Databeat OMNIboard has been "the cool project we never started". In the early COVID days, when we were all locked in, Databeat Development Team decided to change that. After a few intense months, we have some really cool results. But, what is it?
From Digital Signage to Screen Publishing
For several years, hundreds of customers in the Nordics have been using DatabeatOMNI to publish content for "Digital Signage" purposes to thousands of screens. In the last few years, we have seen increased interest. Soon, we will have more than a thousand customers across "all" sectors, from the smallest to the largest organizations in the public and private sector, including several non-profit organizations and sports clubs.
The DatabeatOMNI publishing platform is on Microsoft Azure and utilizes many Azure features. Since 2018 we have integrated with Google G-Suite and Office 365 and with Microsoft's rapid development and tighter integration of the Office 365 suite. We like to think that DatabeatOMNI has grown to be the most flexible screen publishing platform in the market today.
DatabeatOMNI has a web-app (with the same name). Up to now, it has been the only way to access the platform. With the increased flexibility and various use, we plan for three more apps that all share and use the same platform, but with more specific purposes. Everything will still be possible to do with the generic DatabeatOMNI app, but we believe it will be simpler and more efficient for users with specific apps for specific purposes.
Welcome to OMNIboard
The first new app to be launched is Databeat OMNIboard. Existing DatabeatOMNI users will recognize the much used Screen Designer (and indeed, Screendesigner will soon have the same look and feel as OMNIboard), Conceptually OMNIboard is somewhat different from standard Digital Signage. Often Digital Signage has looping full-screen content with focused messages made for standard large screen monitors in stores, offices and public places. But the increased use of DatabeatOMNI for other purposes made us rethink this concept. Still based on the same core principles, we built OMNIboard around a standard - self-defined - background on which users can add widgets of all sorts. Think of it as a digital message board, where you can define your layout by dragging and configuring various widgets to the board.
Widgets can be anything that works on the web. We included Channel-In-Channel, to be a self-defined "digital signage" loop from DatabeatOMNI.
We are also working on video streams from your favorite broadcaster or partner (with the new Databeat Global Channel concept), news-streams (RSS), public transport information, weather, and much more.
We welcome customers to make widgets with our new "Code widget" and new template interface.
Many customers like our newly introduced Power BI widget. With it, users can add their own Power BI reports or Dashboard directly to an OMNIboard. It requires Office 365 login because we base the security on Microsofts Office 365 authentication and roles. Using Microsoft's best practices is very important for us (and our customers).
So, we have a flexible Publishing platform, and by the way, it can be used and tested at no cost, pls feel free to sign up.
How do we distribute and show content to screens?
We have Databeat OMNIplay, a software player that can be installed directly on Samsung, LG, and Philips professional LFDs with built-in hardware (SoC) as well as Android and Windows devices. We designed OMNIplay as a Digital Signage player to run unattended with automatic start, stop according to schedules, and overlooked by advanced management software (OMNIcontrol).
The current COVID crisis has dramatically reduced footfall in offices, stores, and public places. Instead, we are spending more time at home or closer to home using our LapTops, home PCs, or mobile devices. Therefore, we saw a need to bring DatabeatOMNI and OMNIboard content to other screens, Home and Office PCs, Tablets, and SmartPhones so that users can have content on their device, running as a start/stop the app or, as a screensaver. Here, OMNIboard on a Samsung Galaxy Smartphone as a screensaver, including live TV from NRK.
Databeat OMNIcast also opens up for personal login so employees or private consumers can even use OMNIboard at home, to see things relevant at home. We know that several organizations find it hard to communicate information to home-office users, so we opened up to use OMNIboard as an app or a screensaver on there home computer. By using Office 365 roles, managers can create channels or OMNIboard to their department. The DatabeatOMNI publishing platform distributes content to members of the Office group.
Also, OMNIboard will be available for personal use, I am testing it at my kitchen, and I intend to keep it there.
As the founder of Databeat, I very much welcome feedback from customers, users, partners and others, only together can we improve products and services.
Feel free to reach out, and please - stay safe.
Databeat.Net AS. July 2020
Øyvind Andhøy / Founder CEO
Head of Development