How iPad is making it easier for DFS customers to find their perfect sofa

How iPad is making it easier for DFS customers to find their perfect sofa

As the UK’s leading furniture and upholstery brand, DFS are always looking for ways to move their business forward and deliver a better customer experience. They built a 3D augmented reality app that would help customers find their perfect sofa, either in store or at home, and then used a group of staff champions to ensure it was a success on the shop floor.

“The main thing we wanted to try to achieve was making the experience of buying a sofa easier for our customers,” explained Russell Harte, DFS’s head of multichannel development and delivery. “We developed our app to do that, and we focused that primarily on Apple devices because iPad is something our customers are very aware of from a brand recognition point of view.”

The decision to keep the app on iOS was also due to the second half of DFS’s app campaign: at the same time that the app appeared on the App Store, it would be rolled out as a sales tool to 100 of their branches across the UK. Salespeople could then use the app with the customers to help them make a more informed purchase. “Our store guys all intuitively knew how to use iPad, whether they’d got their own or not,” said Russell. “There is something about iPad which means that people can use it without any significant training.”

DFS' room planner iPad app

Finding staff champions for the new app

The DFS app allows customers to create a 3D model of their room, complete with windows, doors and stairs, then position DFS’s sofas and chairs in the space to see which is the best fit.

“DFS’s app is a great example of how mobile devices can make decision-making fun,” says Martin Wright, Jigsaw24’s iOS developer. “It brilliantly combines 3D models with your camera, letting you turn your living room into a showroom and inviting you to explore more options before buying, so customers get a better idea of everything DFS has to offer.”

In order to prepare for the rollout (and check that the app was suitable for use in store), DFS’s senior team chose nine stores around the country to receive in-depth training on the app. Managers from those stores would then go to other branches in their region and act as champions, explaining how the app worked.

“We visited those store managers individually, and then over a period of weeks they got to understand when was best to use it with a customer, at what point in the conversation to use it, [how to gauge] whether it really helped or whether it just made the choice too much,” explained Russell. “They passed on that expertise to other store colleagues in their regions, and that’s how we rolled iPad and the app out.”

Having champions on the sales floor also helped to reduce internal resistance to this new idea, and iron out any kinks in the app before it hit the App Store. “They fed back a lot of things to change, so we took that on board before we launched it to customers and the rest of the estate,” said Russell. “In the room planner aspect, we got a lot of requests for doors that showed the opening arc, because a lot of furniture ends up having to fit behind a door. And then there were bits of feedback about usability – about moving the furniture around and how we displayed information and prices.”

DFS' room planner app

Preparing for an Apple rollout

Although they are primarily PC-based, DFS already had a management system in place for staff iPhones and their small contingent of Mac users, so “in terms of infrastructure we were ready for iPad, but process-wise we still had a bit to learn.” Russell’s main concerns have been around ensuring that updates to the app appear seamless to end users, and that the size of the updates doesn’t overtax the company network. However, the update process is so smooth that the company are now rolling out extra iPad devices in some stores and recently they’ve been given to senior managers to make working easier when they’re on the road.

Gauging the customer response

DFS’s app has been doing incredibly well on the App Store, with over 120,000 download and a 3.5 star rating. It’s faring well in store, too. “From a purely anecdotal point of view, when you sit in a store and watch a customer interaction, the app leads to really, really good conversations,” said Russell. “This is a purchase that is reasonably expensive for most people, and it’s a fairly infrequent purchase as well, so trying to make sure you get absolutely the right one is very important. If you ask the store staff, particularly the ones who use iPad a lot, they will say that it allows them to have better customer conversations around the products.”

DFS' room planner app

Choosing an Apple partner to move forward

“We already had an existing relationship with Jigsaw24, so we originally approached them to see whether we could get hold of iPad and other Apple devices [for the rollout],” Russell explained.

“Working with them was all very straightforward, pricing was competitive, and delivery was on time and in full, so it was all very easy for us, and that’s all you can hope for when you’re trying to get hardware out there quickly. Jigsaw24 do what they say they’re going to do, they’re very straightforward, and they allow you to get on with running your business and moving it forward, which is what you really want to be focusing on.”

