friendlyway's Embedded Functions
Friendlyway has equipped their d-sign infotainment monitors – with screen diagonals up to 40” – with the most up-to-date PC functionalities available, including touch screen. The PC systems have a very flat construction, with depths from 5 cm to 10 cm, and are designed for long-term availability, based on ETX computer-on modules from Kontron. The system integration is implemented by ies Industrie-Elektronik Schmitz.
Special software solutions are available ready-made for a wide variety of uses and are included free in the system delivery. Friendlyway has already developed special industry solutions for hotels, schools, hospitals, cities and communities, research institutes, banks, insurance companies, restaurants, airports, gas stations, trade shows, shopping centres, museums, and car dealership and rental agencies.
Extra care was taken during the design stages of the d-sign line to ensure that the depth of the system never exceeded 10 cm. Friendlyway and the custom design specialists who were commissioned for the implementation decided to use computer on-modules based on Kontron’s open ETX standard, which offers long-term availability and has already proven itself in many tough environmental conditions, such as medical, automobile and helicopter technology.
ETX modules, which friendlyway employs, have a standardised, extremely compact form factor (95 cm x 114 cm) that offers the user identical mechanical dimensions, the same placement of mounting holes and a uniform thermal interface to the system housing. Most importantly, all electrical signals are guided to the carrier board using the same socket layout and voltage level. Additional performance upgrades are possible. Interestingly, the Pentium M processor’s performance is comparable to that of a 2.3 GHz Pentium 4 processor, but generates significantly less heat and can therefore be operated without a fan, which is particularly significant for the d-sign 40.
Another advantage of using COMs is the ability to easily adapt the base circuit board to any new requirements without having to commission a completely new board design. The use of COMs also allows users to employ proven systems with higher functionality as building blocks, and so concentrate fully on their core competence. COMs simplify product maintenance by reducing the parts list from several hundred individual components to just one element. Cancellations of non essential components do not require additional redesigns on the computer module, because Kontron guarantees a minimum five years form-fit function on its COMs.
The friendlyway d-sign 40 LCD monitor has been used by the British navy since September 2005. It is used for public relations work on board ship and is meant to inform interested 'landlubbers' about the navy's missions. The large, elegant 40 inch designer display is particularly well-suited for use by the navy, primarily because of the fanless high-performance PC integrated into the housing and the very robust aluminium housing.