Fully managed digital menus with automatic recovery
Itsu is a chain of East Asian-inspired QSRs, founded by Julian Metcalfe, co-founder of sandwich chain Pret a Manger.
Itsu were looking to update their estate with digital menus when they approached Pixel as part of a competitive tender. They asked for our recommended hardware and software architecture, with a view to roll out across their estate of 70+ stores.
The space available in the majority of stores lent itself to a 3x1 landscape menu arrangement. We recommended NEC V series displays due to their excellent thermal management characteristics and overall price-performance. To drive the content across the displays, we specified a triple HD output media player, allowing perfect synchronisation across the whole canvas. To provide failover support, we specified a secondary media player and configured it to automatically poll the primary player. On detection of a problem, the secondary player instructs all of the displays to switch their inputs, providing totally automated recovery.
In addition to the hardware, we configured the content in a manner that provided significant increases in efficiency, coding a vector graphics ITSU butterfly to be able to fly across the displays in a random manner, landing at specific coordinates as defined by the client marketing team, to draw attention to selected menu items. This approach meant that the animated butterfly effect could be overlaid on the menu content, allowing update without needing to re-render and upload new video files.
The network has been in place for over 5 years with full remote and on-site support services at varying SLAs from same-day to next business day, reflecting the flexibility of our managed services. The client has also implemented digital window display totems across a large portion of their estate to increase attention and footfall.