Research in Motion (RIM), the company behind Blackberry smartphones, could be entering the digital out-of-home media business. If the filing of two patents for adaptive billboard technology is any indication, then the Warterloo-based company is poised to jump from mobile to digital signage. Given the company’s rapidly declining market share in the smartphone sector, it’s not surprising to see RIM attempting to branch out beyond its core business. I never would have imagined, however, that RIM would look to DOOH to revitalize its history of innovation.
The recently filed patents are for:

The patents focus on the use of GPS sensors in mobile devices to determine the density and speed of crowds as they pass billboards. This information would facilitate the selection of the optimum advertising message to match a group’s profile.

When traffic is moving fast and drivers have no time to pay attention to billboards, or there’s a dense crowd on the street so you are distracted and less likely to pay attention, the billboard may just blast a huge logo and slogan of the advertiser at you, to catch any peripheral attention it can get. When traffic slows down in a jam, and you are sitting bored at the wheel waiting for a car in front to move the next few meters, grateful for any distraction, the same billboard will give you a detailed information about the service, prices, benefits, etc. (via ReadWriteWeb)

The expansion of location-based applications promises more detailed information about the movement of consumers as they navigate their daily lives. With future smartphones to be equipped with RFID and near-field communication tags, geo-tagged consumer data will flow like water from a fire hose. Meshing together different geo-location platforms, and consolidating data across mobile carriers, will give advertisers invaluable insights into how best (where, when, and how) to communicate with consumers.