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The Future is Now: Embedded Solutions Outdo Back to the Future Predictions

October 21st, 2015 marked a significant day for many- it was the day that the Chicago Cubs won the World Series, “Goldie” Wilson Jr. continued his campaign for re-election as Mayor of Hill Valley, and Emmett “Doc” Brown and Marty McFly successfully traveled 30 years into the future from the year 1985 in a time traveling DeLorean.

Ok, none of that really happened last week; it’s actually just the plot of the classic film, “Back to the Future Part 2.”

While many of Back to the Future Part 2’s future predictions were proven incorrect by the test of time (flying cars, fashion trends, Jaws 19, etc.); the film was correct in predicting the important role of digital signage in modern society for retail in ways that even Doc and Marty couldn’t imagine.

The retail industry has changed significantly with advanced “smart” technology and the Internet of Things (IoT). Companies can now learn more about their customer’s preferences, purchasing habits and behaviors to recommend specific products, services and information to customers by utilizing purchasing information gathered by POS/kiosk systems. Digital signage players, touch panel PCs, IoT gateway solutions, and embedded motherboards are becoming integrated to collect and disburse information, enhance efficiency and end-user’s experience, and maximize profitability in retail environments.

With products like Axiomtek’s OPS883, retail advertising and promotion as well as entertainment messages through digital signage system displays can be informative; with easily changeable content that can be customized for targeted audience groups; and even made to be interactive. Much like the scene in the Café 80’s where Marty sees kiosks featuring virtual versions Michael Jackson and Ronald Reagan talking to guests about the restaurant’s menu- digital signage players can deliver customizable messages to patrons to enhance their experience.

The OPS compliant digital signage player supports up to 4K resolution, offers high reliability and compatibility with displays. The OPS883 allows for remote management for enhanced efficiency. It offers easy installation and low maintenance requirements that helps reduce the total cost of ownership. 

Axiomtek’s IoT gateway solution, the ICO300-MI, comes with the Intel® IoT Gateway Solution, including software stack for manageability, connectivity, and security. The embedded system offers many useful features including the low power consumption Intel® Atom™ CPU, multiple options for wireless connectivity, extended operating temperature for use in rugged environments, and more.

The GOT3217W-881, a human-machine interface (HMI) touch panel PC, can help increase retail operational efficiency. With features including 5-wire resistive or projected capacitive touch screen; high brightness and computing power; rugged IP65 front bezel and IPX1 enclosure to protect against liquid and dust damages, and impressive communications capabilities – this touch panel PC is perfect for a variety of retail, POS and kiosk applications.

Additionally, OEMs and ODMs can integrate Mini-ITX motherboards, i.e., the MANO500 into POS and kiosk systems. These compact single board computers (SBCs) feature high computing performance, extended operating temperature range, and rich I/O and great expansion capabilities. They are well-suited for a variety of retail, and POS-related applications. Our Mini-ITX motherboards are powerful enough to be integrated into systems that can generate holographic images. The Jaws 19 hologram that chomps down on Marty might have been science fiction in “Back to the Future 2” – but can now be a reality with use of modern Mini-ITX motherboards.

Contact us today at or call us at 1-888-GO-AXIOM (1-888-462-9466) to learn more about how our OPS digital signage players, IoT gateway products, embedded motherboards, and touch panel PCs that can support your project needs and shorten time-to-market.


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