Is Samsung ahead of the curve when it comes to TV tech?
In delivering the ultimate immersive experience, Samsung is asking customers to not only open their eyes, but open their mind to the endless potential of its curved-screen Ultra HD (UHD) 4K TV.
Standing tall as the only market supplier of curved-screen technology, the tech giant rubbishes claims that the design is merely a cosmetic addition - tempting the doubters to try it for themselves.
“It’s funny how you have the cynics but it’s only when you sit down and experience the Samsung curved-screen UHD TV that you can appreciate it,” says Jon Barrel, Consumer Electronics Director, Samsung New Zealand.
“Curve offers a completely different experience for the customer and the impact of the curve on the picture quality is unrivalled, its an exclusive proposition for UHD.
“If you play the same content through a flat UHD alongside a curve, the whole experience improves.”
Alluding to New Zealand’s growing reputation as being early-adopters of technology, Barrel says Kiwis have been quick to buy into UHD curve, helping generate a “real buzz” across the country.
“People who didn’t want to stock it now stock it,” says Barrel, who has helped raised awareness of UHD curve across New Zealand. “It’s gone so well that we are ramping up supply.”
According to Barrel, the curvature itself is designed to slot perfectly into the average Kiwi living room, providing the ultimate viewing experience from the three / four metre distance between the couch and the TV.
“When we launched UHD we wanted to make it available to everybody,” adds Barrel, insisting Samsung is targeting the masses with its latest tech innovation.
“It’s very important that we don’t just offer the world’s largest or biggest UHD curve, we provide a range Kiwis can afford and that’s crucial.”
As with any market release however, as the industry rivals catch on and catch up, Barrel expects the rise in competition to be reflected in the lowering of prices further down the line.
“I’d expect so for sure,” he says. “We’re the only manufacturer who has UHD curve in the world which is a great opportunity for us but we’re not going to sit and rest on that.
“We are offering a wide range to Kiwis and as always with technology, generally it starts higher and works its way downwards in price.”
Despite the obvious allure of UHD curve, arguably Samsung’s greatest innovation is the One Connect box, designed for tomorrow’s UHD connectivity ensuring customers can stay up to date without having to buy another TV.
“We’re incredibly proud of the One Connect box which is effectively the brains of the TV,” adds Barrel, who says it can be replaced as technology evolves.
“Given the future is difficult to predict, at Samsung we have a solution for whatever direction technology goes in, and that is through the One Connect box.
“Kiwis are early adopters and some say too early in some cases but through the One Connect box they can buy with confidence - knowing they have that safety net of always being able to stay up-to-date with the latest technology.”
Insisting “more content is coming”, Barrel admits one of the challenges Samsung faced when produced the UHD curve TV was the issue of content.
But with TVNZ and TV 3 deals already secured, Samsung acknowledges Kiwis not only want content, but control over what they watch.
“Generally customers are out of the TV market for three or four years at best and when they reenter they seek guidance on what TV is best for them,” Barrel adds.
“We understand Kiwis want more control and Samsung TVs are designed to be the hub of content and connectivity.
“Whether it be watching movies, sports, gaming, the future is people having higher resolution TVs which will be the hub, the device which talks to the phone and talks to the tablet, and at Samsung we have that.”
With Ultra HD and 4K arguably the hottest buzzwords in technology right now, it’s clear to see that when it comes to TV manufacturers, Samsung is ahead of the curve - quite literally.