Touchscreen vs. Static: Choosing a Digital Building Directory

As digital signage experts, customers often ask for our input when they need to make a choice between purchasing touchscreen or static building directories. The truth is that both types of signage have advantages and disadvantages, and as long as our customer knows what the directory’s primary usage will be, it should ultimately be a fairly easy decision to make once a few basic factors have been taken into consideration.

Top Considerations When Choosing Between Static and Touchscreen Digital Building Directories

Static, non-touch signs and directories are generally the best choice when the content being presented is simple, limited in scope, graphics-based or frequently changed.  They are also quite useful when the on-screen data is intended to be viewed by multiple users at the same time, such as the case with airport monitors that display flight information, or for building directories in very busy lobbies. Understanding how much information needs to be displayed at once, and to how many “users” at the same time, is key.

Space considerations also come into play when comparing different types of digital signage. An interactive touchscreen is capable of presenting a great deal of information in a limited space, while a static digital directory requires a much larger footprint to communicate the same amount of material.  And more often than one might think, a single customer may actually need variations of both types of signage. For example, a large hospital or hospital system would likely benefit from both touchscreen and static forms of digital signage.  It would be appropriate for the main building lobby to use a touchscreen system to direct patients to other buildings or specific floors and suites, while a static digital directory would be ideal for use on a single floor or within a larger series of suites. The same would hold true for a college or large corporate campus.  Both types of digital signage would be relevant and practical, depending on its installed location.

Regardless of the type of directory chosen, it’s important to keep in mind that as long as it suits its intended use, content is still king -- the most effective directories will always be those that share knowledge and effectively educate their intended audience while simplifying the overall user experience.

As a US-based designer and manufacturer of both static and touchscreen digital building directories, REDYREF understands the importance of attractive design, quality construction and seamless implementation.  Using the latest technologies, we provide our customers with user-friendly end products that meet their unique specifications and the company’s overall wayfinding goals. Find out how REDYREF enhances the end-user experience via customized building directories by requesting a proposal online or calling (800) 628-3603 today.

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