News Briefs

  • 10/30/2023

    PPDS Launches New ‘Sized Up’ 32” Philips Tableaux ePaper Display Including Latest E Ink Spectra™ 6 Technology for Hospitality Environments

    Digital Signage from PPDS

    PPDS, the exclusive global provider of Philips Professional Displays and complementary solutions, is delighted to announce the latest evolution of its multi-award-winning ePaper signage range, with the launch of the new 32” (16:9) Philips Tableaux 5150I for hotel and other hospitality environments.

    Extending PPDS’ global strategy and commitment to bringing high-impact, more sustainable, energy conscious solutions to market, the new 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I signals a breakthrough in technology for larger form factor full colour ePaper displays, with PPDS once again at the forefront of innovation for this rapidly growing market, forecast to be worth almost $43.2 billion by 2030*. 

    PPDS opened a new era of display technology during ISE 2023 (Jan 31-3 Feb), becoming the world’s first leading display manufacturer to introduce a full size and full colour digital signage display into the market, with the debut of its 25” Philips Tableaux. 

    Widely hailed as the world’s most energy efficient digital signage offering – and the ideal energy saving solution for hotels looking to digitise their paper-based signage while also enhancing their sustainability credentials –Philips Tableaux captured the attention and imaginations of event attendees, partners, and customers around the world, thanks to its unique capabilities providing vivid 24/7 content while unplugged and entirely power-free. 

    Next level technology 

    The new 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I takes PPDS’ ePaper portfolio to the next level, whether used as a standalone solution – such as in a bar, café, or restaurant – or as part of a fleet of displays across multiple hotel locations around the world.

    Martijn van der Woude, VP Global Marketing and Business Development at PPDS, commented: “At ISE 2023 we changed the game for digital signage with the introduction of our zero power consumption 25” Philips Tableaux Series.”

    “Philips Tableaux ePaper displays offer a more sustainable solution that eliminates the need for paper consumption and waste, and the effects these would have on the environment. For 2024, we are leading the market once again with our new 32” model, bringing next generation ePaper technology forward. We can’t wait for you to see it.”

    A new platform for success

    Responding to market feedback and working closely with long-term Philips Professional Displays R&D partner, E Ink – the originator, pioneer, and global commercial leader in ePaper technology – the new 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I brings all the great benefits enjoyed on the 25” Philips Tableaux, together with additional features. 

    As part of an unrivalled working relationship, backed by an inherent desire by both companies to lead from the front at all times, the 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I becomes the world’s first signage display confirmed to run on E Ink’s ‘revolutionary’ and highly anticipated E Ink Spectra 6 colour platform.

    Tailored for use on the Philips Tableaux – incorporating PPDS’ small bezels – the E Ink Spectra 6™ 31.5” platform delivers previously unachievable colour performance, using enhanced colour algorithms to provide a true print quality replacement for any paper sign on the 2560 x 1440, 16:9 digital display. 

    Andrea Barbuti, Global Product Manager at PPDS, commented: “When seeing the Philips Tableaux 5150I in action, it is almost impossible to comprehend that you’re looking at a digital display and not a poster.

    “Portrait or landscape mountable, the 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I is a perfect replacement for any paper-based communication – from posters, menus, in-store advertising and promotions, wayfinding, and timetables through to store opening hours. The opportunities are endless.”

    Remote management 

    As the latest member of PPDS’ ever-growing Android SoC family, the 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I Series can be managed manually, or remotely using third party or PPDS’ in house software. This includes PPDS Wave - the company’s exclusive secure cloud platform, providing advanced and effortless remote device management capabilities for Android SoC Philips Professional Display fleets of any size and in any location.

    As on the 25” Philips Tableaux Series, the new 32” 5150I model can display static imagery without drawing on any energy source, only requiring super low power input when content is being updated.

    For fixed installations, and in environments where regular image changes are required, the Philips Tableaux 5150I features Power over Ethernet (PoE), ensuring both power and connectivity for remote management.

    With 16GB of internal memory and 2GB RAM, content can just as easily be updated via the USB, micro USB, Micro SD, LAN and WiFi 5 by simply plugging the Philips Tableaux 5150I into a nearby power source.

    Details on availability and pricing will be announced in early 2024, with demonstrations due to take place throughout ISE in Barcelona and InfoComm in Las Vegas next year.

    Robert Hsu, VP Global Product Strategy at PPDS, commented: “Our new 32” Philips Tableaux 5150I represents far more than simply an upgrade in size. This is a technological breakthrough. Whether used as a standalone display, together with our 25” models, or as part of a wider network of professional displays, Philips Tableaux is delivering some incredible new opportunities for almost any business. We have already seen Philips Tableaux installed into a myriad of wonderful environments, surpassing even our imaginations, and with this new 32” model we expect this to accelerate further.”

