5. Hardware Choice…What is the most suitable?
Hardware choice can be the difference between having a reliable digital signage solution and having a potential nightmare on your hands.
Whether you have a digital menu board, a directional signage system or you’re selling advertising space, you want to make sure your message continues to get out to your clients as it was meant to.
When considering digital signage, you need to consider that in many cases the screens and media players are not local or easy to physically access.
I know we have installed media players behind screens, in custom surrounds, installed on lift wells in hotel lobbies and many more. Some of which take 20 minutes to get to if you have to. We certainly want to make sure anything running in these sorts of environments are robust and reliable enough to last. We have customers with digital signage screens installed throughout Australia and New Zealand. These need to work all day every day.
Solid state media players, commercial grade computers. Solid state hard drives and commercial grade LCD panels are all ways you can help improve the overall reliability of your digital signage system. When it comes to digital signage the use of domestic computers, televisions and DVD players should avoided at all costs.
Consumer Televisions are generally not warranted for commercial use. They usually do not have symmetrical bezels which are important, especially when placing the screens close to each other. They certainly cannot be mounted in portrait mode which many digital signage customers need, and if one of your screens dies in 12 months time don’t expect to get the same model to match your other screens. They change too frequently in the consumer world.
Consumer computers are often, big, cumbersome, and have noisy fans. Commercial computers can be built fanless, and have solid state hard drives essentially removing any moving parts. They are warranted from 1 to 5 years allowing for 24 hour operations.
The lesson here is you get what you pay for. You are investing substantially into your digital signage solution. Don’t spoil it by purchasing inappropriate hardware.