Digital signage players: The ultimate guide

Andy Wade
February 1, 2024

Digital signage players display the content of your digital signage. The digital signage player will search the web (cloud) every few minutes for fresh updates, download them, and re-play the material on the display. You may develop and update whatever you are showing using digital signage software and its widgets and transmit it to your digital display player, screen, or kiosk.

Your updated information will often appear on the digital media player within two minutes. Based on the digital signage software you use, it will cache your content directly on the digital signage player and keep playing even without internet access.

What is a Digital Signage Player?

So, what are digital signage players? They are devices that manage playback, format, and resolution to guarantee the best possible display of the content appearing on electronic screens after being retrieved from the signage software. It does this specifically by using data from the screen content management software to ensure that what you display appears on the screen appropriately regarding aspect ratio, image quality, audio/video synchronization, video playback speed, and other factors.

Types of Digital Signage Players

Media players for digital signage are essential for bringing engaging material to digital displays. However, before choosing any option, is it advisable to ponder the cost of a digital signage player? This section will cover the types of digital signage players to assist you in making an educated choice.

SoC Display: Merging Intelligence with the Screen

The System on a Chip (SOC) is a computer chip embedded in the digital display screen. It features a built-in digital signage player. It is an extremely convenient alternative for enterprises. Furthermore, because SOC is a digital signage component, it removes wiring and internet connectivity requirements.


  • SoC has a reduced footprint and requires less space because all its components occupy a single chip and are internally integrated.
  • The increasing number of circuits on the chip gives higher functionality and adaptability.
  • Application-specific SoCs tend to be cost-effective.
  • Increased system dependability and reduced power needs


  • You can't just replace a single device with these highly integrated devices—you must replace the whole SoC. Damage to the System or even just one transistor might be costly.

External Media Players: The HDMI Connection 

External media players are tiny computers showing material from your digital signage software to the screens. These players are little boxes you can conceal behind the displays and out of sight. Most external media players are simple plug-and-play. After connecting your HDMI, your content will play on the screen.


  • External media players offer excellent reliability and frequently handle any content you throw at them.
  • You get excellent external media player support. You can solve any issues affecting the software remotely and fix hardware issues for a broken media player by swapping it.
  • In terms of cost, external media players are pretty friendly. You can use different media players for varying degrees of content. For example, if you need to play simple content, you might get a less capable media player at an affordable price.


  • External media players add extra cables, which may interfere with the aesthetics of the setup.

Navigating the Market Giants

So, how big is the digital signage media player market? Research predicts that the Digital Signage Media Player Market will be worth USD 1.95 billion in 2024 and USD 3.02 billion by 2029, increasing at a CAGR of 9.09% throughout the projection. Digital signage is playing an essential role in influencing buying decisions. Institutions such as government, medical care, public transportation, and retail outlets rely significantly on it to better interact and communicate with their target consumers. The media player is the heart of a digital signage structure meant to broadcast the content to the screens.

SoC Leaders

Here are the top SoC leaders in the market:


LG webOS digital signage displays use a built-in SoC (System on chip), eliminating the need for a separate media player to interface with the server when playing media content. LG webOS is a Linux-based comprehensive digital signage platform. Some models include the SM5KE series, with a price range of $400 to $1500, and the SH7E series, which ranges from $1100 to $2000.


Samsung Smart Signage Platform (SSSP) is a Tizen-powered, comprehensive digital signage system. Integrated into Samsung digital signage screens, no extra hardware is necessary to interface with the servers and play media content, resulting in increased efficiency and a cheaper total cost of ownership. In recent years, Samsung has become a market leader in SoC digital signage players, with their screens providing high-resolution displays. The versions include SSSP 2 to SSSP10. You can purchase different models with prices ranging from $500 to over $5000.



Sony has positioned itself for success by standardizing their SoC displays on widely used, open-source operating systems like Android. Because of this, software businesses can now create native software instead of modifying it to fit ever-changing proprietary operating systems. They can provide native software that performs better than software modified for other SoC display manufacturers' use on complicated and exclusive operating systems. Some of the models include the FW-98BZ50L, which costs approximately $10,000. There are also other models in the BRAVIA BZ40L and BRAVIA BZ35L Series. 