The company’s next project? Building Mac-powered kiosks that will let customers interact with a larger touchscreen, and other digital signage to access marketing content that’s created at head office and distributed and scheduled in the cloud. “Everybody’s keen that, as the market leader in the UK upholstery market, we continue to develop things that keep us in that position and move the market forward. If you want a device that’s intuitive to use, has got high brand awareness and needs minimal training, iPad works really well.”

Want to know more about how iPad can support your sales team? Get in touch on 03332 409 305 or email For all the latest news and recommendations, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Adobe extend Creative Cloud for teams price lock

Adobe extend Creative Cloud for teams price lock

Just when we thought we’d done all the over-excited flailing about Creative Cloud for teams that we’d ever have to do, Adobe go ahead and announce another ace pricing deal.

Your price locked purchase now includes two annual renewals, so if you sign up to Creative Cloud for teams before 30th November 2013, you’ll only have to pay £362 ex VAT per head per year for the first three years. Let that sink in for a second: all the Creative apps, whenever you need them, wherever you need them, for less than a pound a day for three glorious, productive years.

You can join us in our flailing now.

The small print

This offer is available to everyone on Creative Suite 3 or higher who moves to Creative Cloud for teams before November 30th, and for any existing Creative Cloud for teams customers who purchase additional seats (your new seats will be charged at the reduced rate for three years, but you’ll still have to pay whatever price you’ve agreed for your existing seats).

This offer is only available through Adobe Platinum Partners (Jigsaw24, for example). You can get your Adobe Creative Cloud for teams seats here, and we have more info about the features you’ll find in CCft here, in case you’re yet to realise why we love it so.

To find out more about Adobe’s price lock offer, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Magma Roben-3 expansion specs revealed at Createasphere

Magma Roben-3 expansion specs revealed at Createasphere

Magma will be dropping by Burbank’s annual Createasphere Entertainment Technology Expo today to reveal the specs of their Roben-3 Thunderbolt expansion chassis, the ‘ultimate sidekick for the creative professional.’

Magma Roben 3 expansion chassis

As well as giving you the complete spec list, Magma will be teaming up with Lunaforge to demo the Roben-3 as part of a fully functional 4K workflow. (For those of us who aren’t in Burbank, a similar demo from SMPTE is archived on YouTube.)

Roben-3 is set to start shipping in the next few days, so we’re excited to see what must be a pretty final model in action. We know that Roben-3 will have three slots available for PCIe expansion (the clue is in the name) and a high speed backplane, and Magma tell us that it’s got room for up to eight hot-pluggable 2.5″ SSDs, or SAS or SATA hard drives. Though Roben-3 is currently a Thunderbolt device, you’ll be given the option of 20Gbps Thunderbolt 2 connectivity once that’s rolled out by Intel and Apple.

One of Roben-3’s more intriguing features is the ability to host a Mac mini within the chassis itself, giving you an integrated rack mount server with direct access to your expansion slots via Thunderbolt. (It also comes with iLok casing, if you’re worried about someone running off with your kit.)

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

DaVinci Resolve 10 is out of beta!

DaVinci Resolve 10 is out of beta!

Blackmagic Design have announced that the latest version of DaVinci Resolve is officially out of beta and available from their support site as a free download now.

Blackmagic Design DaVinci Resolve 10

Available on Windows, Linux and OS X, DaVinci Resolve 10 has been in beta since NAB, and key improvements so far include a faster, easier to use interface, continuing improvement of the dailies workflow (including audio and video sync by timecode) and support for an unlimited number of OpenFX plug-ins per clip.

You can find out more about DaVinci Resolve 10 (and learn how to build your ideal workstation) on our site. Before you work yourself into an update-downloading frenzy, we’re just going to repeat our usual points about finishing ongoing projects, backing everything up, taking the time to read the read me (the clue is in the name) and making sure you keep the manual on hand. Although of course you do all those things already.

If you’re already up and running, feel free to drop us a comment and let us know how you’re getting on!

Want to know more about DaVinci Resolve 10? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Canon release new 4K display and C100 upgrade

Canon release new 4K display and C100 upgrade

Two big stories from the Canon camp today: the release of a new 4K display and a paid firmware upgrade for the C100. Details about the display – memorably named the DP-V3010 – are still thin on the ground, but based on what’s currently available, we’re advising C500 users to get excited. 

