You might watch movies on your laptop and play video games on your television, so it stands to reason that your TV can double as a professional display, right? WRONG! While they look similar, they serve very different purposes.

Differences Between Monitors and TVs

Most commercial displays can be scheduled, and that automation reduces the need for human intervention. Using the display’s schedules ensures that your signage is actually turned on rather than leaving it to someone to remember each day. In addition, you’ll soon find out why leaving a television on as a display for days on end is not a safe idea!


Most people purchase a television for occasional use, from a couple hours a day to a few times per week. Professional displays are used to display digital content in high traffic areas, or to provide interactive information in an office setting.


The brightness of a display ranges from between 350 to 700 cd/m² to outshines ambient lighting and draw the eye to it. Televisions offer a brightness of 350 cd/m² or less.


Televisions usually have simple input options, such as HDMI and cable. Displays have advanced input systems, including integration with PC, standard RS232 external control/ connector, PC and video loop-through connector capability, multiple display configurations, and industrial BNC locking connectors.

Cooling System

Professional displays are designed to withstand long operating hours with heat dissipation built into the inner structure. In both portrait and landscape modes, displays incorporate additional fans to dissipate heat and prevent damage or overheating. Televisions are not made for extended use and don’t have the same system.

Image Retention

Image retention (or burn in) occurs when an image is imprinted on screen after being displayed for an extended period of time. Once this occurs, the imprinted image will appear as a faint remnant, visible through the new content. Professional displays have the technology to prevent image retention, even with prolonged use.

Better Options

Now that you know the differences between monitors and TVs, you can make the right decision for your business. A commercial display is a professional grade monitor used for displaying high-resolution content in a commercial environment. Skimping on the real thing can lead to being stuck with an overheating TV that can’t integrate with your office technology and will likely lead to delays and problems.

Contact Us to learn more about how an interactive display can give your business the edge it needs.