Using the Vistar Application

This article details how to use Signagelive's Vistar application

Joe Turone avatar
Written by Joe Turone
Updated over a week ago

What is the Vistar app?

Signagelive has an integration with the Vistar Media ad service platform, which allows you to display image and video content directly from Vistar Media onto your Signagelive Players.


How to display Vistar Media content on your Signagelive Players

There are two free apps available from the Signagelive Marketplace that you'll need to download in order to make use of Vistar with Signagelive - the Vistar Caching App and the Vistar Display App. Later in this article we'll detail what each of these apps do, but it's important to note that these apps are designed to be used as a part of a Multizone Layout.

Your Multizone Layout should contain two empty Schedulable Zones that will sit in front of one another, the Vistar Display App will sit in its own Playlist on top and behind this will sit the Caching App in its own Playlist also. See below for a more visual representation of how this will appear:

Screen Recording 2024-05-02 at 11.15.11.26 AM

You will then assign a unique Playlist (one containing the Caching App and one containing the Display App) to each empty Schedulable Zone during step 2 of the Publishing stage. The Display App must be on the top Layer in the Layer Navigator.

Please Note

To be able to use the Vistar application within Signagelive you will need a Vistar account to be able to proceed. Further information on Vistar can be found here.


Which Signagelive Players support the use of the Vistar Apps?

Any Signagelive Players that support the Widget SDK method can make use of the Vistar Apps - at present this includes BrightSign, Samsung Tizen, LG webOS, ChromeOS and Windows (note: this does not include the Legacy PC client).

Of the above-mentioned supported Players, all can serve images and videos (H.264 only) with no audio, however LG webOS 1.0, LG webOS 2.0 and Samsung Tizen 2.4 players can only serve images at this stage due to hardware and software restrictions:

Vistar_Matrix.jpg

Please Note

The minimum recommended firmware version for Brightsign players is 8.2.72. Please check our BrightSign Tips and Tricks page for instructions on upgrading the firmware.


What does each Vistar App do?

As previously mentioned, there are two components that make up the configuration of displaying Vistar content on your Signagelive Players:

  • Vistar Display App - an app that queries Vistar for an available ad slot and then plays the correct ad for that slot using the cached assets.

  • Vistar Caching App - an app that syncs and does all the asset caching.

Vistar Caching App

This app syncs with the Vistar Platform to dynamically retrieve all valid ads every hour and then cache them to storage. This app will need to run with the contents stored to the cache before starting ad playback; and this then therefore allows seamless transitions on supported media players. The app caches any valid assets for the next 30 hour period.

In Signagelive, the Vistar Caching App needs the following preferences:

  • Network ID - this is determined by your Vistar Media account

  • API ID - this is determined by your Vistar Media account

  • Venue ID - this is determined by your Vistar Media Orders and Venues currently setup

These properties can be set by double clicking the Vistar Caching App on your playlist in Signagelive, then clicking the Properties tab. The Venue ID can also be referenced on the media player as reference code 2. To do so open the player details, click on the Player Site and Contact Details tab, enter the Venue ID on the Reference 2 field and save the details.

Vistar Display App

This handles the visual side of displaying the retrieved ad (video or image) and sending the proof of play or expiry callback depending on whether it has succeeded or failed.


Preparing the Vistar Apps for Publication

You'll first need two unique Playlists, each containing one of the apps:

  1. Head to the Signagelive Marketplace and add the Vistar Caching App and the Vistar Display App to your Signagelive Network

  2. Now you'll want to create two Playlists, each containing one of the apps (create one Playlist for the Caching App and a separate one for the Display App)

  3. Ensure the duration of each asset is identical in each Playlist

With your Playlists created, you'll now need a Layout with two empty Schedulable Zones as we showed you earlier in this article. For more information on publishing Layouts with Schedulable Zones, please see this article.

Please Note

Please ensure the Caching App has a suitable asset duration that allows enough time for ad media to download and store on the Player (this should be the same as or longer than the duration of the Display App). If the Display App attempts to play an ad that is not cached, it will send an Expiry Response to Vistar’s API. In this situation, the Caching app will need to be run again. Additionally, the Display App will move on to the next asset in the Playlist if it does not have a valid asset to play. In instances where no media has been retrieved by the Caching App, the Display App will display a black screen.

Upon publishing your Layout with your two Playlists containing your Vistar Apps assigned to each Schedulable Zone, your Vistar ads should begin populating and displaying on your Signagelive Players.

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