okie accent or we can talk like we are from Tyler, Texas. Along with query variations and intent there are also multiple dialects.
There are roughly 30 major dialects in America. Go here if you’d like a see a map of the various regions with an example of what each dialect might sound like. On the East Coast, we have many very small regions, with slightly varying dialects in each one. Just like New England and the East Coast itself, it is more densely populated, with little pockets of immigrants from other countries. For this reason we have Boston Urban, Bonac, New Yorker, Hudson Valley, Pennsylvania German-English, Inland Northern and North Midland, all within about 5 hours driving from each other. Once you start going west, many of the regional dialects will span 3-4 states, with Texas alone having just two: Southwestern and Gulf Southern. The entire West Coast will only encompass three dialects, and these areas are also known for having more of a neutral accent: Pacific Northwest, Pacific Southwest, and some Southwestern (just like in Texas).
Google Adwords has expanded its backend and now allows segmenting search based on Intent. What is it the user hopes to accomplish?
The latest version of the model, Uni-TTSv4, is now shipping into production on a first set of eight voices (shown in the table below). We will continue to roll out the new model architecture to the remaining 110-plus languages and Custom Neural Voice in the coming milestone. Our users will automatically get significantly better-quality TTS through the Azure TTS API, Microsoft Office, and Edge browser. <
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KMA focuses on QSR, Fast Casual self-order systems and EMV 2018 status. New association website kma.global for Accessibility & ADA
EASTLAKE, Colo. June 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — KMA, also known as the Kiosk Manufacturer Association, is happy to present the quarterly update with news from the QSR world and the new association website launched (//kma.global).
Seven features went up this month. The theme is QSRs, Fast Casual & EMV. The NRA show just completed and both McDonalds and Wendy’s CEO gave meaningful interviews post-show. That naturally created a lot of interest. In addition, newly launched is the association site for the Kiosk Manufacturer Association (KMA). This will serve as the repository for Accessibility and ADA regulatory recommendations and a collaboration point for the ADA Committee and ADA Working Group.
EMV Update for 2018. Sixteen industry experts predict the Attended, Unattended and Semi-Attended status of the market. There are also some behind the scenes tips on some of the major model designs. Thanks to KioWare the EMV sponsor [//m.kioware.com]!
Next up is a look at cash and coin in multiple verticals including new QSR iterations. Limited space, limited markets and limited budgets and ultimately making it pay for itself. Time to transaction really is money. Privacy and GDPR are around the corner editorially.
There has been a lot of news these past few weeks. Especially the Wired article on how Square designed their own iPad solution. Concept drawings included in the story about the process. Serving customer and employee at the same time is a big challenge. The robotic kitchen restaurant in Boston video is a techno-marvel, so check it out. Blended whiskey, blended food and now strategically blended “fill in the blank” coming soon to a specific market demographic.
Accessibility & ADA – There is work coming up for the committee and working committee. The intent is to help harmonize the similar US and European specs (e.g. EN301). Establish guidelines for accessible voice interaction. Alexa and A.I. are already creeping into the equation. To facilitate collaboration and presentation //kma.global is now the primary association-only site. The official title for the association is Kiosk Manufacturer Association or KMA. New data research from Frost & Sullivan and IHL will release from kma.global.
In other news – Kansas City began the smart city transformation process. San Diego issued an RFP for a complete remake of its transportation system and is looking to the 22nd century. Also for multiple countries. Broward County has a big Digital Signage and Self-Service project. Those are noted on the Kiosk RFPs and News Watch pages on Kioskindustry.org.
Finally here is the wrap on current Editor Picks and thanks to supporters
Ron Bowers Retires From Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. After 35 Years
Senior Vice President of Retail Technology Business Development Ron Bowers will retire from Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. on July 31, 2018.
GRAFTON, WI – After 35 years as a member of Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc.’s staff, Senior Vice President of Retail Technology Business Development Ron Bowers will retire at the end of July 2018.
Bowers began with Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. in December of 1983 as a sales coordinator and quickly moved into an account executive position the following August. His passion for retail, technology solutions and point of purchase displays helped him develop relationships with well-known companies like Allstate Insurance, Irving Oil, Eagle Foods, Kroger, Miller Brewing, KEO, MacGregor Golf, Arnold Palmer Golf, Nancy Lopez Golf, Nicklaus Golf and John Deere.
Bowers’ projects often earned gold Outstanding Merchandising Awards in the display industry, including a Display of the Year award from the POPAI organization in 1992 for his work with the John Deere shop-in-shop program.
In 2005, Bowers was promoted to Senior Vice President of Retail Technology Business Development and used his vast experience and superb relationship-building skills to generate new project opportunities for Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. His expertise concerning the point of purchase business has made him a well-known thought leader in the industry, and he’s been invited to serve on countless speaking panels and interviewed for numerous trade publications over the years.
“Ron’s professionalism, drive, loyalty, passion for sales and the relationships built with clients and associates were the foundations for his success,” says Mike Mayer, President of Frank Mayer and Associates., Inc. “His infectious positive attitude should be an example for all of us to follow, and he’ll be missed by clients and associates alike.”
Bowers’ retirement plans consist of spending more time with his wife, children, and grandchildren as well as pursuing his hobbies of golf, reading and retail technology writing.
Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. is a leader in the development of in-store merchandising displays, interactive kiosks, and store fixtures for brands and retailers nationwide. The company helps retailers and brands utilize the latest display solutions and technologies to create engaging customer experiences. Visit www.frankmayer.com for more information.
CONTACT: Cheryl Lesniak, Integrated Marketing Manager
Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc.
1975 Wisconsin Ave., Grafton, WI 53024
(262) 834-1489 | [email protected]
North Sterling State Park has a new feature to make it easier for visitors to purchase a parks pass.
The park is one of eight state parks to receive a new self-service kiosk so far. These outdoor kiosks are also solar kiosks and provide ticketing and registration via 3G/4G modem.
“Not a lot of people have exactly seven dollars [for a daily park pass] in their pockets,” said CPW Statewide Business Operations Coordinator Kirk Teklits. “As far as customer service goes, being able to pay by credit card is definitely a desirable service option.
15 stations are currently installed at nine parks and more will be coming later this summer.
“This helps our state parks become more modernized,” Teklits said. “Most of the kiosks run on solar power, provide multiple sales channels to our customers, and help our staff with money collection and counting. It also helps our law enforcement officers quickly determine who has bought a pass and who hasn’t.”
Teklits said there have already been more than 800 daily passes and 55 annual passes sold through the kiosks since the first ones were installed June 13. The kiosks accept Visa, Mastercard and Discover cards.
Outdoor Kiosks Notes
We asked for some more background information on the outdoor kiosks and learned deployment began in June 2018 with 15 stations. And already the other parks have requested their own solar kiosks. Business at the kiosks has been very good so far and expanding to all the parks in Colorado is just a matter of time (and money).
Each kiosk costs around $6K is our estimate and looking at the kiosks it looks like Parkeon is the vendor. They have a 3 year contract we are guessing. The original RFP went out last quarter of 2017. That’s 8 months from spec to deployed.
Kiosk History – A Fond Farewell to Point of Purchase Expert Ron Bowers
Written by Katie Kochelek of Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. Original full article.
July 17, 2018
It isn’t often you come upon those people whose enthusiasm for their work and industry is so outright contagious. But if you know Ron Bowers, Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc.’s Senior VP of Retail Technology Business Development and a long-time thought leader in the point of purchase industry, you know exactly what I mean when describing his infectious optimism for all things technology and display-related.
I knew the moment I walked in to Ron’s office my first week at Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc. that he’d be a wealth of knowledge. And as a new employee with limited education in this field, I found myself scribbling notes at lightning speed about topics ranging from retail’s new horizon to how the Internet of Things will help brands and retailers offer the personalized experiences consumers crave.
Click for full size. Nice desk. What year is that Pop Times cover?
I left Ron’s office feeling inspired to research as much as I could and often referred to him with questions as I started writing more blogs and white papers for the company. He always cheerfully obliged, providing important insight on topics based not only on his many years of experience, but also because he is diligent at keeping up-to-date on all the latest news pertaining to our business.
If you need to understand the latest technology, he’s the guy to find. (In fact, I often tell him he’s a better millennial than those of us who can technically claim the title.)
So, when Ron recently announced he would be retiring at the end of July, the news was met with countless congratulations as well as a tinge of sadness from the many who will miss discussions with Ron on the trade show circuit and beyond.
Consequently, it only seemed appropriate to dedicate our July blog to the man behind an era. I sat down with him to discuss his history in our industry as well as what he foresees for the future.
