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Sony to release 'mastered in 4K' Blu-ray discs, will launch a 4K digital distribution network this summer
CES 2013 - If there were two words to describe the huge electronics giants at CES 2013, it would be FOUR KAY. Yes, 4K - otherwise known as Ultra HD. Sony are really pushing their 4K goodies at the Consumer Electronics Show 2013 in Las Vegas right now.
They launched their $25,000 84-inch Ultra HD LCD last year, which came with a hard drive solution including preloaded movies. Now those users can download native 4K movies, too. Sony CEO Kaz Hirai has said that "4K is not the future... it's now". Best words, ever. We should expect some new Ultra HD sets, too, with 55- and 65-inch models launching later this year.
Sony are also set to release 'mastered in 4K' Blue-ray discs where they'll be sourced in 1080p from their original 4K masters in high-bitrate which will look amazing when upscaled to 4K. The first movies to be released in this 'mastered in 4K' will be The Amazing Spider-Man, The Karate Kid, Taxi Driver and The Other Guys.
Samsung have unveiled some of their new home theater products ahead of the Consumer Electronics Show 2013 in Las Vegas, included with the announcement is Samsung coming out with what they're claiming to be the world's first sound bar system to sport a vacuum tube. We're also greeted by a new way of Bluetooth for TV audio reproduction, gyros that improve sound quality and finally an all-in-one home theater system that features an amplifier made with Gallium Nitrade.
HW-F750 Vacuum Tube Soundbar
Samsung's HW-F750 Vacuum Tube Soundcar is a sound bar and wireless subwoofer product, and is the South Korean company's latest digital audio product that sports a vacuum tube in the pre-amp stage. Not only does it look great, but it should sound great too. The sound bar will also sport Bluetooth for wireless audio streaming from supported Samsung TVs, and also comes with a built-in gyroscope which is used to help adjust the speakers' sound for optimal results based on the speaker's positioning.
HT-F9750W 7.1 Home Theater System
Samsung's 2013 flagship all-in-one home theater also sports a vacuum tube in the pre-amp stage, as well as an amplifier that is made from Gallium Nitride. The system is capable of some 1330-watts, and its included Blu-ray player is capable of 4K/Ultra HD upscaling and an audio override feature which powers the system up and mutes the Samsung TVs speakers with a single press of a button - simple!
It seems like every one wants a slice of the "Net-TV" pie these days. Sony is rumored to be in the process of setting up its on internet based TV service. Reports are coming in that the company is in "active negation" with at least two content companies.
Other than those tidbits of information, we do not know much else about the venture. Sony is keeping silent on any official details. Rumors are circling that the service could launch as early as fall 2013.
Is Sony looking at this new business model as a way to pull them out of the financial troubles they have faced over the last few years? Personally I think they are just trying to stay competitive in the technology market. With companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple shopping around for internet based TV services, they almost have to work out their own plan.
The new 'jOBS' movie, about former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, is set to arrive in theaters in April, according to the movie's distributors. The premier will take place at the closing night of the Sundance Film Festival, which takes place this month. It's important to note that this is not the film that Sony Pictures is creating.
Directed by Joshua Michael Stern, written by Matthew Whitely, shot by Oscar- winning cinematographer Russell Carpenter and produced by Mark Hulme, jOBS details the major moments and defining characters that influenced Steve Jobs on a daily basis from 1971 through 2000. jOBS plunges into the depths of his character, creating an intense dialogue-driven story that is as much a sweeping epic as it is an immensely personal portrait of Steve Jobs' life. The filmmakers were granted unprecedented access during shooting to the historic garage in Palo Alto, that served as the birthplace to Apple Inc.
Samsung has been teasing us with its Smart TV Evolution kit for a while now and it finally set to be unveiled at the 2013 CES next week.
The hardware kit will plug into the back of compatible Samsung Smart TVs and will effectively turn your 2012 model into something closely resembling a 2013 model.
The Evolution it will upgrade the TV by adding a new CPU, more memory and even GPU upgrades. Personally I have been waiting for something like this for years. To me it only makes sense that we can upgrade our existing TV the same way we can upgrade our PCs.
Intel's big plan to create a Web TV service and set-top box has hit a major bump in the road as it negotiates with media companies for content licenses.
We were hoping for a debut at CES next week but an Intel spokesperson has said that there will be no announcements or product demonstrations at the electronics show this year.
Intel is betting big on this project. Forbes has reported that the company's budget for the project is "significantly larger"� than Apple or Google's own set-top box efforts.
We live in a world where we almost constantly have video games at our fingertips, ready to play at a moments notice. LG's Cinema 3D units already have game apps, but the company feels that games like 2D Angry Birds is just not enough.
LG has announced that in 2013 it will begin adding more featured games such as The Sims Free Play, Air Penguin and Mini Motor Racing (amongst others) that you can control with the Magic Remote.
The above games also been tweaked to offer three-dimensional gaming, and, thanks to the company's FPR 3D tech, two players can battle each other without having to glare at a split screen.
LG's Magic Remote is no doubt, already one cool remote control, and it just got cooler! LG has announced that a new improved version of the Magic Remote will be released at the upcoming CES.
The new version is said to keep all of the features of the current model and adds universal remote functionality, and improved software that adds Natural Language Support.
Natural Language Support allows you to simply speak naturally to control your TV and other devices. Simply speak the name of a channel, program or feature and the remote will do its thing. The actual remote itself has been tweaked with button re-positioning, and on high end models, backlit keys.
Almost everyone owns an HDTV by this point, lets face it, HDTV has become one of those must have things that we can't live without. Those of us who are not satisfied with a plain old run of the mill HDTV will be happy to hear that Sharp will be releasing a monstrous 60" HDTV with 4k resolution in February of 2013.
With a resolution of 3,840,2,160 pixels, it offers much more detail than current HD 1080p TVs and even besets Apple's famed retina displays. First previewed at CES 2012, the 60″ LCD dubbed "Integrated Cognitive Creation," (or by its product number, LC-60HQ10) is sure to wind up in the homes of early adopters world wide.
With a price tag of $31,000 (£19,000), Sharp is building these to order as no doubt it won't be expecting many to be sold. We are predicting that CES 2013 is likely to hold some much more cost effective systems at the same size or larger than this offering from sharp.
Redbox and Verizon are finally ready to launch their long-awaited joint venture dubbed Redbox Instant. The service will move into an invitation-only beta launch later this month with the official push coming sometime next year. Redbox Instant will have a lot of ground to make up if they plan on competing with existing services such as Netflix.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Redbox Instant, the service will offer streaming video, movies on DVD and the ability for its subscribers to purchase movies online similar to how Amazon and iTunes does things. For a small fee of $8 a month you get a selection of streaming movies as well as 4 movie rentals from a Redbox kiosk each month. This subscription also gets you access to the online store where you can purchase or rent newer movies. Redbox Instant will also offer a streaming only package for $6 a month and Blu-ray service is $9 a month.