In the synchronized clock industry, there are a lot of options to choose from if you’re considering a build out or upgrade to your facility. Think about clocks from the schools you went to as a kid: they were most likely wired, received an accurate time signal from a master clock, and were in-sync with a bell system for class changes. That may be the most common time system we can think of, but the technology and methods by which we keep time are changing. It may be time to re-think the traditional clock network, with Wi-Fi leading the way.
Let’s start with some options for Wi-Fi clocks: those that plug into a 110 or 24 VAC outlet. By using a planned, electrical infrastructure, you can say goodbye to batteries and the need to replace them when they die. The trade-off is you give up the mobility of a battery-operated Wi-Fi clock. Electric Wi-Fi clocks connect through a Molex® connection or by plugging a power cord into an outlet. In either case, you don’t need a master clock to control your Wi-Fi clocks. Use your existing 802.11n/b/g wireless network to receive an exact time signal from a server – thereby eliminating the cost of a master clock and an administrator to make sure it’s functioning correctly.
Digital Wi-Fi Clocks Show Off
Another traditional feature we may think of is the moving hands of a clock. Well, think again: digital Wi-Fi clocks are an excellent option, when considering readability over longer distances or in low-light areas. These clocks receive accurate time from your server, just like their analog counterparts, ensuring accuracy across the network. That’s the reliability that synchronized clocks are famous for. But with digital readouts, these clocks can make accurate time known for more people at greater distances.
Digital clocks come with 2.5-inch and 4-inch, LED digits, which make accurate time easily visible, even in low light. Because these clocks are easily readable, you may need fewer of them to project time in larger rooms. For instance, think of a large school cafeteria: you may see up to four or five analog clocks at strategic locations such as the exits or lunch line. With Wi-Fi digital clocks, you may be able to cut costs, or offset them by placing one, large, 2-sided digital clock in the middle of a room. Depending on location, it could be better visibility to more people at greater distances and, you can take advantage of the count up/down feature of a digital clock. These Wi-Fi digital clocks can also be used as an elapsed time indicator, an important feature for the healthcare industry.
One last thing I’d like to note about Wi-Fi clocks: they are pretty independent. Without the requirement of a master, they are ideal for small office spaces with Wi-Fi, which may only need a dozen clocks. Or, you could even add them to an environment of traditional synchronized clocks, as long as you have the 110/24 VAC plug outlet and a Wi-Fi signal.