Q: Tell me a little about your history here at Frank Mayer and Associates, Inc.
A: I’ve been here for 35 years, starting in December of 1983 as a sales coordinator and moving into an account executive position the following August. In 2005, I was promoted to Senior Vice President of Retail Technology Business Development and have gotten to use my experience and networking skills to generate new opportunities for Frank Mayer and Associates.
Q: What clients have you worked with over your time here?
A: I’ve worked with countless clients. The long list includes: Lucky Eagle Foods, Kroger, Miller Brewing, Pabst Brewing, Olympia Brewing, IBM, Lexitech, Aviotex, Media Port, Nicklaus Golf, MacGregor Golf, Arnold Palmer Golf, Nancy Lopez Golf, Allstate Insurance, AM General/HUMMER, Kohler, Garmin, John Deere, Kelloggs Cereal, Leupold, Cabela’s, Medicine Shoppe, Int., Solo Health, Starbucks, Unicru/Kronos/SureID, Irving Oil, Agilysys Systems, Big Lots, Briggs & Stratton, Dave & Busters, Seven-up/Dr. Pepper, OkiData, Familymeds, Giant Eagle, KEO, Go Charge, Intellectual Technology, Kraft Foods, LeapFrog, and Master Lock.
Q: Any favorites?
A: I really enjoyed working with John Deere and was lucky enough to see our work win a Display of the Year award from the POPAI organization in 1992 for the company’s shop-in-shop program. I’d also include Miller Race Car and Nicklaus Golf as favorites.
Q: What has been your favorite aspect of working in the point of purchase industry?
A: I truly enjoy helping a new product make an impact at retail, thus leading to client success. And truth be told, it never gets old seeing my displays at retail locations when I take my wife, kids and grandkids shopping.
Q: How have you witnessed the industry change over the years?
A: Back when self-service was in its infancy, display and kiosk programs often sought to offer convenience and novelty to retail. Now, retailers and brands are really capitalizing on the interactive and omnichannel experience. Consumers are starting their buying journey online and continuing it into the store and at the point of purchase. Marketers must now offer kiosk solutions and design around a total experience to make sure they’re meeting these customers’ desires.
Q: What do you see for the future of point of purchase?
A: I’m optimistic about the future of point of purchase and self-service. It will be all about the connected consumer and personalizing the experience to each person’s very specific personal preferences. Technology innovations will further evolve in order for this to continue.
Q: What’s on the horizon for retirement?
A: I’d like to spend more time with my wife, children and grandchildren, of course. Golfing and reading also make the short list, and because I can’t let go that easily, I plan to also continue writing about retail technology.
Microcom Corporation Releases Ethernet for Model 814M, 8.5” Wide Thermal Kiosk Printer for Healthcare, Wayfinding, Boarding Pass, Weigh Scale, and Other Applications
Lewis Center, OH, March 7, 2018 –Microcom Corporation is pleased to announce that customers can now purchase our model 814M wide thermal kiosk printer with Ethernet. This option allows customers to communicate with the printer at any distance. It also gives the printer the flexibility to be controlled by a locally connected host in the same enclosure or directly by a remote server at a distant location.
Wide Thermal Kiosk Printer
According to Andrea Flowers, National Accounts Manager for Microcom, “When we first released the 814M, it quickly became clear that customers wanted to interface with this printer using Ethernet. There are only a few 8” wide kiosk printers on the market that offer Ethernet and we are excited to be one of them.”
Microcom’s Model 814M comes in a standard configuration that will meet the needs of our clients without overwhelming them with choices. Some of these standard features include: 300 dpi print resolution, heavy-duty cutter, presenter/retractor capabilities, USB, Serial, and multiple sensor functions. Our movable media mount can hold an 8” OD thermal paper roll that is equal to roughly 1,100 sheets of paper!
About Microcom Corporation
Microcom Corporation is a privately held leading US manufacturer of specialty-use thermal label, ticket, kiosk, and wristband printers employed throughout the world. Microcom delivers innovative business management solutions for the transportation, healthcare, medical, mail sorting, fare collection, cinema/event ticketing, airport, casino, gaming, industrial, warehousing, pharmaceutical, distribution and specialty thermal printing industries.
Interactive touchscreens are quickly becoming a key player in the kiosk world. Businesses ranging from fast-casual restaurants to health care facilities and mall makeup stores are finding uses for touchscreen-based kiosks, offering services ranging from food ordering to patient check-in to complexion matching.
Combination of several reports (including Frost & Sullivan, Gartner, and IHL) + our own KI analysis. Hybrid POS checkouts and ATMs are not included unlike most reports..
The latest of the many reports forecasting the growth of the kiosk industry predicts the market will increase at a 9.7 percent compound annual growth rate, reaching $88.3 billion by 2022 from $46.1 billion in 2015. Drivers of that growth include increased customer’s interest towards self service, development in the retail and entertainment industries and innovations in touchscreen display and glass technology. The retail industry holds the lion’s share of the market, with about 40 percent of the overall revenue.
The growth of touchscreen-based self service hasn’t been without its challenges, though. Foremost among them has been the issue of making that technology available to all users, including those with disabilities. Another has been the expanded form factors such as tablets on the low end and large 85-inch touchscreens on the high side. That’s a shift from the mostly 17-inch and 19-inch screens that dominate the ATM, airline and POS self-checkout precursor worlds.
The compliance conundrum
Example of navbar on outdoor ticketing kiosk. Click for full size image. Courtesy Olea Kiosks
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that about 19 percent of the country’s population, or about 57 million people, have some form of disability. Those include 8.1 million people who have difficulty seeing, including 2 million who were blind or unable to see. In addition, about 7.6 million people have impaired hearing. Roughly 30.6 million have problems walking or climbing stairs, or use a wheelchair, cane, crutches or walker, and 19.9 million people had challenges lifting and grasping. This includes difficulty lifting an object or grasping a pencil (or pressing buttons on a touchscreen interface).
To ensure those with disabilities can enjoy the same rights as everyone, in 1990 Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The law was designed to afford protections against discrimination similar to those of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in several areas, including employment, transportation, public accommodations, communications and access to state and local government programs and services.
For a business that incorporates kiosks into its operations, that generally means that a kiosk needs to be useable by all of its customers, no matter what their physical challenges may be. In many cases meeting that standard is easier said than done.
Click for full size
“ADA concerns are pretty much the same concerns that one would have for any type of a consumer self-service interactive solution,” said Ron Bowers, senior vice president of business development at Grafton, Wisconsin-based kiosk vendor Frank Mayer & Associates. “Some individual deployments are only adhering to the accessibility-by-wheelchair aspect.”. “Some individual deployments are only adhering to the accessibility-by-wheelchair aspect.”
Unfortunately, those basic accommodations can result in a business overlooking more than 35 million potential customers.
It’s worth noting that a large percentage of customers in wheelchairs also suffer from physical impairment.
Some of the biggest challenges kiosk deployers face is the degree of interpretation that must be applied to some of the regulations. How many accessible units and what level of accessibility constitutes acceptable access? Another is new regulations and retrofitting existing units can be problematic, said Craig Keefner, manager for Olea Kiosks.
“Complicating retrofits can be the issue of recertifying for UL,” Keefner said. “One change to the overall machine can require the new configuration to be recertified. If Walmart has to change all of its self-checkouts, that’s a big change.”
To help add clarity to exactly what kiosk deployers must do to be ADA compliant, in mid-September the Architectural and Transportation Barriers and Compliance Board released a final rule for electronic and information technologies used by federal agencies as well as guidelines for customer premises equipment and telecommunications equipment, including kiosks. The Access Board is an independent federal agency devoted to accessibility for people with disabilities.
A sample of the guidelines for kiosks outlined in the Access Board rule
In general, devices with a display screen shall be speech-output enabled for full and independent use by individuals with vision impairments.
Speech output shall be provided for all information displayed on-screen.
Where speech output is required, braille instructions for initiating the speech mode of operation shall be provided.
Devices that deliver sound, including required speech output, shall provide volume control and output amplification.
At least one mode of operation shall be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist. The force required to activate operable parts shall be 5 pounds (22.2 N) maximum.
The final rule is listed in the Federal Register. Covered organizations must meet compliance standards by Jan. 18, 2018.
Although much of the language in the final rule will likely keep lawyers busy for years to come, there are some guidelines that are easy to interpret. In general, the rules say that the technology with a display screen shall be speech-output enabled for full and independent use by individuals with vision impairments. Input controls shall be operable by touch and tactilely discernible without activation.
Running the risk
Missing out on revenue from millions of customers with disabilities is just one of the pitfalls of not complying with ADA regulations, or at least making every effort to make sense of the standards.
