The Benefits of Digital Displays

Louise Smyth

Zoltán Kiss discusses technical advances in high-end industrial displays and highlights a number of sophisticated solutions that suit a wide range of applications

For many years it has been possible to observe a fight on the smart television market for our movies and living rooms: manufacturers offer wider and wider, high-resolution, bright, specially shaped, elegant - and of course more and more expensive - products that feature outstanding audiovisual properties. The thinner, the more curved, the less framed the set is, the higher the price consumers are willing to pay for them. The situation however is completely different in the area of high-end industrial displays. For most of the applications here, it is sufficient to have a 7-10in screen size. Far more important properties are the robust, rugged design, the ability to withstand extreme environmental circumstances, the presence of the embedded PC and the touch panel, the good outdoor visibility and readability, and the industrial operating temperature range. It is also important to be able to purchase the devices for a long time in the same form factors. Sometimes there is also demand in this area for special and extreme designs – for instance, kiosk applications such as interactive information counters, shop displays, information displays at production halls or community area. Here, the size of the panel as well as its thickness and weight also matter.

There are many specialist manufacturers offering solutions for these market niches, but the products are not widely advertised. Users may source them through solution providers, or find them at exhibitions, shows and via special online shops. This article showcases the Faytech high-end industrial display solutions presented by Endrich at industrial expos such as Electronica and the Embedded World exhibitions.

The largest touch PC

The first in the series is Faytech’s improved open-frame touch monitor family, the flat yet rugged solution for easy implementation. It is designed as an interactive touch display for digital signage, industrial automation, shopping mall, meeting room, hotel, and classroom applications. With its hardened cover lens and galvanised steel frame, these monitors enable flush surface integration for all applications. The zinc-coated metal housing is equipped with VESA-mount as well as surrounding screw domes for robust fixation. The 10-point capacitive multi-touch controlled by high performance EETI-ICs has outstanding reliability even when raining, or when it is used in foggy or dirty environments. If the user is wearing rubber or winter gloves the touch panel keeps its functionality and the application being controlled.

When investigating simple commercial displays, and taking a closer look at the layered structure, one can find air gaps in between, which are responsible for internal reflections, which cause losses in light passing through. To compensate for this negative effect when using the display outdoor or in high ambient light environment, the only possibility of those solutions is to empower backlight, which results in higher power consumption and shorter lifetime. Faytech uses precise optical bonding processes combined with chemically etched glasses and its enhanced backlights contribute a perfect readability in all environments.

Additionally, external reflections are reduced via the chemically etched cover lens with anti-glare coating. In direct sunlight, brightly lit shopping centres or industrial workshops, the displays’ quality is always crystal clear. Faytech guarantees zero dead pixels on all TFT displays. To provide best power consumption, - as an option -  an ambient light sensor can be integrated enabling automated backlight dimming, e.g. at night-time. Equipped with various interfaces these monitors can be connected to any computer system. There are touch drivers available for Windows, Linux, Mac and Android.

The available interfaces meet the usual industrial standards such as HDMI 1.3, DVI, VGA for display card connectivity, USB for touch panel connectivity supported by Windows, Linux, Mac and Android drivers. The family contains several models in different sizes: 15in, 21.5in, 32in, 43in, 55in and what it makers believe to be the world’s largest 86in touch screen, from standard SVGA 1024X768 resolution and 700:1 contrast to 3840X2160 resolution and 1600:1 contrast ratio.

The application areas include:

•          Industrial control rooms

•          Advertisement boards

•          Exhibition booths

•          Public area (shopping mall, airport bus station) information kiosk

•          Industrial control interfaces

•          Dashboards

•          Digital signage

•          Interactive classrooms

•          Meeting tooms

 

The “digital poster”

The other interesting product is the 43in IP65 high-brightness embedded PC. It is the 21st century replacement and modern alternative of in- and outdoor stand-up posters, also known as customer stoppers. This enhanced multi-media monitor can attract the attention of pedestrians or guide restaurant guests with the possibility to display multimedia contents such as high-resolution (animated) pictures or videos. Its thin design and the ability to stand firm and solid with the aluminium support attached make the device perfectly fitting to place in shop windows. Its screen has a display ratio of 16:9 in portrait format, and has an industrial A+ quality LCD panel backed by Faytech's 100 % no dead pixel guarantee, with antiglare treatment (chemical etched) and glass front reaching MosH 7. The housing consists of aluminium and metal and has complete IP65 protection for applications under harsh environmental circumstances, offering a water- and dust-proof solution. The device has an optically bonded glass protection front, which will improve the stability, reduce the internal reflection, but also increase the viewing angle. It has a backlight brightness of at least 1,000cd/m², which guarantees a super sharp and clear picture, even when exposed to direct sunlight. Beside this, it is completely safe to install it as an outdoor application because it runs on 24V supply voltage. The PC is powered by Allwinner V 40 Cortex A7 QuadCore CPU, equipped by 1GB DDR3 RAM and 8GB EMMC Flash, and has preinstalled Android 6.0 OS. As the networking interfaces, LAN and WiFi are both available. This device is the perfect cost-effective solution for in- and outdoor applications in the field of digital signage. With its modern design and sleek look, the device would fit perfectly in a shop, company entrance, restaurant, shopping mall, waiting room, exhibition booth or any other related application.

Zoltán Kiss is with Endrich