AMX, the control panels company that acquired Inspired Signage almost four years ago, has launched a new tool, a total cost of ownership (TCO) calculator for digital signage installations. AMX is making the TCO calculator available free for any organization who wishes to upload it to their Website.
TCO calculator lets buyers compare digital signage solutions and evaluate costs, both fixed and recurring. The TCO calculator also serves as an education vehicle introducing new buyers to the factors involved in digital signage deployments. AMX will be demonstrating the TCO calculator at Almo’s E4 AV Tour December 15 in New York City.
By inputting the features of two different signage products, the TCO calculator generates a cost comparison enabling potential buyers to make informed purchase decisions. Users can compare factors including buying versus monthly subscription service, software fees, maintenance, electricity costs, period of operation and size of deployment.
“A device like this can really benefit the marketplace as there are a number of options and variables that need to be analyzed and understood to make the best purchase in a digital signage deployment,” said Sean McNeill, AMX Vice President of Business Development. “As the digital signage industry is beginning to see explosive growth, organizations and businesses considering a deployment now have a source to educate themselves on the cost factors that come into play.”
Inputs include three main categories:
- Digital Signage Requirements – identify the number of digital signage players for an installation, plus the hours, days and years you anticipate your digital players will be operating; you have the option of identifying your local electricity costs based on the location signage will be deployed.
- Cost of Deployment – what are the costs of the player, software and any licensing fees
- Power Consumption – the watts of power the player requires to operate
The TCO calculator was created with input from industry experts such as InfoComm Academy Faculty Instructor and leading digital signage consultant Lyle Bunn. It introduces potential buyers to aspects of a deployment that they may not have contemplated. For example, companies must consider the alternatives of purchasing the hardware or a lease-like monthly subscription solution. Software cost and fees are assessed. And maintenance considerations are evaluated through noting the construction of the hardware, namely whether the solution is designed with solid state parts or moving parts. Moving parts, like a fan, may require repair or replacement during the deployment period.
The TCO calculator even analyzes environmental impact of players and employs wattage information to calculate electricity usage by location (state).