For violations that occurred after April 28, 2014, the maximum civil penalty for a first violation of ADA regulations is $75,000. For a subsequent violation, the maximum civil penalty is $150,000.
In addition, self-service kiosks are increasingly a target for ADA lawsuits. In March 2017, for example, the American Council of the Blind filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against fast casual restaurant chain Eatsa on behalf of a blind customer. Under Eatsa’s business model, customers order from tablet-based kiosks and pick up their food from a cubicle when it’s ready.
Customer Michael Godino claims he was unable to use a self-order kiosk in an Eatsa to place an order because the kiosks weren’t accessible for blind customers.
“Because the self-service mobile applications, touchscreen tablets, and visually-marked cubbies Eatsa utilizes rely on exclusively visual displays and do not provide any form of audio output or tactile input, Eatsa’s design is entirely inaccessible to blind customers,” according to the lawsuit.
click for full size image
Restaurants aren’t the only businesses open to ADA lawsuits. A proposed class action suit against mall operator Simon Property Group claims a Proactiv skincare products kiosk, located in the Simon-run Miami Mall in Florida, discriminates against blind and visually impaired individuals. The lawsuit argues the Proactiv automated retail kiosk, which uses a touchscreen display, doesn’t offer a way for blind consumers to purchase its products.
“Sighted customers can independently browse, select, and pay for Proactiv brand skincare products at the Miami Mall Proactiv kiosk. However, blind customers are denied the opportunity to participate in this retail service,” the complaint reads. “Moreover, [the defendant] has failed to provide an alternative channel for blind customers to enjoy the retail service provided through the Proactiv kiosk, such as the training of qualified readers to assist visually impaired and blind customers.”
There are about 1,000 Proactiv kiosks in malls in the United States, Canada and Japan.
And just in case a business operator thinks having a staff member on hand to assist disabled customers with using self-service technology, chances are that’s not enough to keep from running afoul of the ADA.
More: consider for wall mount units the ADA requirement for blind & partially sighted to be able to detect protuberances from walls with their canes. Click for full size
“It depends on the application and if the assistant is as available as the kiosk to provide services,” said Adam Aronson, CEO of San Rafael, Calif.-based Lilitab Tablet Kiosks. Lilitab designs, engineers and markets a range of tablet kiosk products. “If the cashier typically has longer lines than the kiosk, that’s not the same service level,” Aronson said.
While lawsuits against kiosk deployers related to ADA compliance are always a concern, other dangers include the negative publicity from being perceived as a business that is insensitive to the needs of disabled customers. Just a few months ago cable news was filled images of U.S. Capital Police forcibly removing disabled demonstrators from a protest over the Senate’s now-defunct health care bill. Nobody wants their business to be featured in similar reporting.
Of course, things are rarely simple when it comes to government regulations and the ADA is no different. Complicating the landscape is HR 620, the “ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017,” currently making its way through Congress. According to the Center for American Progress the bill, sponsored by Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas), would require anyone seeking to file a lawsuit against a business for ADA violations to first provide written notice to that business, outlining the provisions of the law that apply to the violation. Business owners would then have 60 days to acknowledge the violation and another 120 days to at least make “substantial progress” towards rectifying it.
Opponents of the bill claim it would gut enforcement of the ADA by allowing businesses to stall the correction of violation for months or years, while those in favor say it would prevent the “drive-by lawsuits” that end up forcing business owners to pay settlements to lawyers who make a career out of filing ADA suits. The ADA bars the awarding of monetary damages in successful lawsuits, but does allow the awarding of “a reasonable attorney’s fee.”
Meeting the challenge
In an effort to sort through the confusion over ADA guidelines, kiosk deployers are taking their own steps to accommodate disabled users.
The easiest steps to take are those that offer access to individuals in wheelchairs or who are otherwise vertically challenged. That includes offering at least one kiosk with an adjustable height or a lower point of access.
VFO project by KioWare and URway. Click for full story.
“Swiveling mounts or adjustable height mounts may assist in accessibility – but they don’t solve the problem just by being available,” said Laura Miller, director of marketing with York, Pa.-based KioWare Kiosk Software.
“The physical placement of the kiosk is just as important as the presence of accessibility features and testing is needed even with the purchase of an accessible kiosk,” she said. “If the path to the kiosk is too narrow to approach head on, for instance, it becomes moot that the kiosk itself is accessible because getting to the kiosk is too challenging or the space too constricted. Vertical and horizontal reach must be considered.”
Ticketing unit for Universal with ADA. Photo courtesy Olea Kiosks. Click for full size.
As mentioned earlier, though, making the kiosk available to those in a wheelchair isn’t enough.
“No longer can you get away with a kiosk just being ‘reachable’,” said Frank Olea, CEO of Cerritos, Calif.-based Olea Kiosks. “Most companies will say their product is ADA compliant, but they fail to mention they’ve only covered a very small spectrum of individuals with disabilities. Sure, someone in a wheelchair can reach the screen, but serving people with disabilities goes far beyond that.”
As demonstrated by the Eatsa scenario, one of the biggest challenges in deploying interactive self-service technology is accommodating visually impaired users. A touchscreen relies heavily on users being able to see the screen, so deployers need to find ways to communicate that information in other ways.
“Without access to speech feedback for on screen contents and a method for determining what item the user is activating, a person who is blind or visually impaired cannot effectively make use of a touchscreen or tablet based kiosk,” said staff at the American Foundation for the Blind.
“For those with low vision, small or ornate fonts are difficult, if not impossible, to read,” AFB officials said. “Low contrast between the foreground and background can also make on-screen and print-labeled items difficult to read.”
In addition, glare on the screen and on any print-labeled areas of the machine can cause readability barriers for people with low vision, the AFB said.
“What I advise people to do is to recreate a version of the kiosk software that can be used by people with visual problems,” said Mike James, CEO of Washington D.C.-based Kiosk Group Inc.
“Information can be presented in large text and contrasting colors for people who are marginally blind, and to have a system for audio feedback for those who are completely blind,” James said. Those prompts can be used in conjunction with Braille keyboards to assist with navigation.
Storm Nav-Pad. Click for full size image
Accommodating users with hand mobility issues is a concern as well. An ‘Automated Passport Solution’ Olea built for deployment in the Dallas Fort Worth Airport incorporates the Nav-Pad, a keypad designed by London-based Storm Interface that provides accessibility to a kiosk’s functions for those with physical or sensory impairments. The APS kiosk shortens the clearance process for international travelers by collecting biographical and passport information from passengers before they are seen by a customs officer.
Audio navigation device. Click for full size. Courtesy Storm Interface
The Nav-Pad, developed in partnership with the Trace Research & Development Center, was originally designed for use in military and industrial applications where the user might be wearing heavy gloves. One of the pioneers in the space, Storm Interface also offers the Audio-Nav Keypad, an assistive USB device offering menu navigation by means of audio direction.
The work continues
As ADA compliance becomes a bigger and bigger issue for hardware manufacturers, software developers and kiosk deployers, a variety of industry groups are working to develop solutions that can meet the needs of disabled users.
The Kiosk Industry Association, for example, has formed an ADA working group and committee expressly for ADA to try and standardize guidelines for the industry. A big initiative for the association is meeting with the US Access Board directly to help communicate industry information and context to the standards body directly.
Other organizations with ADA initiatives include the Electronic Transactions Association, which has also formed a working group. The ETA represents more than 500 companies worldwide involved in electronic transaction processing products and services, working to influence, monitor and shape the payments industry by providing leadership through education, advocacy and the exchange of information.
“The purpose of the group is to promote compliance and the development and deployment of products and services to help ensure access to the payment system,” said Meghan Cieslak, ETA’s director of communications. “The group is comprised of industry experts, start-ups, as well as ISOs and VARs – all focused on helping disabled Americans access the payment system.”
The Kiosk Industry Association is consulting with the ETA on access initiatives and has also enlisted the assistance of the ATM Industry Association which already has a formal ADA document via EFTA for their members.
It’s also critical for deployers to think about accessibility from the very beginning of a kiosk project. A paper co-authored by Peter Jarvis and Nicky Shaw, both from Storm Interface, along with Robin Spinks from the U.K.’s Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) included the following recommendations:
“Accessibility is most effectively achieved when adopted as a primary system specification,” the group wrote.
“It is most successfully implemented if considered during the concept design process,” they wrote. “Accessibility should be a primary objective during the origination of hardware solutions, application software and content to be delivered.”
