IFA trends: Ultra hi-res, Smart, and OLED TVs
Ultra hi-res TVs, Smart TVs, and OLED TVs are expected to be among the hottest trends in home entertainment tech at this year's IFA in Berlin, which runs from August 31- September 5.
IFA is one of the biggest consumer tech trade shows in the world, attracting around 1,440 exhibitors and 238,000 visitors in 2011, generating 3.7 billion euros worth of orders. The show is often used as a product launchpad for big-name manufacturers and is a barometer of consumer tech trends for the coming year.
This year some of the hottest trends in TV tech at IFA are expected to be ultra-high resolution TVs, OLEDs, ease of operation, 3D viewing and Smart TVs.
Ultra-high resolution TVs
One of the biggest buzzes in consumer electronics at this year's IFA is 4K TVs. 4K TVs have a resolution of up to 4096 x 2160 pixels, equivalent to over eight megapixels, and over four times the resolution of currently available HD, giving the viewer crystal clear images. 4K TVs would also, theoretically, make it possible to build 3D TVs that produce images in full HD even when viewed with passive glasses. Despite the fact that there are no 4K broadcasts on the horizon just yet, this technology could contribute to further improving the image quality of large-scale screens. LG is expected to showcase a 4K TV at this year's event, with possible products also coming from Sony and Toshiba.
Another emerging trend in TVs at this year's IFA is that of Organic Light-Emitting Diodes (OELDs) in flat-screen TVs. These OLED displays require no additional light source and produce high-quality images in comparison to conventional LCDs. Additionally whereas LCDs require the use of color filters, OELD pixels emit colored light, therefore giving sharper images. Samsung is one of the main manufacturers rumored to be launching OELD TVs at IFA this year.
With the continuing development of 3D technology, one of the trends at this year's IFA is going to be in the field of 3D glasses. Spectacles for 3D viewing are now becoming lighter and more stylish and can be worn with normal glasses.
Ease of operation
New operating concepts are one of this year's biggest TV tech and home entertainment trends. While many TVs can already be operated via a tablet or smartphone, this year will see some of the first voice- and gesture-operated TVs coming onto the market in an attempt to simplify usage of increasing complex home entertainment systems.
Smart TVs have been a growing trend for a while now with companies such as Google and Apple diving into the market. These TVs are capable of browsing the web, running apps, cloud-based game play and social networking among other things. With around six million internet-capable TVs sold in 2011 the convergence between internet and TV is expected to become an even more dominant trend in 2012. Samsung plans to show off its Smart TVs running Angry Birds at the event.