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LG Electronics grabbed headlines when it announced its 55-inch curved OLED HDTV in 2013, which originally sported a $14,999 retail price tag. Early into 2014, LG decided to issue yet another price cut so the TV can be found for $6,999 at major North American electronics e-tailers.
Prior to the 2013 Christmas holiday shopping season, LG cut the TV's retail price from $14,999 down to $8,999 to draw interested buyers with deep pockets. It's no surprise to see the price drop even lower in early 2014, but seeing it slide down to $6,999 in such a short amount of time may be all that is needed to entice some consumers to pull the trigger.
LG's price cut will also make it more competitive with Samsung's rival OLED HDTV that started with a price tag of $8,999.
Digital stores saw great success in 2013, and the digital storefront also reached bigger high-definition screens with increased resolutions. Stores are able to broadcast dynamic digital content, including mall maps, in-store coupons and promotions, and customer potentials.
This so-called "hybrid shopping concept" is popping up in higher-end retailers and shopping malls, and is becoming more affordable, but a recent blog posted on Forrester revealed a few additional details. Digital storefronts were not disruptive, guests were able to interact with the digital storefront but didn't seem interested to engage product brands.
The Westfield San Francisco Centre shopping mall, located in downtown San Francisco on Market Street, teamed up with eBay to unveil a large digital storefront (image in story). Visitors tend to be interested in anything tech-related in San Francisco, so it's possible digital storefronts can be successful in select markets.
Just a few hours away from the Super Bowl between the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, TV viewers will have the ability to watch the game in standard definition, high-definition, and ultra-HD (4K). FOX Sports will use six Sony 4K cameras to broadcast the game in UHD, utilizing five F55 and one F65 cameras, which will be used for the FOX "Super Zoom" technology.
The cameras will be position down each sideline and in both end zones, along with one located above the field, providing overall field video.
"It's all about the clarity of the replay and giving viewers the best possible look at a play, and that's what we can do with these cameras," said Jerry Steinberg, FOX Sports SVP of Technical Operations, in a statement. "Since we're starting with such a high-resolution image, we can zoom in multiple times on a shot and still get a completely clear picture with zero pixel degradation. You see everything in extreme detail, in fact with an extra amount of detail you wouldn't see in a traditional replay."
Traditional HD became popular among TV viewers largely because of the NFL and other professional sports events - and UHD should also likely follow the same path to success.
Just four days away from Super Bowl XLVIII, to be contested on Sunday between the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, leads to retailers providing good deals on high-definition TVs. Wal-Mart, Target, and other brick and mortar retailers have in-store ads, while online e-tailers also have a variety of different sales available.
The Vizio 60" E-Series is available from Best Buy and Target for $800, for example, while Sears has a 50" ST60 plasma 3D for $1,000. Other similar deals are available through popular B&M retailers and online, so consumers should be able to find the deals they are looking for prior to Sunday.
Samsung has confirmed it is working on a new AMOLED QHD (2560x1440) smartphone panel, according to Korean media, was announced during the Semiconductor and Display Technology Roadmap Seminar.
Better yet, we don't even have this new QHD panel in devices yet, but the South Korean giant also revealed it is working on a new AMOLED UHD panel - yes, Ultra HD, or 3840x2160. 4K displays, on smartphones. If a 4K display was baked into a 5-inch display, we would be greeted with a Retina busting 820 pixels per inch (PPI).
We should be expecting Samsung to unveil its Galaxy S5 soon, which should feature the new AMOLED QHD panel.
It looks like AMD is preparing an impressive "native" 16-core processor, with all sixteen cores sitting on the same die. This technology will reportedly surface sometime after 2015.
All of this will begin in AMD's server processor range, with its multi-core Opteron processors for high-end servers using multi-chip-module (MCM) technology. These chips use two six- or eight-core dies onto the same piece of substrate to create a 12- or 16-core solution. This tech will roll down to the consumer side of things, where we should expect a new 16-core processor from the chipmaker sometime in 2015-2016.
As this year continues, AMD will release an Opteron processor codenamed "Warsaw". Warsaw will feature 12 or 16 cores on AMD's Piledriver architecture, and should arrive toward late 2015. The company should also be capable of making a 32-core, multi-chip-module for high-end servers by slapping together two 16-core dies onto a single substrate. 32 cores aren't far away!
CBS plans to use six Ultra High Definition (UHD) cameras to broadcast Super Bowl XLVII, able to capture video up to 500 frames per second, providing a very clear, HD picture.
During the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) earlier this year, many high-definition TV manufacturers showed off UHD providing a whopping 3840x2160 resolution to TV viewers.
"We're using an unprecedented array of technology," said Ken Aagard, CBS Executive VP of operations, in a statement. "This year, we'll be using an innovative native 4K camera replay system we're calling 'Heyeper Zoom,' and given the right moment, we're hoping we can show something that will be really special."
Professional sports were credited with helping usher in the HD craze years ago - and the Super Bowl and other events could help push 4K - or 8K technology - into the forefront. UHD technology remains extremely expensive, and only a small number of consumers will watch the Super Bowl next month in 4K, but look out for sudden TV purchases in the January-February time frame in the years to come.
Broadcasters plan to show the 2014 World Cup in 4K UHD as well, setting the bar for future HD broadcasts.
Consumers searching for high-definition TVs have a lot of affordable choices to choose from, though organic LED (OLED) technology will still take a few more years of development for prices to drop. The technology has looked quite impressive due to a higher resolution and is brighter than rival TV formats, but the technology is still too expensive to roll out in mass production.
"I'm really, really terribly sorry to say this, but it will take more time... I believe it will take around three to four years," said HS Kim, Samsung VP for visual display, during a recent interview.
During the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), HDTV and 3DTV technologies were on full display all over the Las Vegas Strip. Many companies demoed impressive OLED technology, but most product launch dates and price tags will keep casual customers thinking of other options. However, as Kim predicts, a lower price tag and further technology advancements over the coming years will help drive demand in the future.
Meanwhile, Kim also has full faith in the ultra-HD format and believes 4K TV adoption will happen quicker than we think.
4K was a huge draw card to this year's Consumer Electronics Show, and one of the company's standing proud with Ultra HD was Samsung. The South Korean giant is confident in the high-resolution TV business.
The executive vice president of the company's visual display business, HS Kim, has said that pricing on 4K TVs will drop, and consumer adoption will rise much quicker than we think. This time last year, Samsung had three 4K TVs, but now the electronics giant has 10 models ranging from 50 inches, to an insane 110 inches.
Industry experts estimate that we will see under 500,000 4K sets sold this year, versus just 60,000 last year. Kim noted that the TV upgrade cycle is around six years right now, but his company wants to bring more value to its TVs, so that consumers will be tempted to replace them every 4-5 years instead.
CES 2014 - Even though I wasn't at CES 2014, I kept in touch with DisplayLink's Director of Marketing, Andy Davis, all the way from my house in Australia, where he bought me up to speed on some of the technologies his company was showing off at CES 2014.
One of the more important things Displaylink showed off was its new DL-3950 USB 3.0 docking chipset. The new chipset contains fully integrated dual-head video, which can support two full 2560x1600 displays. Not only that, but we also have Gigabit Ethernet, 5.1-channel sound, and DisplayLink's magic: dynamic compression.
DisplayLink also unveiled its new DL-5000 family of chips, with the DL-5500 launching at CES 2014. The DL-5500 allows users with existing DisplayLink-enabled setups to add a 4K monitor to their setup. This helps immensely going into the future, with 4K being a massive dot point of this year's CES. DisplayLink can run this technology over USB 2.0, which goes to show just how impressive its technology really is.