In addition, consideration should also be given to the environment in which the system will be installed, they wrote, and that terminals located in public or unsupervised environments will need to survive regular cleaning and sanitization procedures using sprayed liquid disinfectants and other cleaning agents.
Along with providing hardware designed for accessibility, the application or website on the kiosk must be built with more than a cursory nod toward compliance in order to have these other components “work” in a successful and accessible deployment. The kiosk system software can utilize accessibility features and the hardware can provide sound, include keyboards and be height adjustable, but if the application isn’t built with accessibility in mind, or modified to make sure accessibility features are fully integrated, usability and accessibility will suffer for it.
These concerns, and others, are driving the various partnerships on ADA issues.
“It was pretty much a no-brainer for us to go ahead and work together on standardizing,” Keefner said.
“I’ve been really passionate about it and I’ve talked to kiosk manufacturers about binding together to create standards on kiosk design so people who walk up to a kiosk know where to find the audio jack, know where to find the braille keyboard or whatever,” said Kiosk Group’s Mike James. “Those features could be the same for every project.”
Unfortunately, despite the additional clarification on access rules it’s likely that in the short term it’s likely that many compliance issues are likely to be hashed out in court.
“It seems that there are a few people out there who have made it their job to litigate any non-ADA-compliant situations that arise,” Miller said. “This is not exclusive to kiosks, but they have not been completely spared, and while it seems relatively obscure at this point, those individuals looking for violations will likely eventually hit on the existence of kiosks as fodder for their litigious pursuits.”
I wanted to congratulate you both on an excellent and informative article. Thank you for helping to bring the importance of ADA and ACAA mandates to the attention of the Kiosk Industry and to those agencies deploying and operating ICT in public environments. Thanks also for recognizing Storm Interface in the text of the article and for including some of those images showing deployed installations. We are constantly working to improve and add to the range of accessibility and assistive technology products available to kiosk designers. There are some exciting new developments in process which will help to deliver the “multi-modal” methods of system interface that are widely predicted to be the next big step in system accessibility. The priority will be to ensure our partners in the kiosk industry are kept aware of and fully supported in the deployment of Assistive Technology Products (ATP).
Hopefully your article will receive the recognition it deserves and I will have an opportunity to work with you both to maintain awareness of accessibility issues within the kiosk industry.
Background information on Gaming Labs certification for gaming regulations.
GLI’s business is to test, review and report on gaming devices and systems against the standards established by relevant gaming jurisdictions worldwide. Each jurisdiction has the authority to set their own standards; however, many use our standards as a starting point in developing their regulations.
In other words, GLI has established the base standards for gaming devices and systems around the world. We are the experts in the industry. *Non-English versions of the most current versions of any/all recently-updated standards will be posted to this website as soon as practical.
Gaming Standards Including Kiosks and Betting Kiosks or Wagering Systems
Until May 2018, a federal law known as the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) limits most legal sports betting to Nevada and three other states. That (PASPA) was overturned by the Supreme Court in favor of New Jersey, allowing state-sponsored betting.
What to Expect in a World Where States Can Legalize Sports Betting
Anticipating PASPA’s repeal, a handful of states have started the process by passing enabling legislation. Pennsylvania is one notable example. These changes to the law are paving the way for states to start offering legal sports betting in the next couple years.
What can we expect the future of sports betting to look like? According to a May 2017 Oxford Economics report, legalized sports betting is projected to generate $8.4 billion in new tax revenues, create more than 200,000 new jobs and add over $22 billion to the nation’s GDP. With a budding new industry on the horizon, businesses are working tirelessly to capitalize on the new opportunities being presented in the world of sports gambling.
Casinos will need to be well-prepared for the influx of new customers that will be flocking to their venues in hopes of placing their first legal sports bet. As a result, many casinos are finding that sports betting kiosks provide the needed automated self-service solution to handle a higher volume of sports wagers without requiring the need for additional customer service staff.
The Impact of Sports Betting Kiosks
With such anticipated economic growth in the gambling industry, casinos will need to do their best to streamline their betting services. Sports betting kiosks will be a key factor in perfecting this process as they will improve the customer experience and will increase betting revenues for operators.
Wagering kiosks will improve the customer experience by cutting down wait time. Customers will not be waiting in line to place a bet. With multiple betting kiosks available, customers will be able to place a wager whenever they please. In turn, this will also increase revenue with more total bets placed.
Pennsylvania sports betting started late in the game considering it had a law on the books in 2017, only launching in November. The Keystone State changed its law to allow legal sports betting anywhere within the state.
Legal sports betting in Nevada did not change after the Supreme Court decision. Many Nevada casinos feature online and mobile sports betting platforms allowing you to wager anywhere in the state.
Geolocation technology on your device will ensure that you are located in Nevada before allowing you to bet. Bettors also must first establish an account in-person at a physical casino location before betting online. This includes verification of identification and a minimum cash deposit of between $50-$100 to fund the account.
West Virginia sports betting sites
West Virginia opened its sports betting operation in September. Only two public sportsbooks opened in 2018, and another started up at The Greenbrier, a private resort. West Virginia sports betting added the ability to bet via mobile in December 2018.
Rhode Island’s sports betting operation runs through the state lottery in partnership with William Hill, so the well-known bookmaker will provide the state’s app technology.
Mississippi sports betting sites
Sort of. Mississippi sports betting must be done within a land-based or water-based casino. However, state regulations allow for mobile wagering while on casino property, though only one tribal casino has launched it.
Benefits of Betting Kiosks
Line queue management for burst cycles
Increased betting revenues for operators
Higher wagering levels
Operators optimize their labor costs
Accept cash, winning tickets, and vouchers
Provide ADA accessible betting options for customers
Background – Fixed odds betting terminal
A fixed odds betting terminal (FOBT) is a type of electronic slot machine normally found in betting shops in the United Kingdom. The terminals allow players to bet on the outcome of various games and events which have fixed odds, with the theoretical percentage return to player (RTP) being displayed on the machine by law. Typically slot machine FOBTs have an RTP of 90% to 94% depending on the chosen stake, and standard roulette FOBTs have a long-term average RTP of 97%. Fixed odds betting terminals were introduced to UK shops in 2001.
The most commonly played game is roulette. The minimum amount wagered per spin is £1. The maximum bet cannot exceed a payout of £500 (i.e. putting £14.00 on a single number on roulette). The largest single payout cannot exceed £500. Token coins can be of value as low as five pence in some UK licensed betting offices (LBOs). Other games include bingo, simulated horseracing and greyhound racing, and a range of slot machine games.
Like all casino games, the ‘house’ (i.e. the betting shop) has a built-in advantage, with current margins on roulette games being between 2.7% and 5%.
Smart City RFPs and Digital Signage RFPs go hand-in-hand and lots of cities are looking at new infrastructure. We track those. These days that means smart transit, smart transportation, smart lighting, automation, EV vehicles, Self-Driving. It’s a big basket for sure. Part of IoT trends in self-service.
Department of Veteran Affairs –Seeking interactive exam room touchscreen monitors that offers education to Veterans by any healthcare provider through multimedia functions within the interactive touchscreen.
Congress digital signage RFP
Jacksonvile digital signage
Georgia digital signage
City of Dallas Purchase of Media Players for Digital Signage
11/14/2019 — The city of Las Vegas Mobility Master Plan proposes to purchase 3 new electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and deploy a pilot first phase of demonstration projects throughout the city’s Downtown / Innovation District, including AV/CV/EV testing, electric vehicle charging, smart wayfinding, and other infrastructure supportive of autonomous, connected, and electric vehicles. Estimated Completion Date: 06/30/2020
11/4/2019 – Baltimore IKE Smart City Kiosk. A new Interactive Kiosk Experience (IKE) by IKE Smart City was installed this week.
WMATA News — DC transit agency issues RFPs for digital communication upgrades [not verified yet 9/18]
List of budgeted projects
Smart Cities NORTH CAROLINA
Smart Cities OHIO
IT – Smart City Project COLORADO
Smart Cities Initiative OHIO
Smart City Transportation Projects CALIFORNIA
IT – Smart City Project COLORADO
Smart City Initiatives Plan FLORIDA
IT – Smart City Project COLORADO
Video-sensor Smart City Project SOUTH CAROLINA
Video-sensor Smart City Project SOUTH CAROLINA
Smart Cities Initiative – Transportation System Improvements VIRGINIA
Smart Cities Initiative – Transportation System Improvements VIRGINIA
Community Network Connectivity WASHINGTON
Expanded Community Connectivity WASHINGTON
Expanded Community Connectivity WASHINGTON
Community Network Connectivity WASHINGTON
Connected Vehicles Systems OHIO
Central Transit Signal Priority and Emergency Vehicle Preemption (Federal) VIRGINIA
ITS Master Plan Implementation Program WASHINGTON
Intelligent Transportation Systems VIRGINIA
Kansas City Comprehensive Smart City Partnership with Kansas City, Missouri. The City seeks to partner with a firm to provide a fully integrated suite of sensors, networks, and data and analytics platforms that will result in the City becoming the first true Smart City in the world. Due Date: Extended to August 7, 2pm.
