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Samsung places bet on new smart TVs

Earlier this month, Samsung held an event in New York City to show its new line of 2012 televisions, which are set to begin shipping by the summer. Not only are these not your grandfather’s television sets, they resemble computers more than any previous Samsung television sets to date.

It’s a clear sign that television sets are finally being reinvented in the era of the Internet. With new competition from Apple and other computer makers, Samsung is placing a big bet with its fifth generation smart television sets.

The LED and Plasma 6-series offers improved picture quality with features like Micro Dimming Ultimate and Real Black Pro technology. The sets have a dual-core CPU for quick app launching and task switching, an integrated camera and noise-canceling microphone, voice and gesture control and face recognition.

The new sets offer Smart Evolution, a new technology to help TV owners to stay up-to-date with the latest software. AllShare Play offers seamless connectivity to other devices and to cloud storage. The new sets also come with a smart touch remote and an optional smart wireless keyboard, along with a new browser based on the Webkit engine. Also included is a roster of exclusive signature services.

“Our goal with this year’s models was to truly redefine what a TV can be while providing unprecedented choice to the consumer,” said Joe Stinziano, senior vice president at Samsung’s Home Entertainment division. “We have delivered the incredible picture quality and beautiful design that consumers have come to expect from Samsung, as well as seamless connectivity, several new ways to control the TV and exclusive services.”

Voice and gesture control are available on the LED ES7500, LED ES8000 and Plasma E8000 models. For example, you can say, “web browser” to get online, use voice recognition to start a search, and wave a hand to control the mouse cursor and select links. Face recognition allows each member of the family log in to their Samsung account and automatically sign into FaceBook and Twitter.

Micro Dimming contrast enhancement will be extended to significantly more LED models this year, beginning with the LED ES6600. Micro Dimming Pro adds color and detail enhancements to the LED ES7500 for better color and sharper detail.

Micro Dimming Ultimate, available on the LED ES8000, analyzes the picture in hundreds of pieces to optimize the LED backlight and video signal for each piece in real time. This leads to a noticeable increase in brightness, better colors and higher contrast ratio.

With Remote Play, content can be seamlessly shared between supported mobile devices, PCs and a Samsung Smart TV—whether they are in the same room or on opposite sides of the world.

Consumers will also have access to 5 GB of free cloud-based storage for images and videos, accessible through compatible Samsung Smart TVs, PCs and mobile devices.