When Outdoor Digital Signage Goes Wrong

Perhaps the fastest growing sector in the digital out of home market is in the growth of outdoor digital signage screens.

A few years behind the indoor market, outdoor digital signage is now catching up fast. More and more installs are being erected along roadsides, high streets and outside shop frontages.

But it is not just advertising that these outdoor screens are being used for. LCD screens are often taken outdoors for whole host of other reasons; such as providing information or screening TV events such as sports games.

However, as a relatively new industry there can often be failures, common mistakes of breakdowns caused by a lack of experience in this new industry.

Even the biggest can go bad

When NFL stalwarts the Dallas Cowboys had a giant digital signage screen installed in their stadium all was going well. The giant 90 feet high screen that hung over the pitch was used for displaying scores, important match information and advertising.

And while there was never an issue with the technology it was soon discovered that the screen was too low -amazingly when a visiting team went for a conversion the screen was hit by the ball, deflecting it from its path and causing a controversial in-game decision.

But even regular sized outdoor digital signage can often run into problems:

Protection is vital

There are several common problems associated with using screens in outdoor locations, and most failures occur because of inadequate protection:

• Waterproof – all outdoor digital signage screens should be housed in a waterproof LCD enclosure to prevent rainfall from entering.

• Impacts – Both accidental and deliberate impacts can disable a screen

• Lack of screen protection – Smashed screens are a hazard and a common cause of failure – all screens should be protected with a shatterproof layer.

• Excessive temperatures – Outdoor locations can vary in temperature from sub-zero to extreme heat and any signage system has to have adequate cooling and heating systems to cope.

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