Panasonic CARES for Virgin Trains projector

How Panasonic monitors and maintains the Virgin Train's projector at London's Euston Station.

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The station is the southern terminus for both London Midland and the West Coast Mainline operated by Virgin Trains and is operational 21 hours each day, from the time the first train arrives at the station from Milton Keynes at 4.34am and the last train departs to the same destination at 1.34am.

For each of those 21 hours, customers at Euston are engaged by a large projection in the main concourse, highlighting Virgin Trains offers, tweets and other marketing messages.

Such extended hours in such an environmentally challenging location, require a comprehensive maintenance programme for the projector.

"We are delighted with how effectively Panasonic works to ensure we are always able to communicate with our customers." 

Panasonic CARES (Customer Assurance through Remote monitoring and Enhanced Service) is a service which connects projectors and displays via our Mobile Virtual Network, helping customers maximise uptime, minimise costly interruptions and stay focused on their professional priorities.

For Virgin Trains, Panasonic monitors the PT-DW17K 17,000 lumen projector at Euston Station remotely from its Monitoring and Repair Centre based in Cardiff.

Using 3G technology alarms and system diagnostics are monitored by Panasonic’s Customer Service team, who then arrange for a service visit by a dedicated Panasonic engineer.

“We can see issues before they occur, and react to them in the fastest manner possible,” said Donald Maidment, Head of Customer Service for Panasonic Business. “Other projection and display manufacturers offer a reactive ‘return to base’ service programme, they can’t offer a predictive service, which is exactly what CARES provides.”

CARES uses Panasonic’s internally developed Early Warning System software (ET-SWA100) which connects to the product via 3G technology and enables Panasonic to perform a diagnostic service on the product from anywhere in the world, and determine what, if any, maintenance is required.

“By monitoring the projectors at Euston Station proactively, we can predict when lamps and filters need to be changed and deploy an engineer to Euston before there is any loss of the projection. For the client, it means completely hassle free use of our products,” added Donald Maidment. “The projector is situated on a roof within the ticket office at Euston Station. This is a particularly challenging environment, due to comparatively high levels of dust and a limited amount of space in which to project. We supplied a special enclosure which provides protection from dust and means the projection is maintained at a precise angle, maximising the image size.  

“In order to affect the perfect service for the customer, we send our engineers in the middle of the night, outside of the operating hours of Virgin Trains, so they do not disturb operations within the ticket office. Our engineers affect a resolution during their down time, enabling Virgin Trains to wake up the following morning to a perfectly working projector.”

Yasmin Sinfield, Senior Advertising Executive at Virgin Trains, said “The service we are provided by the team at Panasonic allows Virgin Trains to concentrate on the really important things, like more destinations and more frequent train services, new ticket buying systems and better ways to access the travel information our customers need.”

“Having said that, we are delighted with the level of attention the projection at Euston gets and how effectively Panasonic works to ensure we are always able to communicate with our customers at our London hub.”

Available in different tiers, the CARES monitoring system connects devices, locations, the cloud platform and remote mobile devices.

"The service provided by the team at Panasonic allows Virgin Trains to concentrate on the really important things"

Each Panasonic device has an external module to enable 3G connectivity, with every unit linked to an account. All accounts can have multiple units connected to it, regardless of location. Installation and set-up is simple and out-of-the-box. The cloud-based remote monitoring platform handles multiple accounts and the cloud architecture allows for easy expansion and high service level agreements.

The contents of the server can be accessed from anywhere, by any mobile device (via a web interface) and alarm notifications can also be received on mobile devices via email. Devices can also be controlled remotely from mobile terminals. 

Panasonic has also developed Smart Climate Cloud, a similar solution designed to control, monitor and manage heating and cooling systems via 3G from any web browser.  

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