As the switch to digital TV nears completion across the country, the media have turned their attention to the future and how television could be transformed in the coming years. The problem is that each time something arrives on the market, before you can rush out to buy it, a new model with have come along and changed everything.
This, of course, is the never-ending problem when it comes to buying something as big and expensive as a television, first there was digital, then HD came along just a handful of years later, and then a few years after that 3D arrived (and is still arriving). With televisions that connect to the internet in various different formats, and glasses-less 3D apparently not too far off (peruse the vast array of 3D TV options at Dixons and you’ll see how various the options are), how can you decide what to buy?
First of all, the thing with 3D is relatively easy, as it’s nowhere near reaching its full potential. There are 3D televisions on the market, but they’re quite expensive and unless you want to watch television wearing those glasses in your own front room, they’re probably not worth it yet. There are also questions over the quality of 3D images, the amount of content around, and whether the trend is actually in the process of becoming less popular in the cinemas (which will deal quite a blow to sales of 3D televisions).
So, discounting 3D televisions from the equation makes life a little easier. The next thing to consider is the internet. If, like most people, you still have a desktop computer, one solution would be to use your television as the monitor for your computer. Obviously this doesn’t work for everyone, but if you want to surf the internet on your television and watch things like iPlayer on full screen (without investing in a set top box) connecting your computer and your TV is the way forward.
Even if this is a good option for you, it doesn’t avoid the problem of hardware advancing and leaving your model behind. Thankfully, those clever people at Samsung have come up with a good solution and invented a television that can update itself. The ES8000 – as well as doing lots of other clever things – has a slot where you can install hardware upgrades which keeps the television up with the latest developments. It’s not cheap, of course, but as it could save you a lot of money and should have a long shelf-life, it might be worthwhile.
If you don’t feel like spending that much money, good advice is to buy a really good, high quality, HD television. There are always announcements about advances in high definition, but it’s reaching the stage where the human eye won’t be able to spot the difference too clearly, so your best bet is to ignore the bells and whistles and pick something which has a really good, crystal clear screen.
Filed under: Technology