“SoC vs Media Players: With more and more manufacturers offering System on a Chip (SoC) solutions, what’s the tipping point end users need to consider when planning their solutions?”
System on a Chip has made large strides over the years in terms of offering a long-term solution for digital signage while keeping the solution lean. There are many benefits to this in terms of cabling, simplicity, and management. However, I still believe the benefits of external players outweigh this in terms of flexibility and longevity. Many of these assets maybe exist for more than five years, and SoCs often get long in the tooth by then. External players offer the ability to add new capabilities and variety in software as well as the ability to customize the experience in many ways while allowing you to replace the hardware at intervals that make the assets continue to be useful. If you’re doing simple signage (menu boards, basic corporate communications, etc.) then SoC is a fine choice. However, if you’re planning to create an experience, leverage additional capabilities, or need to expand later, then a media player is still a great choice, and I believe will remain so for many years to come.