    “We are excited PPDS has adopted our full colour E Ink Spectra™ 6 for their new Tableaux 5150I Series and will be the first to implement our new 31.5” module,” said Johnson Lee, CEO of E Ink. “E Ink is committed to working with partners like PPDS to create sustainable signage that delivers the benefits of digital content with the aesthetic of print quality, while being incredibly power efficient.”

    Martijn van der Woude concluded: “As a business driven by teamwork, at PPDS we truly value our partnership with E Ink and we are delighted to continue leading the ePaper signage market forward with their groundbreaking technology. The reaction to the launch of our Philips Tableaux has been huge – well beyond our expectations. With today’s 32” announcement, and with PPDS becoming the first to confirm an ePaper display on the E Ink Spectra™ 6 platform, we fully expect that trend to continue.”

    *EPaper growth statistics: E-Paper Display Market: Global Industry Analysis, Potential Growth, Key Players and Latest Trends – A Market Place Research

    AND: The E-Paper Display Market Size Is Expected To Grow At An (globenewswire.com)

  • 10/30/2023

    Lightspeed Announces New Product Features

    logo

    Lightspeed Commerce Inc.  is announcing a roster of new product features recently released to merchants.  

    From AI-powered menu creation to self-serve assortment planning and continued expansion of Lightspeed Payments, each new feature has been custom-built with one goal in mind: eliminate mundane tasks that bog down retailers and restaurateurs, making it easier and more efficient to run their businesses. 

    “Merchants start businesses out of passion, not because they love spending hours on inventory, reconciliation, or schedules,” said Ryan Tabone, Chief Product and Technology Officer of Lightspeed. “Our job as their technology partner is to empower them with the tools that simplify how they operate, so they can focus on their customers and scale their business. This latest round of new product features is the start of a string of functionality that gives them that ability, as well as an edge in their respective markets.”

    Lightspeed Restaurant leverages AI, data and insights to help restaurateurs make smarter decisions, faster:

    Smart Items: the AI secret ingredient to building a chef's-kiss menu in seconds

    New seasons means time for new menus. But what used to take hours of inputting and updating the POS now takes seconds with Lightspeed Restaurant’s newest launch: Smart Items. This transformative solution:

    • Generates compelling product information
    • Creates captivating images to match
    • Auto translates the menu into multiple languages to service the languages you operate in

    Whether restaurateurs are managing an extensive 100-item menu or starting from scratch, Smart Items can save them valuable time: up to 30 minutes per 100-item menu, or even hours and days for those building content from the ground up.

    Advanced Insights levels up with Magic Menu Quadrant and Staff Performance Tools

    Lightspeed Restaurant’s proprietary Advanced Insights tool just got a powerful boost with two features, now available on our flagship product globally: 

    • Magic Menu Quadrant, offering merchants insights into popular items and those that encourage repeat dining.
    • Staff Performance tools help managers optimize their front-of-house team's performance, from increasing order sizes to cross-training.

    When it comes to seeing these features brought to life, Jarred Drown, Owner of Terrace Bay Hotel and Freshwater Tavern in Gladstone, Michigan shared that "Lightspeed’s Magic Menu Quadrant helps us expand while turning a profit on every order." What’s more, Francine Joseph, Business Manager from Boukan in Toronto, Canada said that “One of the greatest features we have now that we didn’t have before is capturing customer data. We always encourage our staff to capture, especially our loyal customers, repeat customers, because they’re spending money here and what we want to be able to do is reward that."

    Lightspeed Retail simplifies purchasing and planning for sophisticated retailers and brands: Speed up vertical and target assortment planning 

    Brands that operate their own retail stores can reduce manual work (and the frequency of data-entry errors) by using NuORDER Assortments to optimize inventory allocation, identify merchandising gaps, and make more informed range planning decisions. 

    “Implementing NuORDER Assortments meant more accurate roll ups and a clear process to write smarter buys,” said Stephanie Gin, Director of Buying, Brunello Cucinelli. “We now get an immediate visual of the assortment thus making it much easier to analyze and review. The tool has replaced all manual processes and has become essential to our buying process.”

    For multi-brand retailers, NuORDER Assortments now allows both merchants and brands to efficiently load and manage financial or allocation targets, which enables them to compare their assortment against planned spend and making it easier to see where they are over and under invested. As they write their units, buyers can review how their totals measure against their targets for different departments, categories or other product groupings.

    Additionally, onboarding new brands to NuORDER Assortments is completely self-service, allowing for automated mapping of their product schema into an assortment schema and enabling the brand to configure their setup.

