Digital Signage Exposed – Protecting a Screen in Unsupervised Locations

Posted by: Richard Williams | Posted on: | 0 Comments

While digital signage continues to thrive with the entire out of home sector seeing year-on-year growth, so many locations now have screens running advertising, branding or information content; from subway stations and shopping malls, to gas stations and outdoor digital signage displays on the high street.

While many benefits exist to using digital signage, high initial costs are involved in sourcing the screen, content provision and networking, not to mention the installation and servicing of the display.

For most digital signage owners, a return on these initial costs is essential to ensure the digital signage campaign is worthwhile, so when something untoward happens, and these costs increase, so does the possibility of not getting a return on the investment.

Many screens are placed in unsupervised locations. With subway displays, high street screens and concourse monitors often left to run without any checking on their operational condition. And this can be unfortunate as these screens are in highly exposed locations, and can easily fall victim to vandalism.

Deterring Vandalism

Outdoor digital signage manufacturers have come with all sorts of methods of protecting screens in these exposed locations from attacks by vandals. The simplest method of course is to provide adequate physical protection. Steel LCD enclosures, shatterproof screens and other forms of hardware protection can eliminate most threats of damage. But other methods to deter vandalism have been tried too.

Using internal cameras inside the digital signage display is one method. These cameras activate if the device is impacted and a shock is measured, then the cameras switches on and displays the image for the attacker on the screen, while recording and warning the vandal that they will be reported.

This type of anti-vandal protection, however, is fairly flawed. If the location is very dark, or the attackers are hooded, then the camera may be unable to record an image. Secondly, while this may deter people from attempting to vandalise the screen in the future, it doesn’t prevent the initial impact, and quite possible, could actually encourage vandalism once people are aware of the system and hit it with the intention of getting the camera device to kick in.

Vandalised screens can cost


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