Jan 23, 2009 (07:01 PM EST)
Startup Of The Week: Hiperwall
Read the Original Article at InformationWeek
Call it the Times Square effect. Digital photos, video, and high-resolution graphics are pushing the limits of desktop and other wide-screen monitors. Hiperwall specializes in so-called video walls, giant displays comprised of a dozen or more LCD monitors assembled together. The startup is aiming its platform at applications beyond marketing and entertainment, including trading floors, utilities, and command centers.
HEADQUARTERS: Irvine, Calif.
Hiperwall Inc. was founded a year ago to take the technology to market. Video walls are assembled of display nodes, with each node consisting of a monitor and a PC that renders an image for that monitor. Since each monitor has its own PC, the system has virtually unlimited scalability, according to CEO Jeff Greenberg. The vendor has demonstrated 40 LCD monitors combined into a display that's 10 feet high and 27 feet across. The use of off-the-shelf PC and Ethernet networking keeps costs down, and the system can accommodate a variety of display types, including LCD, plasma, CRT, and "organic LED."
A Hiperwall system can display a single image or multiple images, and users can move, zoom, and otherwise manipulate images on the wall. In addition, users can share the content of desktop PC screens--financial trading data or maps, for example--with other people in a room by displaying them on a wall. Target markets for the system include control rooms (for airlines and utilities, for example) and scientific and medical imaging.
Hiperwall's technology makes for visually compelling presentations. Check out a demonstration video of Google Earth on a 270-square-foot wall display, and you immediately begin to appreciate the possibilities.
However, the company has only a few employees, lacks venture capital or other funding, and has yet to land its first bona fide customer. Prospective customers should ask about overall cost and how Hiperwall will support its technology. Working in Hiperwall's favor is a recent OEM agreement with Samsung Electronics, which is now distributing and supporting the Hiperwall technology in its LCDs.