During a launch event earlier in May, LG revealed a slew of updates to their TV line-up, including LG Ultra HD (4K), Curved OLED and webOS Smart TV Platform.
Lots of products here. Let’s go through each of them one at a time.
webOS Smart TV Platform
The webOS platform was the one which excited me the most. Mostly because I am a geek who like my TV “smart” and also because the guy who developed this platform is a fellow Singaporean, Colin Zha0:
I spoke to Colin briefly during the event. He is based in Silicon Valley in San Francisco and had actually worked on the webOS platform when he was at Hewlett Packard (HP). When LG acquired WebOS from HP in May last year, Colin followed and perfected the platform to what is now.
Here’s a video introduction to the webOS platform:
Basically, webOS is LG’s new Smart TV platform with an intuitive user experience that is both seamless and refreshingly uncomplicated. This new platform makes it extremely easy for developers to create applications and enhances the compatibility of LG’sSmart+ TV s with other devices.In addition, the webOS platform has been acknowledged by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and Intertek for its convenient graphical user interface.
Simple to Connect, Easy to Use
The webOS platform greatly simplifies the TV experience. Its ease-of-use makes content searching and viewing, connecting with other devices, and even the initial setup process incredibly smooth.
The first time the user turns on the webOS-enabled LG Smart+ TV, an animated character named BeanBird appears onscreen to help users get connected and walk them through the setup process. webOS can instantly recognize when and what kind of external device has been plugged into the TV and brings up a pop-up menu listing all relevant options for the user to choose from.
The LG Magic Remote, which offers ease-of-pairing and multiple control options – scroll, point, click and voice – has also been positively assessed by UL and Intertek. The convenient functionality of the Magic Remote works hand-in-hand with the streamlined webOS interface.
Instant Access and Easy Content Switching
The new Launcher, a left-to-right scrollable menu that runs along the lower portion of the screen is one of the most distinctive features of webOS. With the Launcher menu, users can easily browse through service or content options without having to navigate away from their current viewing choice. It allows the viewer to simultaneously watch a show, play a game or browse the internet while searching or downloading other content. What’s more, Live Menu, which can be opened while viewing the TV, keeps the channel and recorded options within easy reach.
Content Discovery Made Simple
LG’s webOS offers access to the LG Store’s comprehensive collection of apps. The LG Store conveniently organizes all content available on the webOS platform into category tabs. It also offers recommendations based on popularity, allowing users to discover exciting new entertainment options with a simple click. In short, this clever new platform reduces the number of steps needed to switch between content, which makes searching, selection and the overall Smart+ TV experience simpler and better than ever.
The webOS platform will be implemented in more than 70 percent of LG’s 2014 Smart+ TVs line-up, which are available in both ULTRA HD and Full HD.
Next, let’s move on the curved OLED TV. They were the first TV models which caught my attention during the launch, due to its unique shape.
The World’s First CURVED OLED TV
With the gently curved screen and LG’s proprietary WRGB OLED technology, the CURVED OLED TV produces the most life-like colors and an infinite contrast ratio with deeper blacks and brighter whites compared to a conventional RGB display, offering picture quality that is beyond the imagination. In addition, the screen delivers incredible color accuracy regardless of ambient light or viewing angle. The CURVED ￼ OLED TV’s breathtaking and modern design features the flowing, translucent Crystal Stand. It adds an elegant touch to the TV, while providing greater immersive viewing experience.
GALLERY OLED TV – Masterpiece Design with Powerful Sound
Extending the OLED collection, LG introduces the GALLERY OLED TV in 2014. Beautiful to behold, hidden behind the elegant frame of the GALLERY OLED TV is the Canvas Speaker, a powerful 2.2 channel, 100W forward-facing setup that guarantees a superb auditory experience. Honored with a CES 2014 Innovations Award, the artistically inspired 55EA880T can transform any average living room into the look and feel of an actual art gallery. The unit’s unique eGallery feature provides a variety of display modes that can be activated to create a specific mood. For instance, Gallery Mode turns the TV into a picture frame displaying some of the world’s most famous works of art.
The LG CURVED OLED TV (55EA970T) and the LG GALLERY OLED TV (55EA880T) is available at a recommended retail price of SGD$7,499 each.
LG Ultra HD (4K)
Setting new standards for all-around excellence, the stellar collection includes premium models as well as more affordable variations in screen sizes from 49 to 84 inches. Each LG ULTRA HD (4K) TV offers exceptional picture quality with images so rich in detail and color they could easily be mistaken for the real thing. A leader in 4K ULTRA HD technologies, LG is helping to advance the format via partnerships with multiple content providers.
LG ULTRA HD TVs employ sophisticated upscaling technology that converts SD, HD or Full HD content into crisp, near Ultra HD (4K) quality. Working in conjunction with the enhanced Super Resolution Algorithm, the True 4K Engine Pro eliminates almost all visual errors, ensuring a truly enjoyable viewing experience. Additionally, the True 4K Engine Pro supports 4K Motion Estimation Motion Compensation (MEMC) which offers the most flawless 4K ULTRA HD images and minimal motion blur.
With 4K HEVC 60p decoders already built-in, LG’s ULTRA HD (4K) TVs are future- proof. The powerful hardware is able to decode broadcast signals in H.264 and HEVC H.265 in either 30p or 60p. What’s more, these impressive TVs can display Ultra HD content from nearly any input source, including HDMI 2.0, USB and LAN.
With quadruple the amount of pixels found on FULL HD TVs, the latest LG ULTRA HD (4K) TVs offer 4K 3D+ , a whole new experience with the most captivating 3D image quality available. LG’s 4K 3D+ uses Film Patterned Retarder (FPR) technology to render convincing 3D images with virtually no flicker or crosstalk. The large, high resolution display of LG’s ULTRA HD (4K) TVs provide an exceptionally comfortable, flicker-free 3D viewing experience. Additionally, LG has included a unique control feature that makes it possible to adjust the intensity of the 3D effects with remarkable ease. The 2014 ULTRA HD (4K) TV models are also equipped with a highly effective 3D conversion engine for those times when 2D just isn’t enough.
LG ULTRA HD (4K) TVs employ 3840 x 2160 resolution In-Plane Switching (IPS) 4K panels that reproduce exceptionally vivid and accurate colors. Thanks to a wide viewing angle, the company’s IPS 4K Displays ensure a consistently excellent picture from near- ly any vantage point. The inherent advantages of IPS stand out even more clearly on the expansive screens of LG’s magnificent ULTRA HD (4K) TV lineup.
The new premium ULTRA HD (4K) TV model (UB980T) boast the deep, rich audio of the ULTRA Surround sound system, developed in collaboration with high-end audio products maker Harman Kardon. A forward-facing, multi-channel speaker configuration that reproduces sound with astounding clarity and precision, ULTRA Surround signifi- cantly increases the viewer’s sense of immersion.
The 2014 LG ULTRA HD (4K) TV lineup, including the 84UB980T, 79UB980T, 55UB850T, 49UB850T are now available in LG authorized retailers.
LG and Harman/Kardon Collaboration
Harman/Kardon, one of the most respected names in the audio industry, worked together with LG engineers to develop a speaker system that could deliver even, distortion-free sound with deep bass and a wide bandwidth. ULTRA Surround reproduces audio with amazing fidelity, placing viewers at the center of a wide and evenly dispersed soundstage.
Designed to deliver truly cinematic experiences, the ULTRA Surround system has superb dynamic range and balances sound with exceptional accuracy. It also boasts an extra wide playable bandwidth and powerful output. The system is engineered to deliver ￼high quality, detailed sound that surrounds the listener, creating a significantly more immersive experience than the average flat screen TV.
ULTRA Surround technology adds a three-dimensional quality to audio that is nothing short of spellbinding. The advanced technology utilizes a state-of-the-art algorithm to produce convincingly real soundscapes. The speakers cleverly distribute sound in multiple directions, balancing foreground and background noises to match the onscreen action while keeping dialog perfectly clear. In a scene featuring heavy rain, for example, viewers will feel as though rain drops are falling all around them, yet still be able to hear on-screen dialog clearly.
ULTRA Surround is a compelling addition to LG’s cutting-edge, large screen flagship TVs. The speakers offer multidirectional sound distribution and top-notch features that go well beyond merely supporting the theater-like viewing experience — they enhance and sharpen it. The results are captivating and incredibly exhilarating. The LG’s new ULTRA HD TV and OLED TV models with ULTRA Surround are a new standard for consumers who want the ultimate TV experience.