More on TV from CES 2012
January 24, 2012
This year’s Consumer Electronics Show was dominated by developments and updates in TV. This week we’re looking at the highlights from the show:
3-D Without Glasses: Toshiba & Sony were displaying 3-D HDTV panels that didn’t require glasses of any kind. The problem with glasses-free 3-D demonstrations at past CES shows was that they required viewers to stand at a very precise distance & angle from the screen. Toshiba’s attempted improvement used numerous tiny lenses on a 55” panel to aim the 2 different 1270x720 HD images required for 3-D in slightly different directions, creating 9 different possible viewing regions. Face-tracking software then allows the device to
detect the viewer’s position to best control the picture, depending on who is watching at any one time. Sony had a 46” panel using a different technology, but neither system looked very good to me, since the full 3-D effect was only available in specific & limited regions from the screens, while requiring no head movement whatsoever to maintain stable dimensionality. This is an area with obvious potential, but it still requires much more development work.
Connected TV: Most other television manufacturers highlighted the internet-surfing capability of their latest sets, with Samsung & LG joining Sony & Vizio in offering Google TV. Though not new, an October revision of the Google TV software has made the system more user-friendly, now utilizing a special version of the Android mobile platform running a customized Chrome browser. LG’s version, with a controller consisting of a full keyboard on one side & a simplified remote on the other side, seemed particularly easy to use & should be on sale by early March.