    Millions of products, thousands of brands, now available across all major Lightspeed Retail verticals

    With Lightspeed Retail's B2B Catalog expanding across all major verticals such as Fashion & Apparel, Sporting & Outdoor goods, Bikes, Toys & Crafts, Home & Lifestyle, retailers can now add product info from millions of products from thousands of popular brands straight to their product catalog. This is significantly quicker than adding products manually, and merchants can ensure that all product info, images, descriptions, UPC and more are correct and verified from the supplier, making it quicker than ever to start selling new products.

    Create, schedule, track, and sell service offerings directly inside Lightspeed Retail 

    After a successful beta launch, our Services Module is now available on Lightspeed Retail everywhere. Better yet, it now lets merchants include backordered items. This module is best served by retailers with service components like bikes, sporting goods, jewelry.  

    Lightspeed Payments continues to expand availability globally

    Lightspeed remains dedicated to simplifying complex processes for their merchants on all fronts, including Lightspeed Payments. Unified into both flagship products—Lightspeed Retail and Restaurant—Lightspeed Payments continues its global expansion:

    • Lightspeed Payments is now available for eligible merchants via Lightspeed eCom in Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and Belgium.
    • Lightspeed Payments is now available on Lightspeed Restaurant in Belgium and the Netherlands.

    With these launches, Lightspeed Payments is now available in Australia, Canada, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, France, Netherlands, United States and United Kingdom, making international transactions more accessible and convenient for businesses of all sizes. Learn more about Lightspeed Payments on the Company’s Lightspeed Retail or Lightspeed Restaurant websites. 

  • 10/30/2023

    Shift4 Completes Acquisition of eCommerce Payments Provider

    a hand holding a piece of paper

    Shift4, a provider of integrated payments and commerce technology, has completed its previously announced acquisition of Finaro, a cross-border ecommerce payments provider and fully licensed bank with a large European presence. The completion of this acquisition significantly expands Shift4’s total addressable market both in terms of geographic coverage and industry verticals.

    Finaro will provide the global infrastructure and cutting-edge technology needed to drive Shift4’s international expansion into Europe and beyond. In addition to expanding Shift4’s geographic footprint, the acquisition will enhance the company’s cross-border ecommerce capabilities to deliver a unified global payments platform for merchants and partners around the world.

    “Finaro is highly complementary to Shift4 in terms of geographic coverage, capabilities, and addressable markets. It also empowers us to follow our existing strategic customers into new markets which represents a significant opportunity,” stated Shift4 CEO Jared Isaacman. “By coupling Shift4’s card-present solutions with Finaro’s strengths in cross-border ecommerce, the combined organization offers a truly unified commerce experience that can compete with the biggest payments companies in the world.”

    Isaacman added, “With Finaro’s tech center based in Israel, we realize that this comes during an extremely difficult time for those employees and their loved ones. The ability to work together during these trying times is a testament to the talent and character of everyone on the Finaro team. We are proud to welcome them into our Shift4 family.”

    This acquisition not only augments Shift4’s ecommerce offering, but will also enable Shift4 to soon offer its card-present technology across Europe – including the company’s SkyTab restaurant point-of-sale system and VenueNext stadium solution. Additionally, Shift4 has more than 500 software integrations and over 200,000 merchant customers, many of which have a multinational presence and provide immediate international opportunities that can now be unlocked as a result of this acquisition.

    Finaro will soon rebrand as Shift4 to operate under a single brand reflecting the company’s unified global payments platform. To learn more about Shift4, visit www.shift4.com.

  • 10/30/2023

    Holiday Travel Trends Report from iSeatz Reveals Disconnect Between Travelers and Loyalty Programs

    iseatz

    iSeatz, a leading provider of travel loyalty technology solutions, has released its latest survey report that examines American consumers' priorities for holiday travel in 2023 and how loyalty programs can leverage opportunities to engage travelers during the upcoming season.

    The report, The Tipping Point for Travel Loyalty: 2023 Holiday Travel Trends,  is based on a survey conducted by iSeatz in August 2023, which polled over 2,000 consumers in the United States belonging to a loyalty program that incorporates travel-related rewards and 151 loyalty program professionals across industries.

    Among the report's key findings is the fact that travel loyalty programs are well-positioned to provide the reward and redemption options that make holiday travel more attainable for members while capitalizing on the heightened interest in travel that the season usually brings, but many don't consistently deliver the value they promise.

    2023 Consumer Insights: Unpacking Holiday Travel Trends

    The survey uncovers a US traveler demographic keen to journey but still way of high prices. It also reveals their appetite for more deals and value. Key insights from the report include:

    • Consumers plan to travel more this holiday season than in 2022: While just 40% of U.S. adults surveyed traveled last holiday season, a notable 54% are gearing up for holiday trips this year.
       