Oct 15 — Link — IoT and Smart Agriculture Are Building Our Future Cities Today
The 9.6 billion people expected to live on the planet by 2050, and with 70 percent of them in urban areas, IoT is pushing smart agriculture in smart cities.
4/9/18 — announced last week the city’s plans for LinkNWK, a communications network of sidewalk kiosks that will provide residents and visitors of Newark with free gigabit Wi-Fi, mobile device charging, free phone calls to anywhere in the U.S., access to municipal services, maps and directions, and real-time local information on city streets. There will be no cost to taxpayers or users as it is supported through advertising on the Link kiosk displays.
City council is mulling a resolution that will allow New York City-based Smart City Media LLC. to install about 25 digital kiosks to provide information to residents and tourists. These kiosks – called CityPosts — will stand about 8-feet tall and have 55-inch screens on both sides, chief marketing officer Mike Mainthow said in a phone interview today.
The company is now building “smart city” infrastructure near Denver, Colorado, with the goal of turning the area into a “smart city” by 2026. The initiative is part of a larger Panasonic program Panasonic called CityNow. Although the definition of a “smart city” varies depending on who you ask, the term typically describes a metro area that prioritizes the use of technology in its infrastructure.
Part of the smart cities movement includes managing how people travel and use the transportation network, as well as how cities collect data from vehicles and group travel patterns for better land use and transportation policy decision making.
Jun 19, 2017 – When envisioning all the possibilities of smart cities, it’s also important to consider the difficulties that could arise in creating them.
Variations on Smart City Project Example
Here is one for public safety circa March 2018 in California.
The City of xxxxxxxxxx (“City”) seeks to partner with
technology providers who are working to improve and
enhance the urban environment through the use of smart city technology. For this Request for Proposals (“RFP”), the City seeks up to four Firms/Teams that can implement and demonstrate how camera, video, motion, and other sensor technology can be an effective tool in addressing public safety. Working in collaboration with the City and the xxxxxx County Sheriff’s Department, these Firms/Teams will demonstrate solutions that can enhance public safety in the City. This pilot project will allow the City and the SD to assess the utility, data management needs, cost effectiveness, and overall success of a smart city public safety program that could be scaled citywide in designated areas of the City. The size and density of the City, along with its large visitor population (especially during special events) provides a great environment for the testing and implementation of cutting-edge public safety technology. Up to four Firms/Teams will be selected.
The selected Firms/Teams will design and implement a
demonstration project for deployment over nine months. At least one location in the City will be assigned to each Firm/Team for implementation. The selected Firms/Teams will be provided a $10,000 stipend, distributed at determined milestones during the nine month duration of the pilot program. Selected Firms/Teams shall be required to comply with the City’s Privacy Guidelines. In addition to public safety applications, the City encourages camera and
sensor applications that can provide insights about how people interact in the City. For example, innovative companies are using cameras and sensors to measure volume and direction of pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicle trac. Such programs can inform city planning and other municipal operations as collected data can be used to increase pedestrian and vehicle safety or increase economic activity. In addition, the City welcomes technologies that
protect privacy, such as use of anonymized data and real-time image scrambling.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic began dominating headlines earlier this year, retailers and brands have been forced to demonstrate agility when meeting new customer expectations. More than ever, the transformed consumer now counts on operational supply chains, accessibility, and arguably most important, enhanced safety standards.
While retail stores strategize short-term goals to meet health regulations, maintain stocked shelves, and keep doors open, many are also considering the impact a changed customer mindset will have on today’s brick-and-mortar shopping.
As is often the case, a solution lies with technology. While more shoppers return to stores, retail self-service kiosks offer the safe contactless experience and endless aisle options they now seek.
The Retail Elephant in the Room
Before we dive into how self-service kiosks can assist retail, though, it’s important to address the more pressing concern about the industry first. Can it bounce back?
There’s no shortage of literature on which retailers will withstand the economic downturn and which will regrettably succumb. However, a consistent theme throughout much of the discussion is that the pandemic hit the gas pedal for most. If a store or brand was already slow to adopt a multichannel approach, the last few months only magnified the issues. But if a big-name retailer had been in the midst of strategizing their customer experience plans with processes like Buy Online, Pickup In-Store (BOPIS) amongst others, they learned the importance of rolling them out quickly and staying nimble.
Fortunately, recent consumer research has some promising predictions for retail as a whole.
67 percent of global consumers say they’ve already returned to non-essential retail stores
80 percent feel reassured by safety measures retailers have put into place
More than half surveyed expected their shopping habits to return to normal by next summer
The stores that make it through this rough period will be the ones that come out better positioned to address the needs of our omnichannel world while still fulfilling the desire for brick-and-mortar experiences. And along the way, self-service technology will be an integral strategy to help retailers offer both.
Interactive Kiosks Promote Customer and Employee Safety
According to Incisiv’s 2020 Shopper Study “The New Store Shopper in High-Touch Retail,” 96 percent of shoppers interviewed this summer say they are very unlikely to seek in-store conversations with store associates over the next 6 months.
January Update – Kiosk IndustryBig News – January is the last month for charter membership and charter sponsors. Charter means your company is fixed in the site index as the navigation. Go to the home page and hover your mouse on the About section and see the Charter flyouts. It is $299 till the end of January. I decided to include January since I will be at NRF. Here is link and we take CC or Paypal (and you don’t have to insert your EMV card holding it oddly in your hand 🙂
Recommended: I wrote up a NRF Preview which lists companies and booths. I’ll be there with Michael Tulloch of CTS and we’re going to talk to a lot of people (plus maybe the usual steak dinner). If you want to say hello send me an email ([email protected]).
Also a write up after some interviews about HealthSpot and why it seemingly has crashed and burned after such a meteoric rise. Same week Higi gets $40M. Go figure. I really liked the blog entry by Frost & Sullivan. They did a nice job.
Here’s the other news from Kiosk Industry… Editor Picks
Version 3.6 of KioWare for Android (Lite, Basic, & Full) now supports Android Marshmallow (6.0). Users running Android 6.0 can now use KioWare to safely secure their tablets or phones to approved websites or applications.
KioWare Basic for Android and KioWare Full for Android (Version 3.6) also include support for EMV certification via Credit Call’s mPOS CardEaseMobile framework which works on Android 5.0 and newer. With support for this framework, EMV certified transactions and refunds can be run on a tablet using compatible devices. For a full device list,visit our website.
KioWare Lite, Basic, & Full for Android also now support native PDF files, allowing PDF viewing. Version 3.6 of KioWare for Android also offers a user agent feature, appending custom text to the browser user agent. This feature allows the web server to detect that a kiosk is requesting the webpage and enables users to set the kiosk display to be different from basic web browsing content. This feature can also be used for analytics and reporting.
Users of KioWare for Android should update their version of KioWare to version 3.6, particularly if it will be securing a device running Android 6.0 or later. Current support is required in order to update.
For a full description of new features for the entire KioWare for Android product line, visit our site.
KioWare has released a new version of their KioWare Server & KioCloud kiosk management product solutions.
Click to see full image
All KioWare products can be used to secure mobile devices such as tablets, desktops, and smartphones running Android or Windows Operating Systems. KioWare kiosk software products lock down your device into kiosk mode, which secures the overall operating system, home screen and usage of applications. KioWare Kiosk Management tools are used to manage your kiosks, providing usage statistics, content management, and heartbeat monitoring. Additionally, KioCloud also works with iOS via Kiosk Pro’s iOS lockdown solution.
Version 4.9.0 of KioWare Server & KioCloud offers an enhanced user interface and a new layout for managing kiosk options and features. KioWare Server is a self-hosted solution available via perpetual license and KioCloud provides users with a cloud-based subscription option for KioWare hosted kiosk management.
Current support is required in order to update KioWare Server.
View a full version history of the KioWare kiosk management product. Learn more about KioWare kiosk management.
KioWare Server is available as a 30 day free trial. Existing clients with current support have the ability to upgrade. Those interested in trying KioCloud, the KioWare hosted kiosk management option, can request a free KioCloud demo.
If you are still in the early stages of converting your hardware and systems to an EMV compliant solution, you will want to consider the following shortcuts and hints to a painless EMV solution.
