Latest Tech

Movavi Video Editor: A Great Alternative to Windows Movie Maker

Up till very recently, Windows Movie Maker was included within the Microsoft Windows operating system in XP, Vista, 7, and 8. Although it can technically be used on Windows 10 as well it needs to be downloaded separately – but is that really ideal? Although you may be familiar with Windows Movie Maker, there are some alternatives out there that could be better – such as Movavi Video Editor.

Think of this as a Movavi Video Editor vs. Windows Movie Maker review that compares both editors side-by-side so that you can see for yourself how they stack up. That can be accomplished based on several criteria that will affect how you use the software:


  • User Interface

One of the hallmarks of Windows Movie Maker is its simple and intuitive user interface, and that is something that Movavi Video Editor is also known for. Both are intuitive, easy to navigate and have multiple language options – which makes it more or less a tie between them.


  • Input and Output Features

Both Movavi Video Editor and Windows Movie Maker support input from videos in numerous formats, but Windows Movie Maker only can save videos in MP4 or WMV – whereas Movavi Video Editor supports a massive range of formats. Additionally Windows Movie Maker does not support 4k videos or Intel Media acceleration, causing it to fall further behind Movavi.


  • Recording Tools

Aside from loading videos that were previously recorded, you can record webcam footage and audio from a microphone using Windows Movie Maker. However Movavi Video Editor not only allows for that, but also supports video capture via HD camcorders, and analog devices such as TV tuners or VHS players.


  • Editing Features

Make no mistake Windows Movie Maker is far from comprehensive, any only has basic editing tools to trim and split videos, stabilize footage, adjust audio automatically, zoom, pan, flip or rotate alongside a few effects, transitions and title presets. On the other hand Movavi Video Editor is a far more robust editor that has all that and includes many more effects, transitions and title presets as well as features such as audio effects, callouts, crop, automatic enhancement, and more.


  • Price

Being freeware, Windows Movie Maker will cost absolutely nothing compared to the $39.95 for the full version of Movavi Video Editor. That being said that price is justified by the huge difference in features – as shown above.


As you can see, Windows Movie Maker is an excellent, simple, and easy-to-use editor that will fit most basic needs. However it pales in comparison to a full-fledged video editor like Movavi Video Editor that will give you more powerful editing features, recording options, and support a much wider range of formats. In short if you want to create great-looking videos, it might be worth investing and making the switch.

Mobile Technology

7 iPhone Myths Lots Of People Still Believe Are Completely True

We live in a world where everyone wants to believe in urban legends. They’re exciting and give us something to talk about when conversations run dry. Unfortunately, there is only one little problem you have to worry about. Nearly every one of these myths you hear is completely untrue.

It’s fun sharing stories with your friends, but it isn’t as nice when they actually begin to affect your life. This happens a lot with people who own an iPhone. There are lots of myths floating about regarding this magical device, so let’s put them to bed for good.

Bluetooth Will Zap Your Battery

This one was actually true once upon a time. If you enabled Bluetooth on your phone the battery would be drained a lot quicker. It meant people would only switch it on when they needed to use it.

You’ll find the Bluetooth technology they use in iPhones these days is much better. You could leave it on all the time and it would have little effect on your battery life if it’s not being used.

Close Your Background Apps

Due to the fact Apple allows you to have apps running in the background, users assume it’s going to affect the battery life on their phone. When you think about it logically it’s hard to see how it wouldn’t.

You’re forgetting one important thing, which is that Apple are a very smart company. They’ve purposefully designed their phones to limit what background apps can do, so if you have a battery problem it’s coming from somewhere else.

Drying Your iPhone In Rice

How would you go about repairing a water damaged iPhone? People say you should bury it in rice because it will absorb all the water. The part about rice absorbing water isn’t a myth and it will work.

The real myth that will cause you pain is burying your iPhone in rice to begin with. Think about how delicate your phone is. Now think about all those particles the rice is going to leave behind to cause damage.

Don’t Charge Your Phone Overnight

You’ll usually hear this myth more than the one about letting your battery run out before recharging it. Both are based on old batteries, so bad things would happen in the past when you charged your phone overnight.

