Samsung’s Second-Half 3D, Connected-TV Intros, Strategies
Samsung has revealed second-half product introduction and promotion plans for its 3D and connected-TV product categories that include release in Q3 of what it said will be the world’s largest 3D LED TV for the home – the 65-inch UN65C8000 ($5,999.99) – and it also formally unwrapped the world’s first 3D-capable Blu-ray portable player (BD-C800; $499.99).
The 65-inch set will feature a 240 Hz screen refresh rate and Samsung’s new Precision Dimming feature. It is being joined at retail by three new 3D-capable plasma TVs: 58- and 50-inch models in the C680 series and a 50-inch set in the C490 series that carries an estimated selling price of $1,099.99. Three other 3D-capable Blu-ray players were released along with the portable, which carries a 10.3-inch screen, is Wi-Fi-capable, and has a battery life of three hours.
The company is also making its Web applications kit available to outside developers, expecting that it can double the number of apps accessible on its Web-connected, or “smart,” TVs to 200 by year’s end, said Tim Baxter, president of Samsung Electronics America.
Baxter said that the U.S. market for smart TVs should reach 6.5 million units this year – 20 percent of all TVs sold – and that Samsung would take a 60 percent market share in the category. “Since March,” he stated, “Samsung application activation has reached 50 percent in TVs and Blu-ray players, with nearly 100 applications available today” – a figure the company hopes will be bolstered with the kickoff of its “Free the TV Challenge.”
The contest offers a total of $500,000 in prizes to app developers who may download the Samsung SDK kit, which uses an open-standard Web platform, from a special Web site. It closes in mid-November, and the winners will be announced at the 2011 International CES.