    • Price was a driving factor last year and maybe this year, too: 45% of the 60% of the consumers who didn't travel in the previous holiday season attributed their decision to affordability concerns, either due to steep prices or insufficient travel rewards. This year, value remains at the forefront of travelers' considerations.
       
    • Loyalty programs can help consumers offset travel costs: 42% of consumers would travel more during the holidays if they got more discounts through their loyalty program, and 32% would if they had more points available to help offset the cost of the trip.
       
    • Loyalty programs could be offering members more: Surveyed consumers said they would welcome their loyalty programs' help with holiday travel costs, but 45% reported that their loyalty programs aren't doing anything at all to offer benefits for the holiday period.

     

  • 10/30/2023

    Alice by Actabl Now Available on Oracle Cloud Marketplace

    oracle and alice by actabl logos

    Actabl, a provider of hospitality software that empowers hotels with actionable insights and a member of Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN), announced Alice by Actabl is available on Oracle Cloud Marketplace and can be integrated with Oracle Hospitality Integration Platform (OHIP). Oracle Cloud Marketplace is a centralized repository of enterprise applications offered by Oracle and Oracle partners.

    Alice by Actabl enables high level business benefits. This integration between Alice and OHIP allows staff and management to improve the accuracy of guest information and increase efficiency through the delivery of:

    ●       Booking information whenever reservations are created or modified,

    ●       Guest arrival statuses such as check-in, check-out, and special requests,

    ●       Room and housekeeping status.

    Oracle Cloud Marketplace is a one-stop shop for Oracle customers seeking trusted business applications offering unique business solutions, including ones that extend Oracle Cloud Applications. Oracle Cloud is an enterprise cloud that delivers massive, non-variable performance and next generation security across a comprehensive portfolio of services including SaaS, application development, application hosting, and business analytics. Customers get access to leading computing, storage, data management, security, integration, HPC, artificial intelligence (AI), and Blockchain services to augment and modernize their critical workloads. Oracle Cloud runs Oracle Autonomous Database, the industry's first and only self-driving database.

    “Working on this with the team at Oracle has been great and we appreciate having a partner who shares our mission to make innovative, state-of-the-art technology accessible to hoteliers. Actabl’s integration with OHIP further extends our commitment to the Oracle community and enables customers to easily reap the benefits of Alice by Actabl” said Pritesh Patel, director of product integrations, Actabl. “We look forward to leveraging the power of the Oracle Cloud to support our customers’ day-to-day operations, growth, and ongoing success.”

    Actabl is actively building a comprehensive platform for hotel intelligence and operations management technology demonstrating its dedication to delivering exceptional customer experiences and continuous product improvements. With a strong focus on customer engagement and learning, Actabl has attended over 60 conferences in 2023, providing individualized training to enhance customer knowledge and maximize software utilization. Additionally, the company has increased team capacity and introduced new measurement tools to expedite implementation timelines.

    "Actabl's integration with OHIP has given us a significantly more stable and reliable PMS integration, resulting in smoother operations, increased associate confidence, and reduced support needs,” said Jeremy Campbell, senior corporate manager of property systems, Montage International. “We are fortunate to have such an incredible partnership with Alice by Actabl and their amazing team.”

  • 10/30/2023

    Mews Adds Expedia Group to Its Collection of Direct OTA Integrations

    MEWS Expedia logos

    Mews has released a bespoke integration to Expedia Group that allows properties to connect the Online Travel Agency (OTA) directly to Mews PMS.

    The direct connection automatically updates prices, restrictions and availability in Expedia Group whenever changes are made in Mews Operations. This real-time link reduces the risk of overbookings, decreases sales discrepancies and can reduce the cost of ownership of a hotel’s tech stack.

    This follows other direct OTA connections to Mews, including booking.com – which recently recognized Mews as a Premier Connectivity Partner – and dayuse.com, where hotels can increase their revenue by offering daytime reservations.

    Mews also offers a direct connection to Google Hotel Search, which allows hotels to display their live rates via Google, encouraging more direct bookings. Learn more about the Google Hotel Search connection in this webinar.

    “OTAs like Expedia Group are important distribution tools for hoteliers, and the Mews team has worked hard to build this direct connection,” said Matt Welle, Mews CEO. “Expedia Group is one of the two biggest reservation sources for Mews customers, and this integration will empower properties to better manage their inventory, consolidate tech stacks, and boost profit margins."

    Although the latest integration will help hoteliers across the world, it is of particular importance in the United States, where Expedia Group is a heavily favored booking channel.

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