It wouldn’t overcharge the battery, but it would not know when to stop and eventually the maximum charge wouldn’t last as long over time. Nowadays iPhones know when to stop drawing electricity from the mains.

Higher Specs Are Always Better

When it comes to phones size doesn’t really matter. It is how you use it that counts. When companies have lots of RAM or more megapixels it’s sometimes a marketing gimmick to get consumers to buy their product.

For example, an iPhone could be faster than a Samsung phone even though the latter has more RAM, which their fans will love bragging about. Fortunately it’s not always the case, especially when it comes to Apple.

Automatic Brightness Saves Power

Your automatic brightness setting allows your phone to adjust the brightness of the screen depending on the environment you’re in. Although it might have its uses, saving you power isn’t one of them.

When this is switched on your CPU will be pinged multiple times throughout the day. How many times are you in environments where the light changes? This will hurt your battery life more than always having a bright screen.

Only Use The Official Phone Charger

This only really affects Apple users in most cases. People are scared to use anything except the official phone chargers because they’ve been led to believe anything else will damage their phone.

This is only partly true, so don’t worry if you’re abroad and you need to find a replacement in a hurry. A non-official charger will only damage your phone if you buy a cheap knock-off, but good quality ones are okay.

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear

How many of these myths have you already busted yourself? If you’re aware of everything we’ve talked about today you’re in the minority. People actually believe these myths, which you can see will have a negative impact on their lives even if it’s only in a small way.

Latest Tech

4 Reasons Your IT Infrastructure is Broken (and How to Fix it)

Image Credit: Pixabay

Companies tend to make the best of a bad situation, especially when it comes to their IT infrastructure. If things are in some type of working order, they will assume everything is fine and carry on with other tasks. Even though IT is so important to the workings of a modern business, many companies will ignore the updates and changes they need to make to their IT infrastructure. Companies could do with the assistance of IT consultants such as Prosyn to help them determine whether they are doing things in the right way. We can also look at four signs that your IT infrastructure may be broken, and how you could fix it.

1. Software is at the “End of Life

Most software is not meant to last forever. With upgrades or new versions being released, developers often try to phase out a edition after a few years. If you are noticing that your software keeps warning you about the end of its life, you may have to make some changes soon. For instance, you could:

  • Find a new program to perform the same tasks.
  • Check if the software you use has a new version.

2. Using Multiple Systems on One Task

If it takes you four different programs to complete the simplest of tasks, you are doing something wrong. The whole purpose of software and IT with respect to businesses is to make things easier, not more complicated. If you find that you do not have a streamlined way of getting things done online, it means you need to consider upgrading and replacing the software you are currently using. You need software that is more efficient, modern and feature-filled.

3. Running Out of Storage Space

If you are constantly getting calls from your employees, and they keep complaining about how their computers say they are running out of storage space, you are in trouble. Whether it is the physical servers at your office, or the cloud system that you are connected to, you will need to change things up to ensure there is ample space for work to get done. A lack of storage space not only means things are harder to save, but it also means the entire system runs slower. Consult with an IT specialist to figure out alternate storage options if necessary.

4. Employees Use Different Hardware

It is understandable for your employees to own different smartphones, but your office also needs some structure and uniformity when it comes to computers and IT. For instance, your employees should be using the same:

  • computers
  • software for work-related tasks
  • email and task managing applications

If everyone is using different hardware, it is hard to get any consistency with respect to their productivity, or how they manage their work tasks that require computer programs.

5. Applications Are Slow

If your employees spend half their time staring at the computer screen, because everything takes too long to load, you are in trouble. These issues are usually a sign that the computers you are running are too old and not properly optimized. If you are lucky, getting new hard drives is enough, but you may have to get entirely new systems.

Making changes to your IT department is not easy, but these changes are often necessary. Using new software and hardware is a big step, but it is a step that will help increase your company’s productivity in a big way.

Apps and Software

5 Crazy Ways People Are Exploiting Software To Make Money

Software was created to make the world a better place. In a few years it’s going to take over everything while we sit back and watch. It’s even given us the ability to explore outer space. When you consider how important it is to our daily lives, you’ve got to laugh when you spot some of the crazy ways people are using it to make a few bucks. Let’s take a closer look at how they’re actually doing it.

