Tag: menu board
“Can I just buy TV screens from a department store and use them for digital signage displays?”
Of course, you can. You can also use a porcupine for a seat cushion. Either choice presents you with certain and specific pains. (See below: 7 Reasons Consumer Screens Are NOT For Digital Signage Use)
The main reason anyone even considers consumer grade is to try to save money. However, the price between consumer and commercial screens can be as little as a few dollars and the difference is shrinking all the time. Is saving a few dollars up front really worth the risks?
Here is some food for thought. The last link between your message and your audience is your screens. That is why reliability is crucial. In the end, you can have the greatest content in the world but it makes no difference if no one can see it. Commercial grade screens are designed and built to handle the usage requirements of digital signage, hence providing the reliability needed to be successful.
Knowing how important screen selection is, Noventri spends a lot of time vetting suppliers before we associate the Noventri name with them. On rare occasions, you can find a company that has great products along with great support. NEC is one of those companies. NEC screens have an amazing track record for being reliable. They are the only screen supplier that has a 3-year onsite overnight warranty and their team is phenomenal. Their focus is on providing great business products. NEC does not even make consumer grade screens! Since our clients expect personal communication and attention to detail, having a company like NEC is a perfect fit.
Or we could sit on a porcupine. We made the right choice. We’re confident that you will, too.
7 Reasons Consumer Screens Are NOT For Digital Signage Use
1. If customers purchase the Consumer TV on their own, there is a high probability it won’t work correctly and they’ll be chasing problems which their digital signage supplier probably won’t be able to support.
2. Many manufacturers will NOT honor the warranty on Consumer TVs if they are used for professional or Digital Signage applications, even if purchased from a digital signage integrator.
3. Consumer TVs are not made for 24/7 operation. Even though many work just fine, it’s impossible to predict failure rate due to 24/7 operation.
4. There is almost no chance that the supplier will be able to find an identical model, even a few months later.
5. Consumer TVs can’t be mounted vertically (Portrait Mode) because they will overheat. Commercial grade screens have special venting and fans that make this possible. If a consumer screen is mounted vertically (Portrait Mode) you may also find that the screen may not be visible if standing anywhere but directly in front of the screen. The viewing angle is for consumer screens is engineered for the TV to be mounted above someone’s fire place or sitting on an entertainment center.
6. Power On/Off on Consumer TVs cannot be controlled with the Digital Signage Player; they’ll need to be turned On/Off manually.
7. The life of a Consumer TV is about half that of a Professional Digital Signage Display.
Are consumer grade screens a viable alternative? Post your comments and questions below.
LCD screens are a high-value item. You don’t want someone, just anyone, fondling it. And you don’t want outside influences creeping in and slowly destroying it. So you need protection. Digital Signage screens in public areas are vulnerable to all of the above and unless they are properly protected, someone or something will find it and damage or destroy it.
Electronic signage looks great, and when properly managed, brings value to all industries. But if steps are not taken to keep it safe, well… things happen. Indoors or out, digital signage that is within reach of hands will soon find someone groping and touching buttons and settings. Also, indoor and outdoor signage is easily violated by such elements as dust, moisture, and temperature fluctuations.
The right enclosure provides protection from roaming hands and creeping elements. Since advertising networks and message centers are controlled remotely from a central location there is no need to access screens on a regular basis, so locking them away makes sense.
Many owners of digital media networks may balk at the thought of enclosures. What will they look like? Will the enclosures take away from the experience? Will the enclosures blend or compliment with the environment or décor?
Whether they are free-standing, wall or ceiling mounted or displays that are inset into walls with protective screens, choices of materials coupled with innovative design guarantees that enclosures and custom frames will blend with their surroundings.
With so many choices it is recommended that companies look to an experienced reseller that can provide insight into matching a network’s needs to available enclosures.
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Noventri recently came across this particular entry at QSRWeb.com titled, “Where are the traditional menu board companies?”’
We must say, “Kudos, Scott Sharon.” He is right on when he presents several thought-provoking questions in the second paragraph. His statement, “ …most of the digital menu boards are sold by companies outside the menu board industry” is an interesting observation.
We agree wholeheartedly that IT and AV companies are popping up everywhere with the idea that they can jump on the digital menu board bandwagon and mount some video screens using standard digital signage mentality and call them digital menu boards. But they don’t always work.
Scott’s article confirmed what we have always known…just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. There is more to digital menu boards than just screens, software and hardware and this is where IT and AV companies drop the ball many times.
Likewise, for menu board companies to begin offering digital menu boards there would be a stupendous learning curve to overcome. They are far removed from the technology know-how needed to launch digital menu boards and would soon find themselves needing to partner with companies that understand the technology, ergo, IT and AV.
Ideally the solution would be to develop a symbiotic relationship with both…someone who knows the technology as well as the needs of QSRs and menu board usage. After all, traditional menu boards work, it’s just that they are cumbersome to update and compliance is sporadic throughout franchises. Digital menu boards must provide a solution to the aforementioned, but also understand the design elements of a menu and bring to the table a stable, low-cost, easy-to-use technology.
