Following LG and Sony into the growing supersized TV market, Samsung claims its 85-inch UHDTV will be the world's largest commercially available screen to use the technology when it goes on display in Las Vegas in January 2013 at the annual Consumer Electronics Show
LG's 84-inch 4K Ultra Definition 3D TV. Photo: AFP
Although the company isn't releasing any detailed technical specifications, it has revealed that the screen will incorporate over 8 million pixels and will use an enhanced dimming technology to ensure the best possible contrasts.
At over 2.1 meters from corner to corner, Samsung's TV is so far the biggest but it is by no means the first UHDTV to pass the 80-inch threshold. LG's 84-inch UHDTV, the 84LM9600, went on sale in the US in October and both Sony and Toshiba are planning to release 84-inch TVs based on the same technology.
UHD or ultra-high definition TVs are so called because they boast four times the pixels and therefore definition of current high-definition televisions, although they still use the same LCD technology in the display's production. And while the TVs are backwards compatible with existing broadcaster and video quality, at the moment there is very little UHD standard media content available to early adopters. There is also the issue that many people don't currently have 2 meters of available wall space in their homes or apartments to house such an enormous screen.
Another problem facing potential customers is whether to buy one now or wait until 2013 when OLED TVs (a competing technology that offers even greater clarity, contrast and definition) come to market. Based on the same technology found in high-defintion smartphone and tablet displays, OLED screens don't require a separate light source as each pixel is self-illuminating. This results in incredibly subtle and detailed differences in color, detail and contrast that traditional LCD screens -- HD or UHD -- cannot match. However, manufacturers are struggling to transfer the technology from the traditional 5-inch screen found in smartphone screens and scale it up to the 55- and even 85-inch level of UHDTVs.
CES takes place January 8-11, 2013.