Digital out of home media has come a long way over the last decade. From retail stores and shopping malls to the outdoor digital signage that is being used along roadsides and along high streets – it seems TV screens are now everywhere.
And this technology is not just being used for the purposes of advertising and promotion there is a more practical side to outdoor TV screens that is helping to provide important services – especially in remote areas.
Providing important information in remote areas has always been difficult. Road closures, natural disasters (landslides, avalanche warnings etc) local news information, are all important in remote areas as if people get stranded the dangers are amplified by the remoteness and lack of help in an area.
Digital signage screens are now being used in many remote areas to provide such information. No other medium is as effective. Radio broadcasts are only effective if the radio is on and tuned in, and other forms of communication can’t compete with the immediacy of outdoor digital signage.
The only problem in using screens in such remote areas is ensuring they are maintained an in working order, especially as many remote areas are in harsh environments – and quite often unmanned.
Limitations of outdoor digital signage
From frozen ski resorts, to dried sun-baked areas of the outback, digital signage can actually function reliably – anywhere. However, screens do require protection and this comes in several facets:
The correct operating temperature is an important aspect for ensuring the long life of a screen as well as preventing it failing. IN areas where excessive heat is a problem, screens are housed in LCD enclosures with cooling systems installed. These vary from cooling fans to cut off switches and air conditioners; whist in cold areas, insulation and heaters are used inside the LCD enclosure to maintain a steady temperature.
Weather protection is another important facet for an outdoor screen in a remote area. Any LCD enclosure housing such a device has to be waterproof otherwise the screen will fail during the first storm. But other weather elements have to be considered such as snow and hail but also wind blown debris and airborne dust – both of which can lead to similar problems to water penetrating the device.
Another aspect to outdoor screens is the physical protection, especially as many remote areas are unmanned. Accidental impacts, vandalism and other incidents can disable a screen which may not get noticed by the screen operators for weeks, in which case it could be too late. Solid steel LCD enclosures will protect against most impacts and attempts at deliberate damage – ensuring the screens are in operational condition when it is needed.