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Samsung says make room for giant TVs

By John Buckley

Published: 8:50AM Thursday February 28, 2013 Source: ONE News

  • A woman checks the sign below Samsung's new 85" television in Jakarta (Source: Supplied)
    A woman checks the sign below Samsung's new 85" television in Jakarta - Source: Supplied

Kiwis should prepare their lounges for a new age of giant TVs if Samsung's expansion plans are anything to go by.

Speaking at the South East Asia regional forum in Jakarta, president and CEO of Samsung Asia, Gregory Lee, picked ultra high definition TVs, which are several times larger and clearer than standard flat-panel televisions, as the next big trend for Kiwi homes.

Speaking to TVNZ, Lee said that compared to other countries in the region, we have relatively high incomes and larger homes. That means we are ideally suited to take advantage of the upcoming super-sized technologies.

Asked to detail his vision of the future, Lee spoke of the ubiquity of smart appliances that can in effect communicate with each other.

Within a couple of years we will be able to check up on our washing machines from our smartphones while at work and ask the machine to give that stubborn wash another cycle before we get home.

While that vision of the future may appear mundane, the Korean giant also has its sights set on loftier goals.

In 2012 it leapt eight spots in Interbrands rankings to become the ninth best global brand. They aim to reach the top five in the coming year, rubbing shoulders with their great rival Apple and global super-brand Coca-Cola, among others.

Another target is to grow their share of revenue from big business. While less than 5% of current revenue comes from selling technology to enterprise, their goal is to make that 20% by 2020.

The Jakarta forum, attended by 150 media representatives, is Samsung's opportunity to set out its stall for the coming year.

As well as large scale TVs, the assembled tech journalists were also treated to a wide range of technologies, from cameras and tablets, to smartphones and fridges. So based on the forum, what technology can Kiwis expect to see in their homes this year?

The 85" Ultra High Definition model might have been the flagship product, but a whole new range of smart, voice activated TVs were also shown. Samsung also made good on last year's promise to purchasers of Smart TVs to keep their technology current. They showed the 2013 Evolution Kit, a small box which locks into the 2012 Smart TV and instantly upgrades it with 2013 software.

The hot release is the Galaxy Camera wifi edition. This camera foregoes the 3G connection of its predecessor but still features wifi, allowing users to share, email and backup their photos without needing to connect it by a wire to a computer.

It wouldn't be a Samsung press launch without a new tablet. Flying the flag for slim devices was the Galaxy Note 8.0. This machine could be viewed as the Swiss Army Knife of tablets. It's eight inch form factor makes it an ideal device to use as either a tablet, a notepad, a diary or an e-book reader.

No local prices were revealed at the forum, but one suspects that if you have to ask the price of the 85" TV, you might not be in the target market for it.