Capterra Event Management Software Blog

Technology and software resources for event planning pros.

7 Free and Open-Source Digital Signage Software Options For Your Next Event

Share This Article

In the era of everything going digital, it should come as no surprise that advertising, including traditional signs and billboards, is eager to get in on the action.

Free Digital Signage Software

As the use of physical advertising continues to taper off, digital signage is rising, and, according to Digital Signage Today, this is due to three benefits not offered by static signage:

  1. Flexibility

Digital signage provides advertisers with new ways to deliver their content, including video content. Advertising is a fast-paced industry, and, when new trends come along, digital signage allows for a faster transition than traditional signs.

  1. Big Data

It’s difficult to collect data on physical signs due their static and uninteractive nature. Digital signage provides new opportunities to collect data on consumers and the effectiveness of your messages, especially when the signage is interactive.

  1. Return on Investment

The two reasons listed above are indicative of the robust return on investment you can achieve by adopting digital signage. The long term cost savings of digital advertising over physical, the fast turnaround of adjusting messaging, and the data provided by digital signage makes for a higher ROI over traditional signage.

After adopting new event management software, it is time for your signage to take the next step into the 21st century. But does your first system have to cost you?

Free Digital Software Options

Perhaps you aren’t yet sold on the effectiveness of digital signage. I don’t blame you if you’re cautious about making a transition. This is why I compiled a list of seven free, digital signage software options for you to explore and try before you commit to a paid system.

Many of the systems listed are open-source systems and all are free.

(Software options are listed in alphabetical order)

1. Concerto

Concerto is an open-source, digital signage software available as a downloadable solution. Created in 2008, Concerto is under constant development by its team from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI).  

While this software was originally developed for students and college campuses, Concerto works well for small businesses and organizations. I suggest this software to small business due to the fact that it is open-source.

To run Concerto, you will need a web server capable of running Ruby on Rails (ROR) applications as well as a database. This software strikes me as one which requires more technical knowledge than the average digital signage software. If you are looking for a technical challenge as well as a free and open-source software solution, Concerto may be the choice for you.

Concerto is an APT-based Linux system, which is also able to run on Windows and MacOS with the use of a virtual machine.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

2. DigitalSignage.com

Digital Signage offers free and enterprise versions of its software. The free version of has all the core features of the software, including access to its SignageStudio, SignagePlayer, remote management, and hundreds of premade templates.

Despite being an open-source digital signage software, access to the application programming interface (API) is only given to enterprise subscribers. You won’t be able to make any alterations to Digital Signage’s source code, unless you buy the enterprise version.

Another significant limit placed on the free version is a one gigabyte limit on cloud storage. This makes Digital Signage’s software a better choice for small events with limited need for digital sign advertising.

Digital Signage is available on Windows, MacOS, and Linux/Ubuntu systems.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

3. Mango Signs

Mango Signs is a solid starter option for event managers exploring digital signage software. Its free option allows you to advertise on one sign at a time, with one user login, and three slides per sign. Outside of those limitations, Mango Signs has many of the basic features you would expect from a digital signage system, such as animated content, content templates, and a sign editor tool.

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to remove the Mango Signs logo without upgrading to a paid option. Its free system also lacks any live support, social media integration, or Google Analytics integration.

So as long as your event isn’t depending on signage data and you feel as though you are tech savvy enough to get by without support, Mango Signs is a good software to learn the ropes of digital signage software.

Mango Signs is available on Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS.

Capterra User Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

4. ScreenHub

ScreenHub brands itself as the “all-in-one” free digital signage software, complete with content design, management, and player features. As web-based software, ScreenHub allows you to control your digital signs from anywhere, so long as you have an internet connected device, including laptops, desktops, and mobile devices.

While some digital signage software options recommend specific display types, ScreenHub claims its system is able to adjust to any display size.

One question left unanswered by ScreenHub’s website is the amount of cloud storage given to each user. If you plan on advertising many events each year, you would be wise to inquire on cloud storage before committing to this software.

ScreenHub is available on Windows, MacOS, Linux/Ubuntu, Android, and iOS.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

5. Screenly Open-Source Edition

Screenly Open-Source Edition is the free version of the paid Screenly digital signage software, which is developed and backed by the user community and maintained by WireLoad.

Unlike some open-source software options, Screenly is geared towards code-savvy users. This is either a feature or a hassle depending on the user. Those with programming skills will have the ability to set up their system and adjust the source code based on their specific needs. On the other hand, less experienced users may have a hard time setting up such a system, let alone modifying it.

Screenly’s display player runs solely through Raspberry Pi devices. These computers are small, single board devices used for many offshoot computing tasks. In this case, Raspberry Pi computers are used to host the digital signage player and broadcast to displays.

Screenly’s digital signage software supports three types of media: videos, images, and web pages.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

6. ViewNeo

ViewNeo is another web-based digital signage software that offers a free starter tier and the option to upgrade to more robust systems. Right off the bat, the clean user-interface of ViewNeo caught my eye, as well as its modern signage templates. This user-interface reminded me of other high quality online design websites, such as Canva.

Of course, as a free software option, there are some limitations to certain features. As a web-based software, ViewNeo only offers 5 GB of free cloud storage. Obviously, this rules out any massive event management projects, which require multiple digital signage campaigns. Speaking of multiple campaigns, the free tier of ViewNeo also restricts user control to only one display at a time.

ViewNeo is available on Windows, MacOS, and Linux/Ubuntu for desktops, as well as iOS and Android for mobile.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

7. Xibo

Xibo is not the most visually appealing digital signage software, but if you can overcome the looks, this software has a lot going on under the hood. Xibo is a fully-stocked, open-source content management system made for digital signage, including layout design features, scheduling, display management, analytics reporting, support for most media file types, and user permissions.

Xibo began as a university project in 2004 and since then has been supported and developed by Spring Signage. Since its launch, it’s also developed cloud-based versions as well as app access with Android phones. So whether your event management business or department prefers on-site software or cloud-based, Xibo has plenty to offer.

In order to make additions to the source code, you can find all contributions and access on the GitHub page.

Xibo’s content management system is available on Windows, MacOS, or Linux/Ubuntu, however its player software, which is connected to displays, is only available for Windows or Android.

Capterra User Rating: Not Available

Looking for other new ways to upgrade your events?

Not only is your signage getting an upgrade, but there are plenty of other technological advances in the world of event management. The Capterra event management blog is full of tips, news, and lists of event technology and software.

Be sure to check out these other pieces geared towards bringing your events up to speed:

Have you adopted digital signage technology for your events? What worked for you? What could be improved? Let me know in the comments below!

Looking for Event Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Event Management software solutions.

Share This Article

About the Author

Nick Morpus

Follow on

Nick Morpus is a Content Writer for Capterra, a free resource that matches buyers and sellers of business software. He has a background in politics, economics, and journalism, which he dedicates his off-time to contributing his thoughts to other political sites. In his free-time he enjoys reading, drawing, photography, playing guitar, writing, and cooking.

Comments

No comments yet. Be the first!

Comment on this article:


Your privacy is important to us. Check out our Privacy Policy.