Ask These 3 Questions to Save Money, Energy on Visual Displays
If you’re in the business of buying visual displays, you already know of the various considerations you need to make, depending on how the device will be used, where, and by whom.
Is the screen big enough to be seen clearly from the other side of the room? Is the pixel pitch sufficient that the screen can be viewed close-up? Is the bezel narrow enough to allow for multi-display installations?
All remain fundamental decisions in creating the desired experience, whether for a handful, tens, hundreds, or even thousands of displays in single or multiple locations. And, with a growing focus on sustainability, coupled with the escalating pressures being faced due to rising utility costs, both the energy efficiency of displays and the running costs associated with them are increasingly critical factors. Even with various recent government interventions and price caps, the outlook in the short term, and unpredictability into the future, is far from reassuring. Managing costs and an eye on ROI has never been more in focus.
The need for and reliance on these displays, whether a creative and eye-catching videowall at the hotel reception, interactive displays for wayfinding, or digital menus in the café, bar or restaurant, have not changed. To reduce the financial burden, though, hotels must, or at least should, now take a more strategic approach. Here are three factors to consider.
- How efficient is it?
The first thing one should do is to get a better understanding around the energy efficiency of the product itself. In 2022, new regulation was passed to ensure greater clarity and understanding around the energy efficiency of electronic displays, so as to support more educated buying decisions. An updated and simplified A-G measurement rating – with A being the best – has been introduced, also giving greater scope for energy efficiency enhancements and allowing manufacturers to keep pushing possibilities and differentiate with more power conscious products. A QR barcode is also available to bring up extensive details stored on the EPREL database, allowing greater transparency for customers and easier market surveillance by national authorities.
The difference in running costs between a G- and an F-rated appliance could be substantial for a business, with no impact on the desired result. Reducing the use of older, less efficient equipment is also worth considering for the long-term. It is currently estimated that up to 25 percent of products in the market do not comply with the previous energy efficiency labelling regulations and that around 10 percent of potential energy savings are lost due to non-compliance.
- When is it actually being used?
It may seem obvious, but it is also a good thing to remember that, if nobody is looking at a display, it may be an idea to switch it off, or at least to power it down. In many cases, this is easier said than done, but many modern displays now have remote management capabilities, via either built-in or compatible software.
Displays, be they dvLED, digital signage, interactive touch screens or professional displays, may feature ‘smart power’ tech, automatically adjusting based on use. Alternatively, these can be entirely micro-managed down to the smallest detail, from switching off between specific hours (such as check-in desks, in the bar, function rooms, et al), to reducing brightness depending on the time of day. The savings could be substantial. Standing still is a costly exercise.
Equally, remote management platforms can help hoteliers to manage this important element, with the ability to power down one, some or all displays – be they in in a single hotel or in multiple locations around the world – at the touch of a button, saving not only on energy consumption, but on truck rolls, fuel bills and time spent, too.
All of these solutions can also extend the lives of displays, resulting in lower maintenance costs and less frequent need to invest in replacements.
- Could you save money, energy with LED?
Finally, it is important to choose the right technology. Does the hotel environment really warrant or benefit from 4K? Is LED or LCD the way forward?
Direct view LED displays, in many instances, when comparing like-for-like sizes. will consume less energy than their LCD counterparts. So, by replacing old LCD screens with dvLED displays could be an immediate cost saver for energy consumption, and the LED display is more modular, allowing for partial replacements for faulty sections, helping to make its lifespan longer, too.
With the rise of dvLED adoption, and a natural lowering of costs, some displays are designed to deliver low energy consumption – between 20 percent, and in some instances, as much as 50 percent, when compared to similar products on the market – without compromising on performance.
Behind the stunning videos of flowers, animals, and cityscapes you might see demonstrating on displays of all types, shapes and sizes on a showroom floor, or an exhibitor’s booth, it is always worth diving below the surface. When it comes to electricity, you’d be amazed to learn how much you can save.