Writing Dating Profiles

Have you ever wondered how so many guys have all the luck on apps like Tinder? There must be a reason why girls are swiping right for them all day long. Perhaps it’s because they’re not even writing their own profiles or choosing the photos they use. Why bother when experts are taking advantage of the software to make money writing dating profiles for guys they don’t even know?

Connecting To Dead Pets

It’s hard enough speaking to pets when they’re alive. They might understand certain commands, but you can’t have a chat with them about sports or politics. Apparently things must change once they’ve passed over to the other side, because you’ll be able to find a medium who will let you connect with them. Skype is the best software in the world for communicating with (living) people, but this sounds like madness.

Rent Out Your Garden

Do you remember when you used to go camping in the woods as a child? It turns out people are more interested in sleeping under the stars while in the city. They will even pay you for the privilege of using your back garden. If you set up an account on Airbnb you will actually be paid to let someone pitch a tent for a night or two on your grass. It’s the closest thing ever to free money.

Playing Video Games

Playing video games is one of the most popular pastimes on the planet, but gamers are taking things one step further. They’re posting videos of them playing games on sites like YouTube, but the strange thing is millions of fans actually watch them every day. The fact they have a crowd isn’t why this makes the list. It’s because the big players in the industry are making millions of dollars per year.

Betting On Sports

Bookmakers rely on software to come up with their odds. You can guarantee all the big guns on BettingTop 10 will have software you wouldn’t be able to comprehend, because there is big money on the line 24 hours per day. Gamblers are getting smart and they’re using their own software to analyze thousands of stats at once, which would be impossible to do in your head even if you were a genius.

All It Takes Is A Good Imagination

Do you have any ideas on how you can exploit the fantastic software we have available these days? You could come up with the next million dollar idea if you’re lucky. I know it’s easy to think everything has been thought of before, but in reality there are an unlimited amount of them out there.

Latest Tech

Why You Need a Kodi Box

The invention of television has been hailed as one of the most important of the 2oth century. The box in the corner is now a staple of every home, and the modern version is a very impressive device indeed. In fact, it could be argued that things took another revolutionary turn with the arrival of the Smart TV, which can access the internet and takes entertainment possibilities to a new level. However, we are going to tell you about an alternative way of getting access to everything you get with a smart TV – and much more – at a mere fraction of the cost. Are you interested? Of course you are, so here’s why you really need a Kodi Box!

What is Kodi?

You may or may not have heard about Kodi boxes, but either way, we reckon we can convince you that you need one! Consider this: you’ll pay a few hundred for a new smart TV, but why would you if you can pay just a few quid for a Kodi box, and get the same benefits? The great things is that Kodi – sometimes referred to as Android TV as it uses that operating system – is open source, and has been developed by many different sources over the past few years. The other great thing is that, once you have bought your Kodi box, you don’t need to pay any more; no subscriptions, nothing, you have access to massive amounts of content already.

There are many different Kodi boxes on the market, and you can find some excellent Kodi box reviews of the best ones at the linked website, so we recommend you consider all the packages that you can find out about. We also recommend that you buy the most capable model you can afford, with plenty of memory for storing your favourite apps and add-ons – we’ll talk more about those in a moment – and the best processor for eliminating buffering. What can you expect from your Kodi box? All-round entertainment at its very best!

Apps and Add-Ons

If you already use a smartphone you will be familiar with apps; they come in many forms, and can provide practical help as well as being fun. With your Kodi box you have access to the same apps you can download to your android phone, and play games on your television! All the family will make use of such a feature, so you can be sure this will be money well-spent. Now, on to add-ons. Your Kodi box will probably come with some add-ons already pre-installed; you’ll be able to access thousands of TV shows, films, and even live sports events, and many come with YouTube ready to use, and social media access at your fingertips.

You can also access apps that allow you to watch the likes of Netflix and other streaming sites, so you have even more content to choose from, and we guarantee that your Kodi box will become the centre of your home entertainment hub, with access to music sites as well as your favourite television shows. You can read reviews of the best Kodi box add-ons and decide which are right for you, but we recommend the live sport add-ons if you are a sports fan, no matter what your favourite is!