Having worked closely with QSR’s for years, we, by all means do not know everything there is to know about the menu board industry, but we have developed essential relationships and gained inside knowledge along the way. As a company, we can confidently say, there is definitely more to digital menu boards then meets the eye.
Thanks again, Mr. Sharon and QSRWeb.com for sharing this fundamental insight
The new Menu Labeling Law goes into effect beginning March 1, 2011 and will require eateries to display compliant menu boards. Noventri makes it easy with digital menu board technology that brings years of experience and reliability to users.
Smithsburg, MD, October 11, 2010 – The new Federal law passed through healthcare reform legislation is projected to affect over 200,000 restaurants throughout the United States. This opens the need for an easy-to-use, cost effective and energy efficient solution for upgrading menu boards…one that allows dynamic changes as recipes and food items are updated.
Noventri has the solution with their digital menu board technology and digital signage software and years of digital menu board experience. With installations for Aramark, Marriott, The Newseum and more, Noventri has seen first hand the advantages of going digital. Digital menu boards are the perfect solution because they are:
- Easy to design and maintain – this allows eateries to have an attractive menu board that meets the requirements of the law and while staying true to restaurant brands.
- Can be linked to databases and dynamically updated as nutritional content changes are made and promotions can be scheduled to automatically start and stop at specified times.
- Easy day parting for scheduling breakfast, lunch and dinner menus automatically.
- Much more cost effective and energy efficient.
- Eateries using digital boards portray a sleek, updated appearance that customers are coming to expect.
Noventri, known nationwide for innovative digital signage technology and content, has been providing digital menu board solutions with their latest hardware, the Eco-Series SF-100e. This green digital signage player provides a streamlined advantage that is easily hidden behind screens, needs no ventilation, and allows for menu changes on the fly…while saving energy at the same time.
For more information contact Judy L. Hoffman, Public Relations & Marketing at 1-800-359-1858, ext. 211 or email at: email@example.com.
The new Federal law passed through healthcare reform legislation is projected to affect over 200,000 restaurants throughout the United States.
The Food Labeling Law is outlined at: http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/GuidanceDocuments/FoodLabelingNutrition/ucm223408.htm. The highlights are as follows:
- Was signed into law March 23, 2010 and requires nutrition labeling of standard menu items for chain restaurants, retail food establishments and corporate caterers with 20 or more locations, food delivery establishments, convenience stores, movie theaters, bakeries, cafeterias, airlines and trains as well as chain vending machines, food carts, lunch wagons and cookie shops.
- Three major requirements are: calorie count must appear on menus and menu boards (includes desserts, beverages, takeout, and website menus); a statement must appear on the menu that puts the calorie information in the context of a total daily caloric intake; and additional nutritional information must be available upon request.
- All standard menu items (including meat, poultry and alcoholic beverages) will be required to display the calories count in a type size that matches the name or price of the menu item (whichever is larger) and with the same color or contrasting background as the menu item.
- Compliance is required by March 2011.
This new law presents some major challenges that restaurant owners and food services are finding daunting. These include:
- Obtaining proper nutritional analysis from suppliers
- Regulating specific portion control
- Finding aesthetic solutions for displaying nutritional information
- Updating these as suppliers change portion sizes and recipes
Restaurant owners are in a flurry trying to figure out how to display the mandated information within the confines of existing menu boards. Printed signage does not allow the flexibility for changes and updates.
But if restaurants take a digital approach to requirements of the law the last two challenges in the above list are easily solves. Now is the time for restaurants to change to digital menu boards. Why?
- Easy to design and maintain an attractive menu board that meets the requirements of the law and stays true to restaurant brands.
- When linked to databases, digital menu boards are dynamically updated as nutritional content changes are made and as a bonus, promotions can be scheduled to automatically start and stop at specified times.
- Hardware and software for digital menu boards is becoming more cost effective and energy efficient.
- Eateries using digital boards portray a sleek, updated appearance that customers are coming to expect.
Digital menu boards allow restaurants to have the flexibility to create, design and redesign until they find something that works with their particular establishment. This experimentation is missing with printed signage. Also, consider that errors of last minute changes can be fixed in a matter of seconds in one store or over a network of hundreds of stores.
Printed signage does not offer that kind of flexibility. Static menus require a complete remake of the menu board for one small error or change, not to mentions the fees involved in redesign, shipping and the wait for new menus to arrive.
Restaurant owners and franchises are rightfully concerned with the potential consequences of not meeting the requirements of the law by failing to reflect nutritional values correctly or in a timely manner. But digital menu boards free food service providers from fear since information changes are reflected immediately.
It is without question a necessity for restaurants to switch to the use of digital menu boards to meet upcoming regulation deadlines.
Where is the most reliable source for digital menu boards that will change the food service world?
With over 30 years of technology experience, Noventri provides the food service industry with digital menu boards that are at the lowest prices, the easiest to deploy and…are the greenest option available!