Digital Price Tags using Custom Segmented LCD Displays
We were contacted by an automobile dealer to see if it was possible to replace their paper price tags with a digital price tag that incorporates a custom segmented LCD display. They liked the idea of a module that can display multiple pieces of information such as: price, model number, year and other data.
The concept of moving prices from printed, static paper to a dynamic, changing LCD module has become common in grocery and department stores; so why not try it on automobile lots?
Advantages of custom segmented LCD displays as electronic price tags
Advantages of an electronic price tag versus a paper price tag
- Custom LCD screens look more professional than paper price tags and increase the perceived value of the product. Using a paper price tag to sell a twenty-five cent piece of fruit might not make a difference since the dollar amount is so small, but when offering a high-end, expensive product such as a full size truck, RV or boat. The difference may be all that is necessary to close the sale.
- 7 segment LCD numbers and icons can change and catch the attention of the consumer. People’s eyes are pulled towards movement. How many times have you walked past a grocery store display where a video is demonstrating a new furniture polish? Did you stop long enough to watch the fifteen second commercial? Did you purchase the product?
- The custom LCD screen can provide a great deal of information to the potential customer including: Kelly-blue-book®, millage, warranty, carfax®. The tooling fee would be low enough to allow each car dealer to create their own custom display.
Choosing the best LCD display technology as a price tag
Let’s start by selecting the best LCD display technology for use as a price tag. The two recommended types of displays would be:
- Custom segmented LCD display
- Zero power displays (aka: bi-stable LCD)
We disqualified other LCD modules such as TFT and OLED due to their high power requirements and their high tooling cost to customize.
Technical Challenges of a digit price tag
In part two of this article we will address the technical challenges faced when designing a digital price tag for outdoor use.
Ready to start your custom LCD price tag design?