Canon’s DP-V3010 display

Canon's new 4K display, the DP-V3010

This 4K UHD display weighs in at 4096 x 2560 pixels, and boasts a DCI-compliant contrast ratio of 2000:1. The panel itself is 10-bit and processing is done in at least 12-bit – we believe the firmware is still being finalised and actually expect the final number to be higher. Canon certainly seem to think it’s going to be the dog’s proverbials, telling us: “The Canon DP-V3010 4K Reference Display is designed to support image quality reviewing of 4K digital cinema or 4K UHD program material during all phases of origination and post-production. Outstanding picture sharpness, high dynamic range, and a wide DCI compliant colour gamut facilitate exacting evaluation of this content.

“Uniform brightness across the entire screen, a DCI compliant contrast ratio of 2000:1, and exceptionally wide angle viewing supports collaborative creativity among a number of viewers. The display has a 16:10 aspect ratio and 4096 x 2560 pixels in a 10-bit panel supported by a powerful high bit depth image processing engine. The 30-inch display is only 7.4-inches deep and has convenient carrying handles that allow easy transportation on location, in the studio, or in a post-production suite. Applications of the reference display include on-set image evaluation, on-location “video villages”, editorial, color grading, computer generated imaging (CGI), visual effects and animation.”

With eight 3G-SDI inputs, this is obviously an ideal accessory for anyone on a C500 workflow, as you can plug in your Ki Pro Quad to review footage in full 4K. The full list of inputs and outputs includes:
Input 3G/HD-SDI 8 (2 systems) BNC (75Ω) receptacle terminals
DisplayPort 4 (1 system, version 1.1a compliant)
Output 3G/HD-SDI 8 (2 pass-thru systems)
Control USB 1 (revision 2.0 compliant High Speed mode compatible) USB A receptacle port
LAN 1 RJ-45 terminal

While we don’t have pricing yet, we can tell you that the DP-V3010 is due to hit shelves in March next year.

Paid upgrade for Canon C100 users

If you can’t wait til March to update your Canon setup, you can always update your C100 in February, when a paid firmware upgrade becomes available. Costing £339 ex VAT, the upgrade enables dual pixel autofocus (DAF) with 103 different lenses and speeds up one-shot autofocus speed and accuracy – this is the same technology as is used in the 70D, so check out its autofocus if you want an idea of what you’re getting.

To get the upgrade, you have to make an appointment with Canon’s Regional Competence Centre in Elstree, who are the only ones carrying out the work. You can reach them on 0844 369 0100.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.



Apple in the public sector: How secure is iPad?

Apple in the public sector: How secure is iPad?

iPad was the first tablet to introduce 256-bit encryption, and includes four levels of security. Protection at device, network, data and platform level mean that iOS is now one of the securest platforms available. Testament to its security, iPad and iPhone been given clearance for Impact level 3 work by CESG, meaning it can be used for restricted work.

iOS is designed to secure the contents of your iPad and iPhone from the moment you turn it on

As with the Mac, Apple make both the hardware and the software. On a hardware level, features such as app sandboxing, ASLR and the 256-bit encryption engine help protect against malware and viruses, whereas tools within iOS further secure data and personal information.

Within the operating system, apps requesting information or data from Calendar, Contacts, Reminders and Photos will ask for your permission in order for them to proceed. Support for a passcode means that you can prevent unauthorised access to the device, and it can even be set up so that too many failed attempts results in data on the device being deleted.

iOS is also completely compatible with a range of mobile device management solutions. While Apple Configurator will allow you to deploy profiles and the Find my iPhone functionality lets you locate and wipe lost devices, with MDM, you can ensure that all devices have encryption turned on, can monitor usage and restrict access to different apps. It’s also possible to partially wipe only information rather than the entire contents.

Steps for ensuring that data is encrypted

In light of a number of high profile cases where organisations have been fined for data being lost through device theft, it’s more important than ever to ensure that you can guarantee that all sensitive information on devices is secure and encrypted.

If devices are enrolled in a management solution, such as Casper Suite or Absolute Manage, then IT teams have complete control. Should the device go missing, it can be completely wiped of sensitive information. In addition, if the device is enrolled in a backup solution like Code42 CrashPlan PROe, the user can have profiles, preferences and data remotely reinstalled on a new device.