How it Works

A Kodi box is the latest in ‘over the top’ – or OTT – broadcasting, which is essentially TV over broadband. You need only a home broadband connection, and you’re ready to go. You simply plug the box in with its leads – usually supplied – and follow the simple set-up instructions to get it ready. You’ll need to give it access to your broadband, so have your password ready! We recommend you buy a package that includes a mini wireless keyboard, as this will make it much easier for you to type in the names of the channels you want to watch, or the apps you need to access.

Are you convinced? We thought you would be! Kodi really is the future of home entertainment, and such a massive saving over buying a smart TV that it really is quite amazing. Have a look at the website we recommended for more information, and get yourself into the 21st century of television, film and apps on your TV!


Automation of Work to Gain Momentum in the Coming Years

With companies like Starbucks opening their doors to the idea of automating their work, it really can be seen that automation of work is going to gain momentum in the coming years.

“Job for every American is doomed to failure because of modern automation and production. We ought to recognize it and create income-maintenance systems so every single American has the dignity and the wherewithal for shelter, basic food and medical care. I am talking about welfare for all. Without it, you are going to have warfare for all,” says Jerry Brown, an American politician and lawyer.

Jerry Brown and many others like him have had the notion that automation really signifies the end for humans when it comes to getting employed by a company.

The question that one is bound to ask is, “If automation spells doom for people, then how come Starbucks has been able to create additional employment avenues for people? Currently, Starbucks has introduced a new system which allows customers to interact with their staff in their drive-through. According to Starbucks, their use of an automated mobile app which allows customers to place their orders online and later pick them up without the need to join any queue has also gone a long way in helping them to gather very important details about their customers.

McKinsey Global Institute carried out a research into the future of work automation and its implication on human labour and it was found out that almost half of the activities being done by humans will in the next 30 to 35 years become tasks for robots. With such a finding, the idea of Starbucks deciding to make use of humans in order to ensure that their services are not fully robotic is very laudable.
Henry Siu, a professor at UBC once said, “Back 50 years ago, there used to be things called typing pools. We don’t have many office administrative support workers as we used to.” This shows that bit by bit, the idea of automating various activities will catch up with majority of people living in Canada and the world at large.

Aside from Starbucks, other companies like A&W and McDonald’s have also started with work automation. This line of action by these companies is presumed to help reduce clients interacting with staffs which bring about unnecessary delays and the forming of long queues. The whole rational behind Starbucks, McDonald’s and A&W going with automated apps is simply to ensure that people are able to access various services in a very effective and efficient manner. This is clearly what Thomas Frey meant when he said, “As we continue down the path of automation, virtually every city will have 24-hour convenience stores, 24-hour libraries, 24-hour banks, 24-hour churches, 24-hour schools, 24-hour movie theatres, 24-hour bars and restaurants, and even 24-hour shopping centres.”

“It is part of the Industrial Revolution” chipped in Leo Stocco, a biomedical engineer at UBC. One of the companies well been known to be adequately equipped when it comes to work automation and robotics is

Whilst automation of work may be viewed as a threat to human workforce, companies like Starbucks and McDonald’s appreciate its ability to help in maximizing revenue in an efficient way.

Latest Tech

Tips for Unburdening Yourself to Make More Time for Creative Writing

Most professionals have to balance work and family life. Professional writers have to balance work, family and creative lives. Once a writing blog gets going, it becomes a business. You end up doing more things as a business owner rather than a writer. As a result, time for creativity will slowly disappear. But if you want your blog or website to continue to be successful, you will have to use that imagination to come up with new ideas. Here are several tips for reducing the workload in your business life so you have more time for creative writing:

Automate Everything that Can be Automated

Do you spend hours a day just scheduling and posting social media posts? Do you conduct calculations by hand? These tasks can easily be automated thanks to new software and apps, most of them free. If you can get a program to automate a certain task in your business, do so immediately. You will have more time in your hands to do something that could never be automated—writing. Don’t waste your precious time doing menial things. Dedicate your time towards only the most important tasks.

