Thursday, January 8, 2009

Vizio Connected HDTVs

"Everybody is launching networked TVs it seems, but Vizio's 'Connected HDTV' sounds killer: Built-in 802.11n Wi-Fi, with every service you'd want: Amazon, Blockbuster and Netflix VOD, Pandora, Flickr, Rhapsody, plus any other Yahoo widget. Not there, you notice is Hulu. BUT, Vizio says they're in 'deep talks' with them. So Hulu, directly integrated into your TV, looks likely." So another device that connects to the web. Is the Vizio Tru2way compatible also so that it can work without another "converter box" next to it? Or is Vizio trying to create a model to eliminate cable subscription? Not true, according to their release. "VIZIO’s “Connected HDTV” Platform is designed to compliment TV viewing. At a single touch of the VIZIO customized remote control, viewers can access their favorite Internet content from the easy to navigate on screen display, without interrupting the TV program they are viewing. " Unfortunately, the other thing missing is a discussion about a Cablecard. And so while their new remote with qwerty keyboard looks cool, it may have to still share the coffee table with the tradition universal remote.

We seem to be box happy with gaming consoles and dvd players attached to our TVs as well. Can my shelf hold a Wii, PS3, XBox, Blu-ray, Mototola or S-A converter box. Or will it crash under the sheer weight. And while it is nice to hear about a "connected platform", does that connection extend to my own home computer? The average consumer seeks a solution where it is plug and play ready, interactive and interoperable, talking easily to the various devices in the home, and managed wirelessly from a single remote or mobile device. Connecting to the web is nice, but the Xbox and Roku and other devices do that already.

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