So, What's the Difference Between an Off-the-Shelf and Custom Monitor?
There are a lot of ways to describe the differences between off-the-shelf and custom monitors, but the easiest way to understand the difference is that a custom monitor provides the user with a set of features which meets their exact needs. This doesn't mean that a custom monitor is wholly designed for a single customer - a very expensive proposition - but it means the monitor has been modified or improved to match a specific set of requirements.
Many of our display partners have the ability to take a standard monitor platform and convert it into a custom solution for our customers. Customizations include:
- Increased brightness
- Add or remove I/O
- Add certifications or safety marks
- Offer custom color and logo placement options for improved brand recognition and marketing
None of these options are available in off-the-shelf monitors.
Custom Solutions Come with Plenty of Support
In the off-the-shelf world what you see is what you get. You have no guarantee of life cycle and the OEM manufacturer doesn't even know you're using their monitor most instances. Very often you can be caught flat-footed with an EOL notice and at times you may be subject to limited or no availability from the manufacturer or distribution without any warning.
On the other hand, custom monitors are lifecycle managed, built to forecast and maintained to inventory. In addition, multiple layers of service and support are available as well as advanced replacements for failed units to minimize customer downtime.
Customized is Cost Effective
Finally, custom monitors are not nearly as expensive as some people think. In fact, if you look at all of the expenses that go into managing an off-the-shelf monitor for a long life platform, you might be surprised to find that for a small increase in price per unit you can avoid multiple EOL notifications, and the hours and hours of testing and validation required each time a new monitor is selected -- not to mention, all the stress of sourcing alternative solutions.
Yes it's true that custom monitors have a higher sticker price than off-the-shelf, but the ability to source a product that will meet your needs at year 1 and year 5, combined with the flexibility to promote your brand, add certifications as needed and make changes when necessary, may be well worth the additional investments.