Hire IT Consultants

You don’t have to handle the headache-inducing IT stuff of your website or small business by yourself. If your blog or the site is making a profit, you may be able to outsource these tasks to an outside computer consultancy firm. Not only will you have more time for yourself, you will be able to improve the security and productivity of your blog and business. IT consulting in St. Catharines or your local area can help you actually grow your business. So, think seriously about this prospect.

Hire an Intern

Need to engage in live chat with customers? Have to write holiday greetings? If these small tasks are slowly taking over your life, you may need another pair of hands to free up your schedule. It’s more cost-effective to hire an intern or a freelancer to take care of those mindless tasks that require time but not creativity. Delegating tasks to others is a good way to free up your time to focus on the core aspect of you business: writing. Do not neglect this ever in favour of something lesser in importance.

Dedicate Weekly or Daily Times for Writing

Make a time table and schedule everything you have to do. You will spend your time in a more efficient and productive manner in this way. To make sure you have time each day or week for writing, dedicate time slots in your busy schedule just for writing. Do this in parts. For example, assign a day for brainstorming, another for outlining and drafting, and another for polishing up a post. You will have time to concentrate on each stage of writing by breaking them down into parts.

Last but not least, download a note taking software like Evernote on your smartphone or tablet to scribble things down while on the go. Don’t let that time you wait in traffic go to waste. Make the best of every minute by following the suggestions above.

Apps and Software

How to Synchronize Your Data across Multiple Devices

In this article we collected some tips about synchronization of your files, devices, and applications that will ensure you always get the required information.

In the developing world of modern technologies it becomes vital to always stay up-to-date not only in terms of general information and news, but also your personal data. This is why people consider the idea of using Resilio for individuals in order to get access to their personal critical information, such as phone book, essential documents, emails, etc. regardless of their location as well as device used. Today it does not matter if you are sitting at your desktop PC at home or checking emails on the phone because the information will be everywhere. So the question is how you can synchronize all devices together. The answer is right below.


Web Apps and Desktop Software for File Synchronization

One of the most common methods of keeping your devices up to date is the idea of using a variety of apps and software. With the help of these ‘tools’ you will be able to work on a document at home, proceed at work, and finalize it on the way to the meeting from the kindle or tablet. Forget about creating endless copies and sending yourself emails. Now you can do everything faster and more efficient.

Using Portable Devices to Sync Files

Another very common option of synchronization used today is to simply keep the needed file with you all the time. To carry the file you can use a portable device such as hard drive or a USB flash drive. Do not forget that you can also use your phone or even camera as a storage. In this case you can either use with the files directly from the device the file is stored at or use software to sync between the computer and your external drive. Though it is an old-school version of synchronizing your devices, you should understand that in this case some kind of software will be of great use too.

Keeping Everything in Sync

Another possibility to always have access to the latest information and progress of yours is to simply adjust your devices settings into the synchronization mode. It means that whenever you may any changes to your list of contacts, calendar, notes, write some emails, or any other changes that you want to sync, they will be backed up in the cloud, usually, so that you can see all of them from any device needed.

As you can see, there is nothing extremely complicated in device synchronization process. You need to only adjust a little in the beginning to enjoy the long-term benefits later.
Rebecca Warner is established as a reviewer for a line of digital publications (comprising businesses similar to Resilio peer to peer synchronization software), who sheds light on a variety of digital topics and areas alike. A proud vagabond of online space and a true connoisseur of all things related to the convenience of digital world.

Latest Tech

London Businesses Benefit From Local SEO

When you run a local business in London, Ontario, you may wonder why you need an SEO campaign to get noticed and bring in new customers – don’t they drive past your sign or see your ad in the papers? The truth is, search engines like Google and Bing are the best advertisers you have, with almost everyone turning to them to find goods and services. Don’t despair if you’re not sure how you can compete when there are hundreds of similar businesses across the globe that do what you do in other cities – search engines have realized that people are looking for local results and reward SEO strategies that target specific regions. Here are some of the strategies that you should focus on when you turn to an SEO service in London, Ontario.

