TV Makers Talk Features, Future at CE Week
The CE Week Conference/Exhibits Show provided some key TV marketers with the forum to offer their takes on the progress of technologies. They also opined about what consumer aspirations will be on the retail sales floor, in this crucial period marking the beginning of what all seem to feel will be a large flat-screen replacement cycle.
Steve Panosian, Samsung’s director of marketing, flat-panel HDTV products, said his company is “bullish on 4K. We project 4.5 million unit sales [for the market overall] in 2015 – a 4.5-times growth over 2014.” Underscoring the degree to which Samsung is Ultra HD 4K-committed, he said that this year, it comprises half of the company’s 70-model LCD/LED TV lineup. Samsung’s premium UHD experience is provided by the new SUHD sets, which he said offer a brighter experience and use advanced dimming and Nano Crystal technology.
Philip Jones, Sony’s manager of product technology and training, emphasized Sony’s stem-to-stern involvement in 4K technology hardware and content development. “We’re lens to living room,” he said, adding that “having a wide color gamut isn’t enough – it’s knowing how to use it – assembling the ingredients. There’s more to good HDR (High Dynamic Range) than just brightness. Are you buying a TV or a flashlight?”
Tim Alessi, LG’s director of new product development, pointed to his company’s commitment to Ultra HD 4K OLED technology, as the sole consumer-market standard-bearer at present.
“If we have to carry the ball alone, we will. We’re doing an expansion from two to seven models this year. We believe in the technology. . . Since we’re the only company offering OLED, it’s incumbent on us to educate the consumer on the ABCs of OLED: perfect Angle, perfect Black, perfect Color – and D – perfect Design.” He also said LG’s latest iteration of its webOS 2.0 operating system has been well received by the market and has “helped to bring OTT (Over The Top) content to the same level as linear content.”
Jones and Panosian both justified their companies’ adherence to Ultra HD 4K LED since, in the words of Panosian, “the consumer has voted for the technology.” Panosian added that Samsung “has plenty of other TV options and we’ll implement them when the time is right.” Jones said that while Sony is involved in OLED technology development on the professional side, and “is continuing to evaluate” the consumer market, “right now, 4K LCD TV offers more advantages.”
“We’ve heard a lot today about how brightness isn’t everything. [Ultra HD 4K] OLED offers all LCD does, and more,” Alessi said.