Userful Corp., a provider of a centralized platform for managing digital signage, announced this week it had expanded its channel efforts to include a partner portal to through which it will administer training a deal registration program.
In addition, Userful has named Kevin Dillon as its vice president for global channels and alliances to lead the channel program.
Useful has developed a platform for managing digital signage based on displays from LG Electronics. Rather than going to the expense of having to connect a PC to each display, the Userful platform loads client software directly on the display that enables content to be streamed over an IP network in much the same way Netflix streams content over the Internet.
While the current instance of the Userful platform is designed to run in an on-premises IT environment, the company is working on a cloud-based version that will make it simpler to manage digital signage distributed at scale.
Right now, Userful has about 50 active partners, says Dillion. But as audio/visual platforms are increasingly connected to networks the number of partners with IT expertise that can manage these systems should start to increase, says Dillion.
“The IT folks have been sorting of waiting for the AV industry to catch up,” says Dillion.
By reducing the overall cost of deploying digital signage solutions, the end goal is not only to increase the overall size of the market but also the profitability of the partners that deliver these solutions, adds Dillion.
Channel partners have been selling various forms of digital signage solutions for years. But as digital signage become connected to the Internet, focus on creating more sophisticated customer experiences that are integrated with mobile computing devices is starting to increase as the amount of network bandwidth being made available become much broader.
Obviously, those types of solution are going to be more complex to build and maintain than the previous generation of digital signage systems. But as every successful channel partner knows, wherever there is complexity there is profit.