Philips Unveils 4K Ultra HDTVs With Google Cast
P&F USA, which manages the Philips brand for TVs and home theater products in North America, introduced Thursday a new line of Philips 4K Ultra HDTVs that will utilize the new Google Cast streaming media platform.
The Philips 6000 Series TVs will be available in the 43-, 49-, 55- and 65-inch screen sizes. All offer 3840×2160 4K Ultra HD resolution.
The 49- and 55-inch models feature a BrightPro LED backlighting system along with Micro Dimming backlight for “enhanced HDR performance on IPS LCD panels,” which support wider viewing angles than typical LCD screens.
The 43- and 65-inch models feature a Macro Dimming LED backlight and HDR support using VA panels, that generally produce brighter pictures than IPS panels.
All models incorporate 802.11ac Wireless LAN with MIMO antennas for faster, more reliable connections when streaming.
Read more on the Philips 6000 Series 4K Ultra HD Google Cast TVs after the jump:
Philips joins Vizio and Polaroid in introducing 4K Ultra HD TVs this year that rely on the new Google Cast system for finding and viewing streamed content.
Google Cast is the same technology used in Google’s Chromecast streaming media dongle that connects to TVs and streams content from Internet services, using apps and controls on wirelessly linked smart phones, tablets or notebooks.
More and more manufacturers are going the Google Cast route, a representative of one company using the platform told us, because it is expensive and problematic to have to develop individual streaming apps for each service in order to get those services to work with a proprietary smart TV operating system.
Using a more or less standardized platform like Google Cast makes it easier to add streaming app services and therefore increases the quantity of those services available to the video display purchaser.
Google Cast also streams content directly from the cloud-based streaming services to the display, instead of through the smart phone, tablet or notebook app, freeing up the device for other functions, and improving the quality of images and sound received by the display compared to content streamed directly from the smart device to the TV screen. In the Google Cast approach, the smart device is only used for the selection and control of apps that direct content streamed from the cloud to the TV.
P&F said the Philips 6000 series TVs will have access to thousands of apps. In addition to Google Cast, the TV models deliver 4K resolution and will read HDR metadata and display it to the capabilities of each set.
Philips said all of its 2016 4K Ultra HDTVs will support high dynamic range (HDR) images, which provide improvement in brightness, contrast and color performance. The company also previously announced it would be supporting Dolby Vision HDR in some models, but it did not specify Dolby Vision was available in the 6000 series announcement, so this series presumably only supports the open HDR-10 HDR format.
The 6000 series TVs feature Philips 120 Perfect Motion Rate technology that reduces response time to produce faster picture transitions and reduce motion artifacts.
Non-native refresh rate numbers can generally be halved to give you the true native refresh rate number of the display. We are awaiting confirmation from P&F, but this would likely be a 60 Hz native refresh rate panel. Panels with native refresh rates higher than 60 Hz generally produce the best results in handling motion artifacts.
P&F said the new BrightPro LED backlight further enhances performance by boosting brightness, and by using Philips’ Pixel Plus Ultra HD processing engine that is said to produce sharper images with brighter whites and blacker blacks.
For improved sound, the Philips 6000 series models have Sonic Emotion Premium sound enhancement, which includes Sonic Emotion’s Absolute 3D sound technology.
Other features include: HDMI 2.0a with HDCP2.2 on all HDMI ports and built-in HEVC and VP9 decoders to connect with new HDR 4K Blu-ray players and other HDR-supporting devices.
The design of the 6000 series uses an ultra-thin bezel and a pair of discreet, cast metal legs that provide stability.
Suggested retail pricing and availability for the four Philips 6000 series Google Cast TVs is as follows: the 43-inch 43PFL6621/F7 ($649.99) and 65-inch 65PFL6621/F7 ($1,499.99), will ship in July; and the 49-inch 49PFL6921/F7($799.99) and 55-inch 55PFL6921/F7 ($999.99), will ship in June.
By Greg Tarr
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