Philadelphia’s RiverRink at Penn’s Landing, an Olympic-size skating rink used as the site of a pop-up winter garden that hosts the city’s celebration of the winter and holiday season, recently became the first U.S. venue to install Powersoft’s Deva new messaging system, designed to help cities embrace “smart city” applications.
Installed by Maryland-based integration firm Live Sound Co., the Powersoft Deva system is comprised of four Deva units mounted on two steel poles on opposite sides of the skating rink. A fifth Deva unit is mounted on a pole and pointed towards the entrance of the rink. Each unit, which measures approximately 12in.x18in. and weighs just under 22lbs., comprises an active loudspeaker, an interactive messaging system, a high-powered LED lighting, an FM tuner, built-in GPS, presence sensors, Wi-Fi, and many other intelligent features.
“As far as I know, there is no other product on the market that combines such a compelling feature set,” says Live Sound Co. Chief Operating Officer Nik Mondo. “The icing on the cake is that they can be solar powered and have a built-in battery, so they don’t require external power sources. This means that you don’t have to worry about the typical power restrictions that might be faced in other scenarios with other competing products on the marketplace.”
The Deva system delivers up to 115dBs of pristine audio while consuming a diminutive physical footprint and remaining completely energy independent. Two of the Deva units are programmed to take photos of skaters at regular intervals, and after the rink closes, the system, which is controlled over a wireless LAN, is able to provide intelligent surveillance and active monitoring of the premises.
While the RiverRink installation was initially set up as a “proof of concept” to demonstrate Deva’s features and functionality, Mondo, who hails from Philadelphia is confident that the council will soon find other “smart city” applications for the unit.
“I would like to see Deva installed alongside the trails along the Delaware River, all the way to South Philadelphia,” Mondo says. “Such a system could provide messaging and an added measure of assurance and security for pedestrians, especially in areas where there is not a lot of lighting or public infrastructure.”