Citations – Google and other engines are the new Yellow Pages (even if the Yellow Pages are still around) and many people turn to search engines in order to find out what kind of businesses offering a particular product or service are in their area, where they’re located, and what their hours of operation are. One of the aspects of expert SEO services in London, Ontario is making sure your business’s information is widely available in a number of web directories that Google uses to find this information and display when your business turns up as a relevant result. It’s essential that your hours and contact information are up to date online, especially now that more and more searches are leading to click-to-calls from smartphones, as people go directly from a results page to calling the business, without even visiting the website.


Voice Search – Experts today point to the importance of designing long tail keywords that are more likely to be spoken than typed because of the major shift in mobile searches toward voice commands. It’s far easier to tell your phone to look for “deep dish pizza in London, Ontario” than to type it out and this allows you to look something up while you’re preoccupied (the three most common times people voice search are when they are watching television, socializing, and cooking). When you’re looking for an SEO guru, find a company like Digital Clicks Marketing in London that understands long tail keywords to improve your business’s local search results.

Mobile Optimization – With more and more searches being conducted on mobiles, Google’s algorithm has adjusted accordingly and now rewards sites that have been optimized for mobile. This means that they load quickly on a smartphone and layout is adjusted when viewing it on a mobile for easier navigation. There are plenty more advantages to getting a mobile optimized site: smartphone users are more likely to be looking for local results and they are more likely to lead to actions (i.e. purchases or booking an appointment).

When you need an SEO company London has many to offer, including locals Digital Clicks Marketing, capable of providing end-to-end strategies including web design, mobile optimization, SEO, SEM, and PPC. The only way to get noticed online today is to come up with a comprehensive plan that targets all facets of digital marketing, concentrating on local searches and optimizing your website. It’s never been more urgent to get your brand noticed online – it’s sink or swim when it comes to SERPs, so make sure you work with the right people.

Latest Tech

Compare Digital Signage Software

What is digital signage?

Digital signage uses a mix of hardware components (PC, Android device, System on Chip – SoC), some type of display (LED, LCD, projector, etc.) and CMS software to deliver live news, information and media content to an audience.


Why is digital signage so popular?

Digital signage’s popularity has taken off in the past 15 years due to many factors.  For starters, hardware components have become smaller, better and cheaper.  What once required a full-tower PC hidden in a wiring closet, has now shrunk smaller than your average TV remote.  System on Chip “smart” displays even have the computer embedded inside them.  Today, SoC displays deliver the same performance as a full-fledged PC, and some may soon exceed these capabilities withbetter playback quality and 4K content support.

Since the hardware is integrated into a single unit, SoC displays offer substantial cost savings and ease of installation.  There are no longer any wires hanging from the back of the displays and external PC or Android device to steal making them ideal for commercial use.

Another important factor is the availability of professional content creation and editing tools.  Smartphones can now capture video at 4K resolutions, with a quality that rivals pro equipment of only a few years ago.  Combine this with high quality stock footageavailable online, and you have all the ingredients for success.

The last piece of the puzzle is the software running the show.  Most digital signage applications require some type of CMS software.  That would be the content management system people use to manage and create content, prepare schedules or set up rules that determine when and how content will be played.  Most CMS software requires a media player of some sort.  In other cases, the CMS may simply display the content in a full screen web browser.  CMS products often feature a dashboard of sorts, so end-users can interact with the system.  Then you have the different types of CMS products.  Some are delivered via the cloud (as in, Software as a Service, or SaaS) and others require a local server of some type which is managed by the end-user, or by a technical resource.

CMS software has evolved a lot since the industry’s early days.  Today’s CMS software is easier to install, use, and manage than the early products.  There are still products that are more complex and require specific technical expertise, but the trend is leaning towards user friendliness.

When you put it all together, it’s easy to see why the sector has taken off and become so popular.

Who uses digital signage?