For those that have relatively new hardware. . . Find out if your existing hardware will be updated or supplemented to provide chip reading capabilities. Depending on the age of your hardware, you may find that vendors are offering updates to allow your device to read “chip” technology. If your hardware vendor will not be providing hardware updates, you will need to select a hardware option that is chip ready. Chip ready hardware can be purchased via companies like UCP (Unattended Card Payments).
Use your existing application or website. While you may find that this is an opportune time for an update, you may find time savings by using your existing application with a few modifications to hardware and payment processing. There is no need to reinvent something that works effectively and is not in need of an update. There are simple hardware and software solutions that do not require a complete system redesign.
Upgrade your hardware (if necessary) & use pre-configured payment communication options. Certainly, your hardware needs to not only be chip ready, but it must also accommodate secure data transfer via software and payment gateway. By selecting hardware and software that can become compliant with the flip of the proverbial switch, you can upgrade your system without the need to make complex changes later, to finalize the update. It may be a challenge to identify companies that are prepared to go live with EMV via the flip of the proverbial switch. Finding those that are already integrated can be an enormous time saving from implementation to certification. Payment gateway Credit Call offers ChipDNA, which allows hardware to communicate financial information to Credit Call via KioWare kiosk software using the ChipDNA API. KioWare’s configuration (available in Version 7.3.0 and higher) offers a simple drop down with no programming required.
Take advantage of EMV pre-certified solutions. EMV compliance is not just the act of making a system secure, but also obtaining the official certification that verifies that your system is secure. the entire system Credit Call ChipDNA/KioWare system is EMV certified without requiring the paperwork and processing time that other solutions may require.
Other systems may also come with EMV pre-certification. Additional information can be found here:
Worldwide Kiosk software Market 2017 presents a widespread and fundamental study of Kiosk software industry along with the analysis of subjective aspects which will provide key business insights to the readers. Global Kiosk software Market 2017 research report offers the analytical view of the industry by studying different factors like Kiosk software market growth, consumption …
Version 8.12 of KioWare for Windows (Lite, Basic, & Full with Server) has added new toolbar controls, support for time-limited sessions, Hot Virtual Keyboard support, and support for Chromium 62. KioWare Basic for Windows has added a support for Puloon Bill Dispensers, Custom KPM printers, an Elatec proximity reader, and more. KioWare Full has added support to send device serial numbers to KioWare Server/KioCloud.
Some particularly relevant new features (in addition to the supported devices):
Ability to limit session time/set max session times.
Toolbar buttons added for session time limits, date, time, connection types.
Support for Hot Virtual Keyboards
Chromium 62 support
KioWare has a large list of other new features and you can view them all (plus all of the new devices) in the version history. KioWare has upgraded to the latest version of Chip DNA as well, so support for all of the supported Chip DNA devices are also included in the new version if used with Chip DNA and supported processors (for EMV compliance).
KioWare kiosk software products lock down your device into kiosk mode, which secures the overall operating system, home screen, and usage of applications.
Version 3.14 of KioWare for Android (Lite, Basic, & Full with Kiosk Management) has added customized exit patterns, WI-FI Management options, favicon customization options, new guided setup functionality, screen magnification, and more. Version 7.6.0 of KioWare Classic for Windows (Basic & Full) includes updates for ScanShell driver’s license scanner, and the ChipDNA EMV Compliance solution.
KioWare Classic for Windows New Features
ScanShell driver’s license scanning updated to the latest version. (Basic/Full)
ChipDNA updated to 2.01 for new EMV compliant hardware & processor integrations. (Basic/Full)
Custom intervals can now be scheduled on secondary monitors, allowing for custom timing on a per-page basis. (Basic/Full)
Stop Video Capturing Manually (on demand). (Basic/Full)
KioWare has been providing OS, desktop, and browser lockdown security for the kiosk and self-service industry since 2003.
KioWare kiosk software secures your application or website on Windows or Android devices, restricting user access to approved behaviors and protecting user and network data. KioWare is fully customizable and offers solutions ranging from browser lockdown to full server-based kiosk management. From simple out of the box configurations to more complex integrations, KioWare is trusted by developers, IT professionals, marketers, Fortune 100 corporations, and small business owners. The KioWare team is based in York, Pennsylvania, USA with an office located in Reading, UK. Choose the best KioWare product for your self-service project and download a fully functioning free trial at KioWare.com.
KioWare has a new release of KioWare for Android (version 3.15). Also they have also released a new KioCall Android App (available in the Google Play Store) for use on Android phones and tablets – it allows for sending and receiving calls to/from kiosks or other devices running KioCall.
Version 3.15 of KioWare for Android (Lite, Basic, & Full with Kiosk Management) has added a number of new features and UI improvements including password protection options for the configuration tool, an updated Android SDK (Version 26), ability to add superuser permissions when provisioning, and more. Using the KioCall Video Conferencing app (from KioWare), KioWare for Android can now accept incoming calls while in Attract mode. A new battery management tool is also available (for use with the ArmorActive Optica Pro LED™.)
Additionally, the KioCall videoconferencing app, previously available only for use on Windows devices, is now available as an Android app for use on Android phones and tablets.
Version 8.14 of KioWare for Windows is now available with a brand new Guided Setup allowing customers to quickly and easily set up KioWare for Windows to display interactive and non-interactive digital signage, videos, and KioCall video conferencing. With this new Guided Setup, KioWare can be configured to secure a Windows device into a kiosk with only a few clicks. New supported devices have also been added.
June 5, 2018 York, PA – Analytical Design Solutions Inc. (ADSI) has released a new version of KioWare for Windows kiosk software with an all new Guided Setup wizard to help first time users configure KioWare for Windows.
KioWare kiosk software products lock down your device into kiosk mode, which secures the overall operating system, home screen, and usage of applications.
In addition to the new Guided Setup tool, version 8.14 of KioWare for Windows (Lite, Basic, & Full with Kiosk Management) has added support for Chrome 65. KioWare Basic & KioWare Full for Windows now support devices such as the Stimare printer (supporting printing to RFID bracelets), Star printers, Telequip (coin dispensers), Epson receipt printers, and support for ccTalk for bill/coin acceptors. View all supported devices here.
The new Guided Setup provides users with the option to easily configure KioWare for Windows to show interactive content (browser-based), non-interactive digital signage, and as a video conferencing kiosk using the KioCall Videoconferencing app. Additional settings can also be configured by answering questions and progressing through the Guided Setup. As always, users can opt to exit the Guided Setup and configure KioWare directly through the configuration tool at any time.
Support must be current to upgrade to the latest version.
Additional features are also included in this release. View a full description of features added to this and other versions of the KioWare product line.
New android kiosk software release available for KioWare for Android (version 3.17). Highlights are SIP support for VoIP calling, new attract screen transition options, Magtek device support (available in Basic and Full), and more.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW to KioWare for Android
Version 3.17 of KioWare® for Android is now available. KioWare for Android now adds SIP Voice over IP capabilities for supported tablets. Also added: new hardware keyboard filtering, a built-in application drawer, updated attract looper settings, and more. KioWare Basic for Android & KioWare Full for Android now have MagTek magnetic card reader support. Additional features also now available.
September 2017, York, PA – Analytical Design Solutions Inc. (ADSI) has released a new version of KioWare for Android kiosk software supporting SIP VoIP and Magtek magnetic card readers.
KioWare kiosk software products lock down your device into kiosk mode, turning your tablet into a secure kiosk or purposed device for self-service, digital signage, or mobile device management deployments.
SIP Voice over IP
Version 3.17 of Kioware Lite for Android now includes capabilities for SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) Voice over IP (VoIP) on supported devices. A SIP connection allows for making or receiving phone calls over the Internet. In addition to phone calling, KioWare for Android also supports KioCall Video
Conferencing for video conferencing calls.
Magtek Magnetic Card Reader
KioWare Basic for Android and KioWare Full for Android now support MagTek magnetic card readers including the eDynamo and tDynamo for non-credit card magstripe deployments.
Additional New Features and Improvements
Built in applications drawer
The built-in applications drawer can be used instead of the default home screen to allow kiosk users to access applications easily.
Attract looper settings
New attract looper settings have been added to control the transition animation to allow for more options in going from slide to slide. Settings can also change the attract looper folder location.
Results dialog added when provisioning
A results dialog has been added to show when provisioning for informed provisioning monitoring
Various bug fixes and application improvements.
View all updates to KioWare for Android version 3.17 here.
Licensing KioWare for Android
A license is needed for each deployed kiosk running KioWare for Android. Quantity pricing is available. Annual support and maintenance is recommended, and current support is required in order to upgrade. View a full description of features for this and other versions of the KioWare product line.
