Narrowcasting

Business Challenge

Many organisations that have embraced Microsoft 365 technology to improve collaboration and productivity don’t fully leverage the capabilities of Modern SharePoint as a central information sharing and publishing platform. 

This is partly caused by lack of knowledge of what SharePoint Modern offers. On the other hand, many organizations still use bespoke Intranet and Narrow Casting solutions leading to all types of integration and development challenges and high(er) TCO.

Our Solution

Our Narrowcasting solution takes the out-of-the-box SharePoint Modern (Communication) Site functionality as a starting point (Page Publishing Approvals; Audience Targeting; translations; web parts, etc.). And adds two specific in-house developed Web Parts

  • Narrowcasting for text and images
  • Narrowcasting for video

These Web Parts provide responsive design to scale the SharePoint Modern Narrowcasting Page to any size or format screen you want to deploy for your Narrowcasting needs.

Since our Narrowcasting Solution uses standard SharePoint Technology, any endpoint that can recover from a power-failure is remotely manageable, uses a chromium-based browser and can be setup to automatically sign-in to SharePoint. For example, are devices running Windows 11 IoT or Raspberry PI can be used to broadcast SharePoint Content to a Narrowcasting Screen.

Using this solution, SharePoint is your single source of content for organizational news both on traditional IT devices such as desktops, laptops, tablets and phones, as well as on large screen narrowcasting setups.

Our Solution supports both Content targeting as well as Location targeting. Both using simple-to-use Azure AD Groups so that content, such as news, can be distributed to specific audiences and / or in specific places.

Narrowcasting Text Web Part

Typically, the distance from a Narrowcasting screen to its viewer is much larger than with a desktop, laptop, phone ore tablet. This imposes requirements on font sizes and limitations on the amount of text that can effectively be shared on a Narrowcasting screen.

As part of the publishing process, and by using SharePoint Metadata, our Narrowcasting Text Web Part determines:

  • If an article is shown on the Intranet as News; in the News Carousel or is a Narrowcasting Article (using content types)
  • To which group of Narrowcasting screens, the message needs to be shown
  • The start- plus end date and time the article should be shown
  • etc.

The Narrowcasting Text Web Part will then, per item, do the following:

  • Show the item as Narrowcasting designated Page to the selected End Points (Narrowcasting devices)
  • Do this for a configurable amount of time
  • In between the configured start and end-time
  • Using Responsive Design to get the best results on the various screens that were selected as the destination

Narrowcasting Video Web Part

Our Narrowcasting Video Web Part has similar functionality as the Text Web part, but then for video files that are supported by SharePoint. In addition, since the default SharePoint Video Web Parts do not allow a video to start loop, it offers looping of a video. 

Easy configuration

The Narrowcasting functionality is, very similar to the SharePoint Modern Functionality, easy to configure since we use:

  • Content Types to designate a SharePoint Modern Page as a Narrowcasting Page
  • Configuration Options in the Eden Akers SharePoint Narrowcasting Web Parts themselves so that any SharePoint author can influence the behavior of the information that is Narrowcasted
  • Usage of Azure Active Directory Groups to target specific content to specifc Narrowcasting Endpoints (Players)

Benefits

  • A single environment for organizational news, both published to end-user devices as well as to Narrowcasting screens
  • Intranet and Narrowcasting out of the box
  • Targeted content casting (specific audience, language, device, etc.)
  • Eden Akers Narrowcasting Web parts only for the Narrowcasting requirements that Microsoft does not support
  • Professional and appealing looking content
  • Easy to configure lay-out
  • Scheduled Content casting from SharePoint Online
  • Support for the Out-of-the-Box SharePoint Online widgets, displaying articles, photos, events/calendar entries, video, RSS feeds or lists available for Narrowcasting
  • Manage permissions to create and cast content
  • Content approval process
  • Quick Time to Market
  • Build on the ever-evolving SharePoint Modern platform
  • Lower TCO (SharePoint Online license is included in Microsoft 365 license)
  • Integration with other Microsoft tools (Power platform, Microsoft Viva, etc.)

Want to know more?

Please contact us for a demonstration on how to use SharePoint Online out-of-the-box as much as possible to support your Narrowcasting requirements

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Help & Support

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