Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Thursday, August 20, 2021

Who knew that dead trees could support live video? Demonstrating that print magazines can still be innovative advertising vehicles in the digital era, some editions of the upcoming September 18th issue of Entertainment Weekly will include a no-foolin’ ultra-flat screen video player.

The technology for the battery-powered ads was manufactured by a Los Angeles-based company called Americhip, and each ad can handle about 40 minutes of video.

Here are some more details about the Americhip technology: the screen, which is 2.7 millimeters thick, has a 320×240 resolution. The battery lasts for about 65 to 70 minutes, and can be recharged, believe it or not, with a mini USB cord-there’s a jack on the back of it. The screen, which uses thin film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT LCD) technology, is enforced by protective polycarbonate. It’s a product that has been in development at Americhip for about two years, spokesman Tim Clegg told CNET News via e-mail.

Wild stuff, especially the mini-USB rechargability. That’s the kind of thing that could have made Esquire’s 75th anniversary e-ink cover a little more impactful; as it is, once the juice ran out, there was no reason to keep playing with it.

I suppose the next generation of these print-video ads will update with refreshed content, either wirelessly or via that USB connection to an online-enabled computer. Although how much capability can you pack into the pages of a magazine, and expect the readers to come back to again and again? Periodicals are inherently disposable media — it’s rare that an average reader dips into back issues. And of course, e-readers and the regular ol’ Internet compete for that sort of dynamic content.

The limited video-embedded issues of EW will be available only to subscribers in New York and Los Angeles — newsstands and the rest of the country miss out. That includes me. Hopefully I can hunt down some nearby subscriber’s copy, just to play with it. Frankly, I’m not that interested in taking in the sure-to-be lame-o CBS sitcom previews or the Pepsi Max ads. Still, I’m a sucker for techie gimmicks.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 08/20/2009 11:42am
Category: Advert./Mktg., Publishing, Tech
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