Opticians store wows customers with mirrored point of sale system that encourages online social interaction

A trailblazing, touch-enabled and connected point of sale unit located at the London flagship store of fashionable high street optician Kite GB uses a 42-inch diagonal Zytronic touch sensor integrated into a toughened mirror, allowing customers to take photos of themselves wearing different frames, then post them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms – so that their friends and family can look at the chosen frames and give their opinions.

There is increasing interest in putting touchscreen functionality into reflective surfaces. This is seeing significant uptake in both domestic and retail sectors, and the Kite GB project was implemented through Zytronic integration partner Display Technology.

Display Technology provides digital signage solutions, TFT monitors as well as the corresponding components. The company also supplies individual hardware and software solutions for digital signage applications. It supports its customers through all project phases, starting with the construction of the metal housing through the worldwide procurement of parts and the modification of its in-house developed boards to touch integration.

 Display Technology

As AsadHamir, Kite GB’ CEO, explains

“The vast majority of dispensing opticians haven’t considered how technology can help them engage with their customers. We really wanted to enhance the user experience and provide an environment that is conducive to social sharing.”

“The unitis already proving very popular and is a great differentiator for Kite,” he continues. “It allows customers to get advice on the products they are thinking about purchasing from the people that matter most to them, not just the store staff.”

“The two-phase mirror function is extremely advantageous for the Kite unit. It gives it the appearance of an elegant silver mirror when the monitor is not lit, consistent with the stylish decor of the store. It then becomes instantly transparent when the monitor is activated, so that an intuitive touchscreen interface materialises,” adds Ian Crosby, Zytronic’s Sales & Marketing Director. “PCT is fast becoming the sensor solution of choice for those looking to integrate touchscreens touch sensing across large mirrored surfaces. Its combination of strong touch performance and unmatched operational longevity, along with provision for multi-touch operation, make it very compelling.”

In addition to the Zytronic PCT sensor, the system consists of an ultra-thin LCD digital signage monitor, supplied byDisplay Technology, with high brightness output, 1920×1080 pixel resolution and wide viewing angle. Moreover, the Logitech HD Pro C920 web camera provides high resolution photos and video that can be stored on the host PC, then manipulated and subsequently uploaded.The customized software facilitates social interaction and the sharing of content with others.

Zytronic’sProjected Capacitative Touch (PCT™) touch sensors rely on a matrix of 10µm thick copper capacitors, in an XY configuration, embedded inside a laminated substrate. This protects the sensor matrix from sources of damage, such as scratches, impacts, extreme temperatures and exposure to harsh chemicals that often compromise the lifespan of touch sensors based on resistive and surface capacitive technologies. Likewise, in contrast to infrared (IR), optical and surface acoustic wave (SAW) technologies, PCT negates the need for a bezel in which to accommodate sensors/emitters, so that sleek, attractive, smooth-fronted designs can be realized. This is particularly in keeping with the aesthetic demands of the Kite project.

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