To make your digital signage successful, as well as having a top-notch screen, the device you choose to deliver your digital signage on-screen is an important consideration.
These days things have moved on from just attaching a laptop to a display and leaving it noisily whirring away. You can now get media solutions built into the screens themselves (system-on-chip), or you can add them via standalone USB sticks, HDMI sticks or mini-PCs.
Your choice will decide on the amount of control you need to update your display(s), the amount of power you need (and are willing to pay for) to run the device, and, of course, its cost. Here’s a quick run-down of the different types of digital signage display hardware available out there to help you make your choice.
The simplest solution is to use a USB flash drive stick with a looped display of content on it. You just plug it into the display and it shows the content on it automatically. This is great for single-use displays that you have easy access to, as it involves you physically replacing the USB stick whenever you want to update the content. This is one of the cheapest (and quietest) solutions to run, but it means that a lot of the best parts of digital signage – ease of updating content, controlling multiple displays – aren’t available to you.
Similar to USBs, but usually a step up in terms of using connectivity for updates, are HDMI stick media player devices that connect via a display’s HDMI port. For example, the ASUS Chromebit or Amazon’s Fire TV stick. Both let you control the content remotely, but the Chomebit is more supported in terms of apps available for running display signs.