What is the difference between a TV and a commercial screen?

HowToAV explains the differences between a domestic television and a commerical display screen

What is the difference between between a domestic television and a commercial display screen?

Domestic Televisions and Commercial Screens may look the same but come in two very different price brackets and have very different applications.

There are two main options to be looking at: the consumer television and the commercial display screen.

More functionality comes from a television than from a commerical display. Consider a TV as a complete system in one product and a commerical display as a 'component' of a larger system. 

The most obvious difference is the presence (or lack of) a TV tuner. A Television features a built-in tuner, whereas a commercial display screen doesn’t.

Built-in loudspeakers will also be an expected feature of a domestic TV, whereas in a commercial screen you shouldn’t expect loudspeakers as standard.
The expectation is that the commercial screen will be part of a ‘silent’ digital signage system which doesn’t need audio, or that your screen will form part of a larger system which features a public address, background music or separate loudspeaker system. Alternatively, your own choice of loudspeakers (like wall –mount or ceiling speakers, for example) can easily be connected to the commercial screen’s audio outputs.

Also, it will be difficult to find a domestic functionality such as Smart TV in a commerical screen.

Does less functions mean a cheaper product?

Comparative costs of the same size TV and commercial screen being typically 50%, even 100% higher in a commercial display.

The reason for this is down to quality of build and the expected operating hours of each option.
The average number of viewing hours of a television is approximately 4 hours per day, whereas a commercial screen is expected (and designed and built) to be running for 12 or 24 hours a day, every day of the week. Therefore, the quality of components and quality of build of a commercial screen needs to be significantly greater than a domestic TV.

What to consider when choosing a TV or commerical display

Screen burn’ is a really important consideration in digital signage applications. Digital signage is likely to display the same or very similar images on screen 24-7 which, if displayed on a domestic television, would very quickly result in a screen-burn effect – a permanent discolouration of screen pixels which appears as a ghost image.

A commercial screen features advanced anti-burn features to avoid this problem.

Commercial screens are also more likely to feature a rather more ‘robust’ housing than a domestic TV. Considering that commercial screens are likely to be installed in public access or high traffic areas, many are built with stronger metal housings compared to the lightweight plastic housings of a TV. And, therefore, the issue of weight should also be considered when mounting a commercial screen, as it is likely to be significantly heavier than your flat screen TV at home.

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