1. Get a management solution whichever you choose, it’s important to enrol devices (computers, tablets and phones) into a solution that includes remote wipe functionality.

2. Within the management solution, IT can run a report on all devices in the environment that don’t have data encryption.

3. Remotely inform users that they should have disc encryption enabled.

Your iPad security feature checklist
  • Secure Boot Chain.
  • App sandboxing.
  • DFU mode.
  • Address Space Layout Randomisation.
  • File and Keychain data protection.
  • Encrypted iTunes backup.
  • Support for encrypted email and S/MIME.
  • Configuration enforcement.
  • Remote wipe.


Want to know more about how iPad can improve your IT security? Give our team a call on 03332 409 306 or email To keep up with all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Apple in the public sector: Does Mac provide a secure platform?

Apple in the public sector: Does Mac provide a secure platform?

Apple security has been an area of debate for years. One camp typically consider iOS to be secure, and for many years OS X was said to be virtually virus free; the other are sceptical of both platforms and believe that they don’t offer the level of protection needed to deal with sensitive data. Well, both groups are wrong. Macs may not be completely virus free, but Apple have worked hard to ensure that they’re ahead of the competition.

One of the Mac’s biggest benefits lies in its unified approach to security. Because Apple design both the hardware and the operating system, the entire machine works to secure the contents from threats and provide the very best security possible – from 128-bit encryption to a useful feature called Find My iPhone, which lets you use a web portal to locate lost Macs and iOS devices.

Application security

When downloading apps, OS X has a tool called Gatekeeper built into it, which protects you from downloading unsafe apps to the hard drive. Gatekeeper works by recognising whether or not your apps have been created by a developer with an Apple Developer ID. If it can’t find one, then the app won’t be allowed on the system, unless you want it to.

Then, once the app is on the machine, sandboxing takes place. Each app is isolated from critical system components, data and other apps, so that information can’t be shared between them – again, unless you want it to. If the app is compromised, sandboxing automatically blocks it.

Isolation of apps is a good example of the OS and hardware working together. Within the machine, an XD (execute disable) feature and Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) function build a strong wall between data and memory that prevents malware compromising the system and randomly changing the memory location of apps, making them hard to target.

File and data security

Compromisation of secure data on computers is costly. That’s why Macs have a built-in tool call FileVault 2, which ensures that your data is secure and that the contents of your machine (and removable drives) are protected by XTSAES 128 encryption.

For files not already on your drive, OS X takes a similar approach to the one it has for apps. When files are downloaded from Safari, Mail and Messages, they are screened for disruptive content. For extra protection, the first time you go to open them, you receive an alert warning that it is a newly downloaded file.

Finally, antiphishing tools within Safari will protect you from online attacks if thieves try to acquire sensitive information. If you try to access a suspect site, it will alert you rather than taking you straight there.

Your Mac security feature checklist

• Gatekeeper app protection.
• App sandboxing.
• Execute disable feature.
• Address Space Layout Randomisation.
• Automatic updates.
• Antiphising.
• XTS-AES 128 encryption.
• Strong pass codes.
• Find my iPhone feature.

Want to know more about how Macs can improve your IT security? Give our team a call on 03332 409 306 or email To keep up with all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Adobe give video pros a Halloween treat by updating After Effects and Premiere Pro

Adobe give video pros a Halloween treat by updating After Effects and Premiere Pro

Adobe chose treats over tricks yesterday, dropping updates to Premiere Pro CC and After Effects CC. There’s a new Direct Link between Premiere Pro CC and SpeedGrade CC, simplifying your colour correction workflow, and a new Mask Tracker in Premiere Pro.

We could waste precious words telling you about how these are going to speed up your video workflow, but it’s a Friday, so instead we’re going to kick back and let Adobe explain this to you in their excellent overview videos. Oh, and they’ve just released a nice round up of all their October video updates, if you want to make sure you’re not missing anything.

Premiere Pro CC: A simpler color workflow with Direct Link

After Effects CC: Introducing Mask Tracker


If you’d like to see the latest Creative Cloud features in action, head over to our events page and register for our Creative Cloud for video webinar, which is coming up on 12th November. Adobe’s Neils Stevens will be showcasing the newest additions to the workflow and answering your questions, so be sure to drop by.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.


