Content for digital signage is no different than the content produced to show on any digital device or screen. Digital signage is simply a medium that displays content such as your computer screen, tablet, or phone.
Have you ever visited the sign near the entrances at malls? Not long ago they had a printed display showing a layered view of the mall with letters and numbers indicating the location of stores. Today, these signs are being digitized to improve the “mall shopping experience” by offering more features than just a printed directory.
Such signs are designed like any other content and enhanced with interactive, sometimes 2D and 3D features. The screen is just like a TV or tablet except the content is being controlled either locally or remotely by a specialized device that communicates between the screen and control centre.
Therefore, to produce a digital sign, three components are necessary: a display (a screen), a streaming device (such as Google Chromebit) which is inserted into the TV, and finally, the content itself.
But what about this content? How is it made? Where is it housed? Can a small business afford to produce it? To keep this really simple, let’s look at Apple’s iPhoto app. This app allows you to put together a photo slideshow using a number of different looks and adding music. Easy, right? Once the file is created you can now play it, save it, email it, upload it. This is content and it can be played on any screen.
So, the answer is yes. A small business can afford to run a digital sign because the “content” doesn’t have to be complex. Animated text with an animated background can be created very inexpensively. You can also display a variety of apps such as weather, news, sports, and social media for free. And all content is managed remotely, safely secured on cloud servers and optionally on the streaming device. Want to add a YouTube video to your “playlist?” A quick call and that video will appear on your screen within a few hours.
Content for digital signage can be mystifying because when you see one in front of you while eating at a restaurant, you’re wondering how can these images are being displayed and changed? Really, no different than the digital billboards now popping up at intersections.
Guess what? The digital age is real and soon enough we will be surrounded by screens when we walk the streets, do our shopping, and ride public transit. The question is: are you ready to subscribe to it?