We spoke with the show organisers ahead of ISE 2020 to find out what’s new and what retailers should look out for at the event in Amsterdam.

Tell us more about ISE 2020 and why retailers should visit the show?

At ISE 2019, we had over 81,000 visitors – and we expect even more in 2020. As the largest audiovisual and systems integration show in the world, ISE is the place to find out about the latest technologies and opportunities from the innovators themselves; whether that be hearing real life examples at one of the many conferences on offer, or seeing a demo of a to-be-released technology on manufacturers’ stands.

Retailers should look out for trends in digital signage and experiential technology that will enhance their instore experience for brick and mortar stores, whether that be through what the customer sees directly on display or the technology which influences the management of the business. Delegates can easily find inspiration in each of the six Technology Zones such as Digital Signage and DOOH technology zone (Hall 8) or Education Technology (Hall 13).

In addition, ISE provides access to industry leaders and motivating speakers at the Digital Signage Summit taking place on 12 February at the Hotel Okura, a short walk from the RAI Amsterdam exhibition centre.

A recurring theme throughout the event is likely to be the growing importance of AI and machine learning. On the commercial side, AI – especially in conjunction with sensors such as embedded cameras – is rapidly finding a place in digital signage (a market forecast by AVIXA suggests this to be worth $45 billion by 2024 – roughly 35% larger than 2019) as retailers especially look to try to create more personalised, more engaging and more relevant consumer experiences.

What are the show highlights for 2020?

Two important changes for this year are that the Hall 5 extension has been made larger and permanent, while Hall 14 will be the home of a new Innovation Zone – a specially designed area for companies that are new to ISE to showcase their technology.

The ISE Main Stage theatre will relocate to Hall 14, and will offer a full programme of free-to-attend thought leadership and best practice sessions from ISE, AVIXA, CEDIA and AV Magazine, covering everything from business best practices to employee career development.

Plus, following the success of the spectacular projection mapping on the nhow Hotel during ISE 2019, there will be another exciting projection showcase on another part of the RAI complex. Delivering the Opening Address at ISE will be Duncan Wardle, a former Disney executive with 25 years’ experience in cultivating innovation and creativity for the business. The talk is free-to-attend for ISE visitors.

How has technology changed the way we shop and what can retailers learn about these changes when visiting ISE 2020?

The discussion about the need for bricks and mortar retailers to compete with online shopping by using digital signage to entice consumers into their stores and deliver an improved experience is now pretty much over. The benefits of such technology are now widely accepted, and the use of digital signage is now widespread in the industry.

The industry is moving at a rapid pace, with online retailers continuing to innovate and consumers are becoming more blasé about where they shop. Just as importantly: while digital signage was once seen as a way of redressing the competitive balance between the high street and the web, it has moved on to a second phase where it is also about establishing competitive advantage over other retailers. Utilising a well-executed digital strategy is a great way for retailers to stay ahead of the game.

Are there any conferences at ISE 2020 that retailers attending the event shouldn’t miss?

The Digital Signage Summit has been a regular feature of the show for several years, co-organised by invidis consulting. Florian Rotberg, Chairman of the whole DSS series and invidis consulting Managing Director, brings a wealth of experience in the digital signage industry to the conference.

This conference is a wise half-day investment for updating your corporate and product strategies, and a valuable source of background information enabling you, whether you’re a digital signage supplier or customer, to better understand the trends and drivers of the market. Tickets can be bought on the ISE website, with the conference taking place on the 12 February, 09:00 – 13:00 at the Hotel Okura.

ISE takes place from 11 – 14 February at the RAI convention centre, Amsterdam. Retail Focus readers can register for free attendee passes to the show using this code: 418335.

For more information on the show, and to register, please visit:




Terry Clark
Author: Terry Clark