Philips is one of the most recent entrants to the market with a SoC solution. Unlike Samsung or LG, which have their specialized chipset, the Philips B, C, Q, D, P, H, and L lines come in a more extensive range of sizes and run an Android OS. SoC-equipped Philips smart televisions are quick, flexible, and safe. The integrated Android OS offers unparalleled versatility and lightning-fast performance. A good model example is the Philips 65" B-Line 65BFL2114, which costs around $900.


The ViewSonic® EMBEDDED Signage Platform (VESP) features a Linux-based Kernel operating system, an all-in-one system that streamlines installation and maintenance. No external devices are necessary to play digital material or connect with the server while using VESP. Take advantage of enhanced capacity with several web formats, streamlined development, and safe protection. You can buy the Viewsonic 86'' 4K Commercial Display-CDE8620 in this range, which costs approximately $4000. 

External Player Champions

The following are some reliable external player providers you can use for your digital signage solution:


BrightSign is the worldwide market champion and one of the most dependable partners that fuel the signage industry. It helps companies attract, engage, and fascinate customers by turning visual media and experiences to life. BrightSign offers dependability, security, and unrivaled performance, providing outstanding client experiences. The company provides clients with a comprehensive digital signage solution that includes some of the best external players. A good example is the BrightSign LS425, which costs around $350. 


SpinetiX empowers enterprises to realize the full potential of their goals. For over 15 years, the firm has consistently developed to provide cutting-edge technology that allows consumers to shine. Whether you need a plug-and-play solution that brings your story to fruition or a completely customized solution to capture your target market, SpinetiX is your partner in growing your business. Their external players are reliable and an excellent solution to showcase your content. For instance, the HMP400/HMP400W, which costs nearly $1000, is a perfect choice. 

Look DS

Look DS is a multinational software team with offices in many places worldwide. Their main offering is the Look digital signage solution. However, besides software, Look manufactures and sells hardware media players. It has excellent options: the Look HD-2222 and Look HD-2218 PRO players. They cost $169 and $200 respectively. 


AOPEN created the Mini PC, an ultra-small style of digital media player, 25 years ago. The business now has various industrial, commercial, and medical-grade gadgets perfect for drive-thru signs, digital menu displays, kiosks, machine controls, medical carts, and other applications. One good example is the AOPEN DE7200-3430, which costs around $840. 


IAdea is always open to collaborating with fresh, creative, and disruptive companies to develop original solutions that meet the demands of the rapidly changing smart workplace management industry. After 20 years of development, their products, including external players, have superior finish, robustness as field devices, innovation, and interoperability with top third-party solutions. One good example is the IAdea XMP-6250 Media Player, which costs around $390. 

Budget-Friendly Alternatives


If you are looking for affordable alternatives for digital signage players, TCL Android TV and Mi TV are excellent SOC solutions to consider. These TVs offer one of the most incredible viewing experiences. They also have micro-dimming tech and AI, allowing them to offer high-quality images regardless of viewing angle. TCL Android and Mi TVs also support the Dolby Vision HDR color standard, making films and shows appear rich and colorful on your TV screen. In addition to the superb visual quality, the SoC eliminates the need for an external media player. A good example is the TCL 55S434, which you can access at approximately $500.

Likewise, Amazon Fire TV Stick and Google Chromecast are good options if you are looking for budget players. The Amazon Fire TV Stick, which costs around $50, is a video streaming gadget that turns your television into a smart TV. With this one, you can display your digital signage content across all your screens. The Google Chromecast allows you to stream anything to your TV from the cloud and enjoy HD (and UHD, depending on your device and app) video and crisp audio. It is also a reliable digital signage player and is not too pricey like most other choices. At just $40, you can have your own media player. 

Digital Signage Players and DS Software

Digital signage players will allow you to play your content on your screens, but they can't function seamlessly without digital signage software. Choosing the right software allows you to remotely manage the content on your displays and access various features, including offline playback, proof-of-play, smart scheduling, layout design, and third-party integration. You also get to create appealing content that draws significant attention from your target audience. As such, ensure you have the right software in place if you want to make the most out of your digital signage players.

Choosing the right digital signage player

Your media player plays a vital role in your digital signage project. Comprehending your requirements, financial constraints, and compatibility demands is critical before purchasing a media player. It's also crucial to look at the memory and processing capacity necessary for running your content efficiently, along with the reputation and reviews of the product. By following these steps, you can be confident that your company is getting the most outstanding digital signage player. Recall that a robust media player is an investment that will yield positive returns over time.

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