We had this installed last year. I think we paid £5k for a ~26" LCD and for it to be projected in hall. Very expensive I thought and couldn't talk the head out of getting even though the salesman was pretty poor. I am not too sure how long the agreement is (I think it's three years) or how much it is per year.
The loop gets quite annoying, but you do have the option of putting your own content up and downloading extra videos from their site which makes it seem less repetitive. I haven't bothered getting involved with it as I have left in the hands of the teachers, but it seems they are fed up with updating it as there is still frosty the snowman playing over photographs of the kids building snowmen.
It would probably be better to use some old PC and get the kids to create some content. Downloading videos from various resources could be done but I don't know about that due to copyright etc.
How much locally produced content can you insert into the life channel content? Can the playlist contain as much or as little of your own content as you want or is there a limit of 50% or something imposed?
Originally Posted by Pottsey
We already have 3 screens here that we run powerpoint content on. Only just put up the last 2 in reception entrance!!!! Now the SLT want the life channel. They have got to want it in reception area needing to pull down my work. GRRR. Again no joined up thinking from manglement!!!
We no longer use life Channel. As we mostly used our own videos I figured running VLC on an old PC would be a more cost effective solution.
Originally Posted by Alis_Klar
I would estimate we ran 95% our content, 5% them. There is a limit but it’s not that bad, at the end of your play list one of life channels videos plays but you can make your playlist as long as you like and have more than 1 playlist. We had two playlist each around 7 hours and randomised. 1 random life channel video played between playlists and a few selected life videos within the playlist.
We had this until our new build was finished. It always seemed to be a bit flaky, and I was never very impressed with the content. I must say the kids weren't that impressed either, and after the first few days just ignored it. We had 4 screens in the dining hall reception and library. It seemed an expensive gimmick to me and there are far better things to spend the money on.
Since our new building went up we have had a new digital signage system and we just junked the Life Channel box, re-used the screens for the new system, and no-one has missed it, except the DH who insisted we buy it originally, who eventually got me contact them. I said to them if they could get it all working on our network without messing up our switch configs or running any cables (can't just lift the ceiling tiles, all has to be firewalled and certified) they were welcome to try. Guy came in, looked at our building, said he would get back to us, and we have heard nothing since.
Waste of money! the content is dull and boring and they only change it once a month, the price is rediculous for what it is install xibo and make your own content.
So you now own the hardware? I thought i was on lease or something? Was the cost of hardware detailed on the invoice or was it subsidised by the subscription? What screens do they use? Did you then connect your own PC's to the screens or is there some intelligence in the screen that has an ethernet port?
Originally Posted by Linfit
we supplied our own screens and they supplied some cheap small factor dells running XP and the life channel software
We had it, but did not renew, not all of the content changed each month, and some videos were on for 3 or 4 months, also it was great that they started to add the Teachers' TV content, but it doesn't have subtitles, which wasn't very useful on the screen in Reception that always has the sound off.
Alis_Klar, they put in a small server - actually a rather underspec Dell workstation, and some screens when it was first fitted.
Our building was demolished - the screens we re-used, the computer wasn't any use for anything so we junked it. There was never any suggestion
that the hardware was not ours.
The system we had there was no intelligence in the screens - they were bog standard TV's with point to point VGA using
signal boosters. I don't think this is the only way they do it though, as when they came to look at our new building, as I mentioned previously, they were talking about video over Cat 5, although they also talked about
a system with a small PC at the screen end, so they may use a variety of different approaches.