KioWare has been providing OS, desktop, and browser lockdown security for the kiosk and self-service industry since 2003 and Android software since 2012.
KioWare kiosk software secures your application or website on Windows or Android devices, restricting user access to approved behaviors and protecting user and network data. KioWare is fully customizable and offers solutions ranging from browser lockdown to full server-based kiosk management. From simple out of the box configurations to more complex integrations, KioWare is trusted by developers, IT professionals, marketers, Fortune 100 corporations, and small business owners. The KioWare team is based in York, Pennsylvania, with an office located in Reading, UK. Choose the best KioWare product for your self-service project and download a fully functioning free trial at KioWare.com.
ORK, Pa., Jan. 8, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Analytical Design Solutions Inc. (ADSI) has released a new product to secure the Chrome™Operating System. KioWare for Chrome OS™ is a kiosk application used with Chrome OS Kiosk Mode to secure the Chrome Operating System and activate additional interactive kiosk features.
Users with the Chrome operating system activate “Chrome Kiosk Mode” on their device. They then add the KioWare for Chrome OS kiosk application to provide additional features and security not available using Chrome OS kiosk mode alone. Learn more about setting up a Chrome OS device with KioWare for Chrome OS.
KioWare Lite for Chrome OS includes features such as:
Popup window control
Domain/Page list blocking
User session management
File download blocking
Clear private browser data
Custom toolbar skins
… and more.
KioWare kiosk software products lock down a device into a secure interactive kiosk, turning a tablet into a kiosk or purposed device for self-service, digital signage, or mobile device management deployments. Now available for Windows®, Android™, & Chrome operating systems. KioWare for Chrome OS is not to be confused with the KioWare for Windows application, which secures the Windows operating system and uses a Chromium-based browser.
KioWare for Chrome OS
KioWare for Chrome OS is available in a free fully functioning demo. Download, configure, and test, then license by purchasing an annual subscription. One license is needed for each deployed kiosk running KioWare for Chrome OS. Volume discounts are available.
KioWare has been providing OS, desktop, and browser lockdown security for the kiosk and self-service industry since 2003 and Android software since 2012.
KioWare kiosk software secures an application or website on Windows or Android devices, restricting user access to approved behaviors and protecting the user and network data. KioWare is fully customizable and offers solutions ranging from browser lockdown to full server-based kiosk management. From simple out of the box configurations to more complex integrations, KioWare is trusted by developers, IT professionals, marketers, Fortune 100 corporations, and small business owners. The KioWare team is based in York, Pennsylvania, with an office located in Reading, UK. Choose the best KioWare product for any self-service project and download a fully functioning free trial at KioWare.com.
KioWare OS is a marriage of kiosk system software and Android single board computer (SBC) hardware where KioWare is tightly integrated into the firmware of the SBC device.
KioWare OS locks the device so that only KioWare is running. If the kiosk requires other applications to be running, then KioWare can be configured to load those applications much like plugins. KioWare is completely in control of the SBC device.
Enjoy all the great features of KioWare on an Android SBC including remote monitoring, management and automatic updating of KioWare OS via OTA technology.
Why KioWare OS is a Better Kiosk OS Solution
KioWare OS is much less expensive than Windows solution and is compact, providing custom kiosk flexibility. Tablets are not a viable custom kiosk solution because
they are typically very expensive
the lack of physical I/O
lack of screen flexibility
not designed for 24/7
Typically loaded with bloatware.
An SBC solution like KioWare OS eliminates all of these issues.
The reality is Android is mostly limited to informational kiosks using a Samsung tablet or all-in-one kiosks such as ELO. As we know, the fundamental difference between Android and Windows is Android being open-source means that every manufacturer has developed its own low-level system APIs that kiosk system software requires.
Samsung with their Knox interface is the best, but they only sell tablets. So, they are primarily limited to information kiosks as tablets have limited I/O. In addition, they are less than ideal because you are limited to screen size, any component failure means an entire tablet replacement, generally, a consumer-grade device and not happy running 24×7, installed bloatware, etc.
New options at the kernel level for Android are coming. The Tinker Board has plenty of I/O including GPIO and a modified kernel makes programming I/O easy. Modified kernels can also support the Wattbox IP power conditioner for kiosks needing that functionality. And there is finally a decent unattended EMV Android solution using the GoChip. The Tinker Board is a tiny PCB, so lots of flexibility for custom kiosk design. And it is inexpensive compared to a Windows box. There is now a lot of flexibility for an Android kiosk.
The New Tinker Hardware
Like the Raspberry Pi 3, the Tinker Board is basically an entire PC — motherboard, CPU, GPU, system memory and more — all in one package. Based around a Rockchip RK3388 SoC quad-core 1.8GHz ARM Cortex-A17 CPU, Asus is claiming the board will have twice the performance of the Pi 3, which is now nearly a year old.
Other specs include:
2GB dual-channel LPDDR3 memory
Gigabit LAN and Bluetooth 4.0 + EDR connectivity
802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi
Four USB 2.0 ports
40-pin internal header with 28 GPIO pins
Contact points for PWM and S/PDIF signals
3.5mm audio jack connection
CSI port for camera connection
DSI port supporting HD resolution
HDMI 2.0 port with 4K-resolution support
MicroSD port supporting UHS-I card speed
Supports Debian OS with Kodi
5V/2A Micro-USB power supply (not included)
Craig is the senior staff writer for Kiosk Industry Group Association. He has 25 years of experience in the industry.
YORK, PENNSYLVANIA — A new version update of KioWare for Windows has been released. Version 8.24 for Windows is now available with many improvements that work toward the company’s goal of constantly improving user experience.
KioTouch™ is a touchless interface solution for self-service kiosks and is now integrated into KioWare for Windows. KioTouch™ allows end-users to interact with the kiosk through their mobile device and does not require they touch the surface of the kiosk at all. Click here to learn more about KioTouch™.
Implement FreedomPay EMV
KioWare, once again, expanded its EMV toolbelt by adding support for another EMV chip processor.
More Options for Error Handling Page
KioWare now has more options for error handling including displaying the error page, an option to do nothing, displaying an error page if there is no content, and displaying a simple message if necessary.
Add Option to Disable VK Click Sound
The virtual keyboard within KioWare now has the option to enable and disable the “click” sound that plays when interacting with it.
Add PDF Support to Attract Looper
KioWare has added the ability for network administrators to add PDF files to their attract screen loopers making the software more file-diverse.
Update to Latest Agora SDK
KioCall now supports the SDK – Agora version 3.0 release.
Update to Chrome 81/CEF 4044
KioWare has been updated to be compatible with the recent Chrome 81 release.
Analytical Design Solutions, Inc. dba KioWare has been in business since 1991 providing IT consulting to businesses of all sizes, is located in York, Pennsylvania, and is a worldwide market leader in self-service kiosk and purposed device markets. KioWare is kiosk system software that kiosk applications are built on and is used in over 13,000 projects in over 120 countries with project deployments that range from a handful to many thousands of kiosks.
In 2019 a study showed just how unsanitary quick-service restaurant kiosks are and how kiosks can put customers at risk for picking up a range of harmful bacteria. Shortly after this study was released the development team at KioWare began designing KioTouch, a touchless kiosk interface. Using KioTouch, the user of a kiosk would scan a QR code generated on the attract screen and then be empowered to use their mobile device as a trackpad-style mouse to interact with the kiosk’s program.
Moving out of development and into the release phase, KioWare was focused primarily on the features that made KioTouch unique as it related to the safety aspect of a touchless interface. However, we left the door open for this touchless tool to evolve and grow beyond its purpose as a more sanitary interface with shared devices and self-service kiosks. After a handful of demonstrations with prospective clients, we received feedback that allowed us to reframe just what KioTouch is and what it is capable of in real-world application.
For instance, because users scan a QR code to interface with the kiosk through a mobile device, they do not need to be directly in front of the kiosk. This means a company could implement a display that faces out of the building that customers could use even when the business is closed. This is beneficial on many levels because not only does it give customers access to some of the same information and services that they would have if the business was open, but it also alleviates congestion and overcrowding within the facility while it is operational. This is crucial in a society dealing with a pandemic-like COVID-19 and keeping people as socially distanced as possible.
That is just one alternate use though.
