Philips plunges further with "immersive" TV experience

Posted by Mark Raby

Las Vegas (NV) - Philips spent almost all of the time during its CES press conference talking about expanding its TV technology to the point where it feels like you're "stepping into a mirror".

Philips this year introduced a new sector in its company, called "consumer lifestyle".  It combines the divisions of consumer electronics and domestric appliances/personal care.

Andrea Ragnetti, who has headed up the new sector, said the goal of Philips is to create a "truly immersive viewing experience".  He pointed to a really cool-looking HDTV called "Aurea", which launched last year in Europe.

In The US, we will be getting even more impressive technology, though Philips did not really say when its ambitions will truly be met.  Ragnetti said Philips is trying to create a TV experience that is "like stepping into a mirror".

The first step toward that will be the company's "design collection", a new series of TVs with invisible speakers that Phlips says cannot be seen at all from any point on the set.  The speakers are driven from the back and wrap around through the curved bezel.  Additionally, the design collection 7000 series TVs will be 1080p 120 Hz, with two milliseconds response time.

Last year, Philips introduced "Ambisound", a complement to the "Ambilight" TV technology it introduced.  Like no other company at CES, Philips wants to make the living room experience something that is completely seamless.  Because it just launched this new "consumer lifestyle" sector, much of Philips' inflated talking points were just concepts or seemingly unsubstantiated self-praise, but its HDTV style is one of the coolest I saw at all the CES press events today.

As for its take on the big Warner/Blu-ray news, Philips simply said, "The future for the consumer is nothing but Blu."