Posted on February 14, 2017 by staff

Blade Runner-style adverts ‘beamed from Shard in a year’


Huge Blade Runner-style digital adverts could be beamed from the UK’s tallest building, the Shard, within a year.

ECHO technology, patented by the London-based Lightvert Ltd, utilises augmented reality and high-speed light scanners to project images from reflective strips, using a phenomenon called the persistence of vision.

This digital out of home (DOOH) advertising technology can be placed up the side of skyscrapers and the world’s tallest buildings to beam 200m tall adverts directly into viewers’ eyes.

Calling ECHO a ‘game-changer’, the firm claim this advertising sector ‘has not seen disruption since the invention of the LED screen’.

The imagery is generated using only a single vertical line of light and as such the image does not exist in reality, but only on the retina of the viewer.

Lightvert has now started a seed funding round, and aims to produce its first commercial units within the next 12 months. On crowdfunding platform Crowdcube, the firm has raised just shy of £150,000, of a target of £670,000.

Eventually, the firm would like to have six ECHO installations per city, with one hyper-scale and five standard scale units within urban area populations over three million.

Early projections would price a premier digital billboard in London’s Piccadilly Circus at £250,000 per month.

Lightvert’s chief executive officer Daniel Siden said: “Using the persistence of vision effect, ECHO hardware has virtually no physical footprint.

“It introduces new audience behaviour and is a powerful opportunity for advertisers and property owners, which could dramatically change the game in terms of capital costs and planning permissions for premium outdoor media.”

Last year, the company received £250k funding from Innovate.

Commenting on the potential of the tech, Simon Dicketts, executive creative director of M&C Saatchi, added: “This is exciting; technology that frees up the mind to new creative possibilities has to be a good thing.”