Suppose a business has digital displays, but they are static and unable to be used without adding hardware such as a mouse and/or keyboard or replacing the existing display with a touchscreen display. KioTouch requires no hardware retrofits of any kind. This means that taking a static display and installing KioTouch would effectively give it the same functionality as an interactive touchscreen display, without the physical interface. The benefits stack as not only is KioTouch more sanitary than using a touchscreen interface, but also it has the potential to save a company thousands of dollars in hardware costs related to replacing static displays with interactive touchscreen displays. KioTouch helps in lessening the spread of bacteria as well as helping to keep costs down while adding a new layer of convenience.
Here is a second alternate use for KioTouch.
Businesses that require staff working with customers on the same computer have a safety issue with both a staff member and a customer touching the same computer. Instead, the customer scans a QR code on the computer screen and uses their mobile device to work on the staffer’s computer. Problem solved.
KioTouch was designed and developed by KioWare as a tool to minimize physical contact with shared devices and self-service kiosks to lessen the spread of bacteria, but we are still learning just how capable and powerful KioTouch can be. If you would like to set up a demonstration of KioTouch, please e-mail us at [email protected]. The demonstration is quick and easy as we will share out our computer screen with a QR code displayed that you will scan and take over control of our computer screen. You personally will be able to harness the power of KioTouch through your own personal mobile device.
YORK, Pa. –Elatec, Inc. and KioWare Kiosk System Software have announced they are entering an OEM partnership with the aim of developing products and solutions that are easily paired together. KioWare has added the Elatec TWN4 family of RFID card and NFC and BLE mobile credential readers to its list of supported devices which makes it easy for kiosk deployers to add RFID functionality.
bluetooth kiosk & nfc kiosk & rfid kiosk
Bluetooth NFC Kiosk Device Supplier
Elatec is the leading global provider of solutions related to short-range wireless readers and writers. Offering high-performance multi- and single-frequency RFID devices, both with and without housing, Elatec provides a vast selection of solutions and configurations to accommodate the needs of its customer’s specialized projects. Devices like the TWN4 Slim and TWN4 MultiTech 2 BLE offer an external reader with its own dedicated housing that is integrated into a purposed device in just a few steps, while devices like the TWN4 MultiTech 3 BLE and TWN4 Palon Compact Panel require installation into the purposed device, but are more compact and fit directly into your existing hardware.
Kiosk Software Lockdown Browser Secure Desktop
KioWare offers a wide range of kiosk lockdown and management software solutions for Android, Windows, and Chrome OS devices. Self-service kiosks and purposed devices built on KioWare can utilize features such as restricted browser access; keyboard filtering; pop-up window control; remote content updating; APIs for 3rd party add-ons; and more. KioWare also offers software solutions ranging from the touchless interface for end-users in KioTouch to video conferencing options in KioCall and the powerful kiosk network management tools in KioCloud and KioWare Server.
Effective August 2021, Elatec and KioWare are looking to develop products and solutions that are easily paired together for the benefit of their clients and their end-users. Click here to learn more about Elatec RFID Systems. To learn more about partnering with KioWare please e-mail us at [email protected].
Analytical Design Solutions, Inc. dba KioWare has been in business since 1991 providing IT consulting to businesses of all sizes, is located in York, Pennsylvania, and is a worldwide market leader in the self-service kiosks and purposed device markets. KioWare is kiosk system software that kiosk applications are built on and is used in over 14,000 projects in over 130 countries with project deployments that range from a handful to many thousands of kiosks.
Instead of taking away jobs, self-service technology is opening up a host of new opportunities. A look at how self-service adds employees and also an internal look at compensation for people in the self-service industry.
By Richard Slawsky contributor
Nearly everyone who’s been involved with the self-service technology industry for any length of time has heard the refrain. Applications such as self-order kiosks, patient check-in tablets and similar technologies are allowing evil corporations to replace employees with machines, putting people out of work and eliminating entry-level opportunities.
In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Deploying kiosks to handle mundane tasks such as taking orders or filling out patient forms is helping to increase business for companies that deploy those devices. And far from being a job-killer, the development of self-service technology is creating a host of new job opportunities
Show me the money
While restaurant franchisees tend to view self-service initiatives as an unnecessary expense and employees view them as a threat, in practice the opposite appears to be true.
Sales at Panera Bread’s nearly 500 company-owned stores, for example, were up 6.2 percent in Q1 thanks to the ongoing deployment of Panera 2.0, a suite of technologies designed to improve the customer experience. Those technologies are centered around tablet-based self-order kiosks.
Tablets are made by LILITAB
“The consumer-facing technology results in labor savings for Panera; these hours are redeployed in the café,” Panera Chief Transformation & Growth Officer Blaine Hurst told Business Insider. “In fact, in most cases, Panera increases the number of associate hours in our cafes; and they see increases in overall guest satisfaction.
Probably the biggest explosion in job growth, though, is taking place in the kiosk industry itself. Although studies that purport to put a dollar value on the size of the kiosk industry vary from one to the next, they all agree on one thing: The market is expected to continue growing for the foreseeable future.
Transparency Market Research, for example, pegged the global kiosk market at $12.2 billion in 2015, with that market expected to grow at a 10.9 percent clip over the next eight years, reaching $30.8 billion by 2024.
That growth means tremendous opportunities for people with skills in design, engineering, software creation and sales, to name a few. And in many cases, pay for those positions is well above what other industries are offering.
“You want mechanical engineers with experience.,” Snyder said. “Mechanical engineering in the kiosk industry is very specialized. You want to keep experienced mechanical engineers at all costs.”
Factory floor people are important too, Snyder said.
“You want to keep these guys since it takes about eight months for a factory floor guy to become experienced enough to be productive,” Snyder said. And today, software is such a consideration that hiring software developers has added a whole new pay tier. A kiosk deployer can easily spend several million dollars in setting up a software department.
Sales positions are a bit easier to fill, but the kiosk salesperson has to understand lots of components and the engineering aspects of the various kiosk models being offered by the company. While compensation plans are obviously an uncomfortable topic, and every company has their own practices when it comes to pay for the sales staff, there are some commonalities across the kiosk industry.
“It was kind of a ‘what have you done for me lately’ model,” he said. “Some of the deployments we did were multimillion-dollar deals, so it was very lucrative to get those. You could also make a lot of money on higher-margin deals for deployments of five or six kiosks.”
Commissions were paid once the purchase order was paid, with deployments taking place over months or years paying as the various stages were completed. And in Olmsted’s case, at least, items such as software or service plans provided the opportunity to make higher commissions.
“Those margins were a lot higher because we already had the software in-house,” he said. “Obviously each individual’s going to have different needs and wants, and that’s going to affect commissions.”
Click to expand
The accompanying sidebar gives a rough estimate of what the various positions in a large kiosk manufacturer might pay. Obviously, compensation is likely to be much less in a smaller company, and in many cases one person might hold multiple positions. In addition, salaries depend on factors including the cost of living in a particular community, the value of a particular employee and how long they have been with that company.
Riding the cycle
Staffing a kiosk manufacturer can be made a bit more complicated by the cyclical nature of the kiosk industry. A major deal that keeps a company running at full steam for several months may be followed by a period where the only business is a few five- or six-kiosk deployments. It’s critical, though, to keep those workers in preparation for the next up cycle.
“You need to keep your core experience and adapt to the up-and-down cycles using temp workers,” Snyder said. “Sales and engineering is a bit more complex in that you cannot use temps for salesmen or mechanical engineers.”
It’s the same with project managers and buyers. Companies need to optimize their structure to be able to adapt to sales fluctuations.
“There’s ways to double up,” Snyder said. “An engineer could also be a project manager. You can slip and slide them in between positions that way, but you’ve got to keep a certain amount of people on the bench. Project managers, engineers and factory floor production people are hard to find. If you get one you like, you keep them.”
Complicating matters is the fact that companies are faced with the challenge of competing with other technology industries for qualified employees.
“It’s a challenge, especially when it comes to engineers,” Snyder said.
“It’s really hard to find a good mechanical engineer who has any background in the kiosk world, because it’s a whole different ball game,” he said. “You’re talking about bending metals. You’re talking about bend radiuses and metal stretching when you bend it. You’ve got to be aware of all these things. Usually, a kid coming straight out of college knows the basics but not the specifics of a kiosk operation.”
See sidebar graphic for Tips for sales compensation plans.
Click to expand
As the industry continues to grow, companies can work to overcome those challenges by going out to universities and tout the opportunities the industry holds. Most engineering schools require students to do a co-op as they near graduation, so getting involved with those types of programs can help meet staffing needs as well.
“What they can do to foster it is they can go to universities and say, ‘We have openings for college kids to come in and co-op’,” Snyder said. “Obviously, you’re then going to get a better result if you give them some level of compensation. It doesn’t need to be much, but you have to give them something.”