Tech we love: Futureproof 4K with the FS700 and Odyssey 7Q

Tech we love: Futureproof 4K with the FS700 and Odyssey 7Q

If Mac Pro has got you considering your future 4K workflow, one of the first combinations we’d recommend is the Sony FS700 and the Odyssey Q7 OLED monitor/recorder. The Odyssey requires a paid firmware upgrade to shoot anything other than compressed 10-bit, but once it’s unlocked you can record in HD RAW, HFR or 4K as needed. Here’s what you need to know.

What’s the Odyssey 7Q?

Odyssey 7Q recorder

It’s the latest recorder from Convergent Design, the bright sparks behind the Gemini 4:4:4 and the nanoFlash. In its simplest form, it’s a 7.7″ OLED monitor with a 3400:1 contrast ratio and the option for iOS/Android-based remote control, which would have been enough to garner our attention on its own. However, the Odyssey 7Q also lets you record DNxHD 8 or 10-­bit  YCC to 1080p, 60/60i,  720p, 60 (.mov, .mxf) – it’s an OLED monitor and a recorder. But there’s more…

When you’re ready to move up to 2K, 4K, HFR or Canon, Sony or ARRI’s various RAW formats, you can simply buy a firmware update from Convergent Design to unlock the format you need. And if you’re only going to need it once, or only for a few days, you can save yourself a few pennies by renting it from them on a day-by-day basis, so you’re only ever paying for the option that you’re using. If you’re not going to ultra high resolution just yet, you can still buy in recording options for 10-bit compressed 1080p YCC 4:2:2 at up to 120fps, 12-bit compressed 1080p RGB 4:4:4 at up to 60fps and uncompressed 10 or 12-bit 1080p RGB 4:4:4 at 60fps.

And that Q? Stands for quad, and means it can handle four incoming video streams at once – again, this is a modular paid upgrade.

So, understandably, we’re keen for you to pair this tiny box of scalable goodness up with your FS700 as soon as humanly possible.

Why choose the FS700?

Sony's 4K-capable FS700 camcorder

As HD-cameras-that-can-do-4K-with-an-add-on go, the FS700 is one of the most scalable, flexible and cost-effective. Even when you factor in the €500 fee some early adopters will have to shell out to upgrade theirs to 4K, it still comes in at roughly a third of the price of Canon’s C500, which is incredibly good value for a Super 35mm HD camera.

Then there’s the fact that it’s got a simple, scalable workflow that you can learn once and then apply to footage anywhere on the scale from compressed HD to 4K RAW, including your HFR clips. And you can use that workflow to capture uncompressed footage at up to 120fps, so you have plenty of creative freedom when it comes to how you shoot.

Finally, while we love the Blackmagic Design’s 4K Production Camera, it a) isn’t here yet b) doesn’t come with a support contract (the FS700 can be covered with Sony Prime Support) and c) uses EF mount lenses as opposed to the FS700’s E mount, so gives you fewer options when it comes to using interesting glass. All of which means that, if you’re looking for something to act as your primary production camera, we’d recommend spending the extra on an FS700 and R5 or 7Q recorder.

How do I get 4K-capable?

To unlock HD RAW, HFR and 4K recording on your Odyssey 7Q, you’ll need to purchase a firmware update directly from Convergent Design. You can also ‘rent’ recording options from them on a day-by-day basis, so you only pay for a function as and when you need it – a good option if you want to test your 4K workflow before committing to paying for the full upgrade.

Your FS700 will need Version 3.0 of its firmware installed. If you bought your FS700 recently, it should have arrived with this already loaded, but if you think you’re on an older version you can find out how to upgrade here.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Student purchase scheme FAQs: Who do Jigsaw24 work with to provide this scheme?

Wondering if a student purchase scheme is for you? Here are some of the key questions colleges usually ask us before they get started. If you’d like more info, you can always get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333 or email

How do I organise the admin of a scheme like this?

Jigsaw24 work with CHG, who act as the primary lease provider, and Burnett & Associates, who provide the insurance and collect Direct Debit payments.

For more information, call 03332 409 333 or email For all the latest news and FAQs, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook