Will Samsung futureproof TVs?

Updated: 
Picture of Samsung TVsElectronics giant Samsung is claiming its new TV models will be futureproof and won't need replacing every five minutes. Senior Samsung man Joe Stinziano (pictured with one of the TVs) used the CES show in Las Vegas to show off new brighter screens based on OLED like the one behind him, as well as explaining how the need to change televisions every other year or so would go away.

The new screen resolution is inevitable as televisions continue to get better and better. The upgrade technology will work first by allowing the set to be controlled by gestures and voice (this isn't as improbable as it sounds, Microsoft has allowed the Xbox 360 to be controlled in this way for a while now) and it will have face recognition technology.

No, we don't know why that would be useful either but a couple of years ago we wouldn't have anticipated gesture control either.

Expansion


More importantly it will have an expansion kit. This means that when something new comes out you'll be able (or an expert will be able) to upgrade the existing TV rather than have to replace it with something entirely new or add a box, as (for example) you would do if you wanted to move to an Internet-connected TV from an ordinary model.

Samsung is describing this, with some justification, as future-proofing. Of course it'll be limited future-proofing. 20 years ago TVs had a different shaped screen compared to the standard movie sized televisions we have now; all the swap-out upgrades in the world wouldn't address that. Likewise an old standard resolution television couldn't become high definition, it takes a full change of television to achieve that.

It's therefore difficult to futureproof things completely - and arguably neither Samsung nor any other television manufacturer can afford to have us buying one television and then no more for the next 20 years. Nonetheless, in terms of mitigating the risk of a television becoming out of date too quickly, swappable parts rather than complete replacements looks like a constructive idea.

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