Piccadilly Circus' Advertising Icon Reborn

Offering a chance to debate between 'invasive advertising' as a whole or recognising a great technological feat, which side of the fence will you be on? Piccadilly Circus of London (UK) is essentially known as Britain's Times Square and as you may have recently noticed on your recent travels around the capital, Landsec's and Ocean Outdoor's new Piccadilly Lights are shining brighter than ever after almost a year of darkness. Upgraded to a single 783.5sqm larger than 4K LED Screen, Piccadilly Lights is now officially the largest TV in Europe, and with its switch-on viewed by over 12m people across the planet, it is estimated that the advertising space will be seen by over 100,000,000 people every year. Beyond it's upgraded placement configurations and seamless viewing, there is but a further twist up its sleeve.

Introducing recognition technology to display targeted advertisements based on the composition of passing cars, people (dogs and pigeons?), the oversized, ever-bright Piccadilly Lights billboards can actively calculate the gender and age of its immediate viewers. Wrapping around the facade in a domineering fashion, the new billboard is taking things to the next level and now features concealed built-in cameras to accurately deliver the correct ads at the correct time in as personalised manner as it possibly can. Able to adapt to its local audience, the most relevant of its six-exclusive brands will feature when their target audience is most widely served at the popular tourist attraction.

Using an algorithm to understand visual cues, is the billboard's ability to recognise the composition of local demographics invasive, or highly innovative? Equally offering free wi-fi for passerbys to interact with the displayed brands, the new technology can even respond to changes in the weather, news and social media updates, displaying tailored versions of the adverts depending on the real-time situation. Is it raining, oh, that car's wipers are working; is it bright sunshine, oh, that model is wearing sunglasses. Do you have a strong opinion on such advertising characteristics? You do have to appreciate it's quite a technological marvel though... Discover more about the advertising project online at: OceanOutdoor.com

Photography credit : Ocean Outdoor
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