7 Considerations When Choosing an Outdoor Digital Kiosk

outdoor digital kiosk at airport

Outdoor digital kiosks are convenient displays that can provide access to a range of self-service solutions. Businesses utilise these kiosks to interact with their customers outside of their building. Digital advertising is the most popular use for outdoor digital kiosks as they provide you with another location in which you can communicate to your potential customers. However, the outdoor digital kiosk can also offer interactivity as a feature, letting users choose the information they want to be displayed. Wayfinding is an example of this as the user can tap a location on the screen to bring up directions and information on the nearby area.

The versatility of these devices is why businesses are spending more and more on out-of-home (OOH) advertising. The Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA) found that OOH revenue increased by 16.7% – equating to roughly $7.1bn – in 2021 compared to the previous year.

You may be looking into adding an outdoor digital kiosk to your business profile in order to reach a wider audience and engage with them. Before you do here are 7 considerations to make when choosing an outdoor digital kiosk.

Jump to:

1. Location

2. Weather protection

3. Security

4. Content

5. Brightness and visibility

6. Damage protection

7. Cost

1. Location

outdoor kiosk at train station

One of the first considerations you will come across when deciding to introduce an outdoor digital display is where it will be placed. Depending on the purpose of your kiosk the location will differ. A ticketing kiosk for a car park will need to be placed around the parking location. While a wayfinding kiosk would be more likely placed in an entrance location, for example, at a retail park, customers arriving could go straight to the outdoor digital kiosk and get directions to the store they are looking for.

Another consideration when thinking about the location is the land it will be on. The area around where the kiosk will be placed needs to be sturdy land or additional support will need to be added to ensure the kiosk can be secured. Finally, being outdoors means physical connections to a power supply or the Internet will be harder. In the event that your kiosk would be unable to make these connections due to being too far away from the relevant ports, additional cabling will be needed.

2. Weather protection

kiosk on path

The biggest caveat when it comes to outdoor digital kiosks is that they will be open to the elements at all times. All types of weather have the potential to damage the components of a kiosk. Excessive heat can reduce the lifespan of your outdoor digital display through overheating, while rainfall, dust and dirt can damage the electrics if they can enter the device.

Due to the damage that can be caused by these weather conditions outdoor kiosks are built with additional protection compared to a typical indoor version.

To combat the effects of hotter climates, outdoor display kiosks can come with an enclosure air conditioner built-in. This can seal out the hotter outside air and keep the internal temperature of the kiosk down. Manufacturers can reduce the risk of water and dirt entering the device by properly sealing the body. The degree of protection provided by an enclosure for electrical equipment is indicated by the IP rating it receives. The rating will have two numbers, the first indicates protection from solids such as dust and dirt and the second states the protection against liquids. For example, the LamasaTech Guida outdoor kiosk has an IP55 rating, which means it is mostly protected against dust with no harmful deposits and low-pressure jets of water from all directions.

3. Security

Digital signage kiosk in a city

Another protection-based consideration you’ll come across when choosing an outdoor digital kiosk is the security of the device. Due to being in a public space the device is open to being vandalised and attempts are made to take components. For example, many kiosks come with an inbuilt player with an operating system working on them, this is something that could be targeted by thieves. The LamasaTech Guida outdoor kiosk has a secure internal locker with tamper-proof locks to protect the integrated player from being removed by anyone unauthorised.

Physical security is not the only form you may need to consider. Cybersecurity is also an issue and due to being outside, can take longer to notice the effects than with an indoor kiosk. Hackers could alter your display and with it being away from your building you may not notice. This should be discussed with your kiosk provider when during the enquire stage of your plan to be confident in the kiosk’s internet security.

4. Content

Digital signage kiosk

The main reason you’ll want to start utilising an outdoor digital kiosk will be to help spread your business’s message further. 76% of American consumers enter stores they have never visited before simply because of the signage. An outdoor kiosk allows you to reach an increased number of people and draw them in with the value your content offers.  

A CMS (Content Management System) can be used to create content to be displayed on your kiosk. The CMS can also schedule and monitor your created content, letting you control exactly what content is displayed and when. You could have a range of adverts focusing on different products that you’d like your outdoor kiosk to display at certain times. Using a CMS, you can set which advertisements are displayed at your preferred times. This also means you don’t have to access the kiosk every time you want to change the display as you will be able to use the scheduling feature to plan the content.

Some manufacturers can provide you with their own CMS. LamasaTech offers PeakSignage as a way of helping you manage your content with a simple drag and drop editor. PeakSignage has the added bonus of allowing you to manage your campaigns remotely from the cloud.

5. Brightness and visibility

outdoor kiosk at airport

Even if you design the best content, it will have no effect if your audience can’t see it. Due to sunlight, outdoor kiosks can have visibility issues because of glare and reflections. The visibility will be dependent on the brightness available on your device. A higher brightness will help you to combat the visibility issue caused by sunlight. Digital screen devices are given a brightness level rating called nits. For an outdoor display, it is suggested that it is capable of at least 2,000 nits to maintain readability.

Glare and reflections on the screen can also reduce the readability of your device, stopping your audience from interacting with your content. A way of fighting this issue would be to go with an outdoor kiosk that has some form of a coating on the screen that reduces these effects. The LamasaTech Guida outdoor kiosk has an anti-reflective coating with a 2000 nit display to provide high readability in direct sunlight.

6. Damage protection

kiosk no damage symbol

As mentioned above, being placed outside does pose some risk to your kiosk. Vandalism and accidental damage are the main threats to an outdoor digital display. An important consideration here is the materials used by the manufacturer to build your kiosk. Durable materials, particularly on the outer shell, will help to better protect the device from damage. The screen can also be protected through the use of a vandal-proof display or tempered screen surface. These durable materials can provide a kiosk with increased protection and reduce the impact of minor damages from human actions or the environment.

7. Cost

A wallet with dollar bills being held near it

Due to the materials and technology required to protect outdoor kiosks from damage, they are typically more expensive than indoor versions. The overall price of your kiosk will come down to a couple of factors, the cost of the device itself and the installation, as well as the software licence. Your kiosk will need some form of software to be able to run and display the content you have created. Many kiosk providers will offer their own solutions for you to use and will typically be made cheaper if you order kiosks in bulk.

Once you have considered these aspects of outdoor kiosks you are ready to make your move and find the right device for you. If you have any questions get in touch today and we’ll help you with your digital display needs.

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