The digital signage industry has achieved some sort of “critical mass”, since all the pieces are readily available and more affordable than ever.  Less technical knowledge is required, so more and more people use digital signage for all sorts of uses:

  • Engaging customers and staff.
    • Lobby welcoming screen.
    • Information kiosk.
    • Employee training.
  • Presenting statistics, financial information, real-time data.
    • Informational dashboards.
    • Stock prices.
    • Currency prices.
    • Call-center statistics.
    • Sales figures.
  • Advertising products and services.
    • Restaurant menu boards.
    • Retail, point-of-sale signage.
    • Indoor and outdoor advertising (d-o-o-h).
  • Industrial and commercial applications.
    • Employee productivity statistics.
    • General information.
    • Safety notices.
    • Emergency/evacuation notices.
  • Museums and attractions.
    • Exhibit signage.
    • Queue management.
    • Donor walls.
    • Patient notification.
    • Waiting room infotainment.

These are but a few applications and industries that benefit from digital signage displays.

Which software features should I be looking for?

Looking at the components that make up digital signage, and knowing how the technology is used is the first step in this process.  Your next question should be; which features are the most important for your needs.  More specifically, what makes one CMS software stand out from the rest.

To answer this, we must look at what makes a professional-gradeCMS software.

  • Multi-platform media player support. This means you can deploy many types of hardware on the same CMS software.  Multi-platform support can be extremely useful because you’re not “locked-in” to a specific technology.  For example, you can start your project on PCs and deploy SoC screens later on.  You get to pick the right hardware combination for each location.
  • Web-based dashboard. Modern CRM solutions use HTML5 to deliver a professional user experience without having to install local software.  These HTML5 dashboards provide all the functionality of a locally installed app once the end-user is logged into the system.  All that’s required is a URL, login name and password to get access to the system from any location.  The best CMS solutions also support multiple platforms such as PCs, tablets and smartphones.  Having the ability to access and program content from anywhere is now a must, which is why it should be on your list.
  • Native software vs interpreted software. It is estimated that 90% of digital signage software players are based on interpreted languages.  Coding software using this method is less costly and less expensive, however there are some major trade-offs.  Interpreted software tends to be less secure, less reliable and less efficient than the alternative.  Native software requires a lot of resources and more capital investment but the results are well worth it.  Native digital signage player software will perform measurably better than interpreted software.  Content playback is smoother and more reliable on target hardware platform.  This should factor very highly in any comparison between software products.
  • Ease of use and deployment. Look for software that is easy to use and doesn’t require any specific technical skills.  Remember that a product’s UI can make, or break your next project.  Software with an obscure and complex interface just ends up frustrating end-users.  Training costs soar and user adoption eventually drops until the project fails, or the software is replaced.  Avoid these pitfalls by selecting a CMS with a user-friendly front-end that people will actually use. When reviewing multiple solutions, always remember this rule… Training should take hours, not weeks.
  • Look for software that scales well. Maybe you’re looking at a small deployment of only a few displays.  For you, scalability isn’t a key deciding factor.  However, consider your situation may evolve over time and your needs may change.  If you pick a CMS that isn’t scalable, you may be forced to make some hard choices.  Like switching products in mid-deployment or scaling back your project, or worse.  Think of the investment in time and effort to become proficient with a CMS product.  The learning curve and the hardware investment required to have a fully functional display network.  Take the time to look at every CMS software as if it was the last product you will buy.
  • Look for “open” software that integrates easily. There are CMS products that are limited in what they can do, and how they can be integrated with other products.  Think of situations where you may need to exchange data with other software, or automate certain processes to save time.  Professional-grade CMS software products are open to other software and technologies.  These solutions offer software development kits (SDKs) and APIs, so you can extend their capabilities.

    Here are some examples of what an open system can do:

    • Trigger evacuation messages from an automated alarm system.
    • Integrate with audience detection systems to trigger content based on the audience’s age or sex.
    • Automate content uploads.
    • Generate automated playback reports.
    • Turn digital displays on or off based on a schedule.

There are all sorts of CMS software products on the market.  You can evaluate them based on price or features.  When looking for a specific product, don’t just consider the cost of acquiring the software.  Think of all the related costs.  This may sound counter-intuitive but in the long run you may find that buying cheap software can actually be a very expensive proposition.  Look at what you need now, and plan for tomorrow. Navori is a great company who has perfected the art of digital signage software. For more information on their services and how they can assist you, visit their website at Lastly, consider the cost of hardware, installation and training.  Think how much you would spend to switch to another platform if you pick the wrong one.