Sunday, January 16, 2011

How Future TV may look!

High-definition had a long road to fruition, coming into its own only after content that took advantage of crisper resolutions reached critical mass.

Samsung, LG and Panasonic are all set to offer third-party applications on their televisions, similar to those consumers use on phones and tablets. With so many electronics makers vying to differentiate themselves, none has yet come out as a clear leader, and several are in any case hard-pressed to make profits off televisions.

But many say ease of use will be key to promoting take-up. Sony offers a keyboard interface for its Google TV, but smartphones and tablets are hot contenders to become the new, and hopefully more intuitive, TV remote.

"People are overwhelmed by technology," said Joe Taylor, CEO of Panasonic's North America unit, which showed a tablet-style remote for its Viera Connect smart TVs at CES.

"Essentially, we want to make an intuitive device. A 70-year-old could figure out how to use it without looking at an operating guide," he said. Microsoft showed how TVs could be controlled with an LG Windows smartphone, by swiping and tilting the device to control what is shown on the big screen. Other, even more futuristic technologies are being put forward as ways for people to control their TVs, with Microsoft and Toshiba showing off hand-signal and voice-command systems.

For those who are not looking to replace their televisions, Blu-ray players from some makers are also beginning to add "smart" features, or there are separate accessories from Apple and Logitech. Another less expensive option could be a new phone from Sony Ericsson, the Experia Arc, which can be simply plugged into the TV's HDMI port, using a cellular or Wi-Fi connection to deliver content such as YouTube videos to the TV.

"Its not a full blown Google TV but it does give you access to your email and content like YouTube," said Peter Farmer, head of marketing for North America.