Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Roku To Release Six Televisions Later This Year


The mammoth 105-inch 105UC9 will feature 4K compatibility and an unusual 21:9 aspect ratio (Credit: LG) LG has announced its full lineup of 4K televisions for 2014 with 12 models including a monster 105-inch LCD and two curved OLED series. The lineup includes the two OLEDs -- the EC9700 and EC9800 -- and three series of LCD -- the UB9800, UB9500, and UB8500-making it one of the largest offerings of Ultra HD displays yet. LG says the TVs will include the latest standards for connectivity (though it isn't yet explicit we hope this means HDMI 2.0 ) and the company's advancements with Smart TV. Related stories: Why Ultra HD 4K TVs are still stupid The 105-inch 105UC9 is a 21:9 television along the lines of the Vizio CinemaWide XVT3D580CM from 2012. Like that TV it appears that the UC9 will enable side-by-side viewing on 16:9 content -- effectively replacing the vertical black bars.


While it is certainly true that Input 1 on any television is the most coveted of all positions for any content supplier, over the past couple of years there has been a new position that is almost as good. If you can embed your content into the television itself, you know that you are always going to be there for your users to see. Roku has led the inexpensive STB industry for quite a while now with an incredibly simple philosophy. They make things super simple for their users, and they keep their costs down. The first part has been an incredible success, but the second part is now something anyone can do, as was demonstrated late last year with the Google Chromecast . Roku is partnering with Hisense and TCL, among others that have yet to be announced, in order to release a series of televisions ranging from 32-55 inches.


The digital switchover and advances in technology have enabled millions to now watch television online and via tablets or smartphones. But 48 years after the start of colour TV transmissions the age of black and white is not quite dead. A salute to Zulu: A spell binding story of raw courage with NO gore, NO political correctness and NO swaggering Yanksa great British war film on its 50th anniversary Iain Logie Baird, Associate Curator at the National Media Museum, Bradford, and grandson of television inventor John Logie Baird, said: Despite over 25 million people opting for a colour TV Licence in the UK, it may be some time before the black and white television disappears completely from our living rooms. The National Media Museum has hundreds of black and white television sets in its collection and there will always be a small group of people who prefer monochrome images, collect vintage sets or just dont want to throw away a working piece of technology. Classics: Families around the country were entertained by shows such as Dixon of Dock Green, pictured Relics: Ian Logie Baird, whose grandfather invented the television, said that some people will always prefer black and white sets The figures released today by the TV Licensing authority show that London (2,334) has more than four times more black and white sets than anywhere else, followed by Birmingham and Manchester. At the turn of the millennium there were 212,000 black and white licences issued, but by 2003 that number had shrunk to 93,000. Just three years later, in 2006, the number was less than 50,000.


"We are using our unique abilities to bring amazing technology to every part of our lives," said Joseph Taylor, Panasonic's chairman and CEO, while addressing the packed auditorium. One of the main launches was the FZ-M1, a 7-inch 4K "tough pad" designed to meet the rugged specs of the military. The device, according to Rance Poehler, president of Panasonic in North America, will be targeted towards industries that require mobility combined with rough working environments, such as shipping or restaurants. It also introduced a 20-inch 4K tablet with an Intel (i5) processor, which Poehler said has begun to ship. (4K means a device that has a resolution of 4,000 pixels as opposed to the 2,000 pixels of standard high-definition television.) "It is our goal to lead the enterprise market for tablets," he said.


The announcement came on the eve of the formal opening of an international Consumer Electronics Show due to be packed with announcements about vibrant new screens displaying content about four times richer than what is seen on most current high-definition televisions. "We've been on an adventure with LG to create the best possible experiences on the television," Netflix chief executive Reed Hastings said during an appearance on stage at an LG press conference here. "Netflix is proud to stream in real-time shows like 'House of Cards,' filmed in 4K, and will be one of the first major television shows available in 4K." Hastings was referring to the horizontal resolution on the order of 4,000 pixels boasted by new-generation televisions. Current-generation high definition screens, comparatively, have pixel density of 1,080. US-based online television and movie streaming service Netflix began working the LG about five years ago to combine its offerings with the companies products.

Screens offering picture resolution about four times more vivid than current high-definition sets starred at an array of press events staged on the eve of the CES showfloor opening on Tuesday. Japanese entertainment and consumer electronics titan Sony made Ultra HD, also referred to as 4K, sets and matching content the centerpiece of a presentation that ran a gamut of gadgets. "I can't stop talking about 4K," said Sony Electronics chief operating officer Mike Fasulo. "I tell everyone it is like looking out a window." Sony unveiled new cameras for capturing video in 4K as well as screens designed to display the rich footage in all its glory. "But we all know that content is king," Fasulo said. "We have made significant advances there as well." Sony's Video Unlimited service boasts a library of more than 140 titles, including the full catalogue of the hit series "Breaking Bad." Sony is also working with Google-owned YouTube and popular online video streaming service Netflix to feature 4K content on television sets. The Internet is the "natural medium to deliver 4K" shows or films to televisions, Netflix chief executive Reed Hastings said during an appearance at the Sony presentation.


Taylor showed images of a HUD, or heads-up display, that puts critical information for drivers, such as speed and directions, directly in the drivers line of sight. Product range However, even with Panasonics effort to diversify its product range, televisions were still very much a large part of its presentation. The company will launch 58- and 65-inch 4K screens this year, and it will also have a 4K OLED video screen that is 21-feet long on display at the show. Designed to enterprise use, it will have both concave and convex screens. The company will also launch a 4K Varicam, which is a enterprise-level video camera and a line of 4K projectors, which will be available later this year. But the highlight of the television presentation was not the video screen, but Panasonics new Life+ interactive screen, which will come with all of its 4K television in 2014, as well as some of its HD sets. Life+ will allow members of the family to each have their own MyStream accounts, which will be able to provide recommendation based on that persons viewing history.
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