Google isn’t giving up on TVs yet. While its new Android TV flavor of Android L will hit the streets in set-top boxes aimed at game consoles and media streamers, it announced that next year smart TVs from Sony (all of its 4K and smart TVs), Sharp and TP Vision / Philips will ship with the OS. It’s also working with some familiar TV providers overseas like LG U+ in Korea (not LG Electronics TVs, which are moving to webOS) and SFR in France, as well as the chipmakers that build the components for smart TVs and boxes as seen in the slide above. The difference from the original Google TV approach is that the company isn’t treating Android TV as an entirely separate platform from mobile, and everything needed to handle video from HDMI,TV tuners or IPTV receivers is now natively included in Android L. We’ll probably have to wait until CES 2015 to find out if it’s having any success convincing more TV manufacturers to join in (again), but these are a start.
Android TV: Google Cast, voice search and tailored content. Visit http://t.co/H3lQNHUvcn for a preview and look for devices this fall.
- Android (@Android) June 25, 2014
Source: Android TV
When Motorola unveiled its snappy Moto 360 smartwatch, the first thing we thought was “how do you make a round display?” Sharp has one answer with its new IGZO-based “Free-Form” LCD prototype that can be sculpted into any shape. The company’s current IGZO tech only works with rectangular displays, where the circuits that drive the LCD live on the perimeter of the screen. Sharp managed to bake those chips into the display itself, allowing for not only a shrunken bezel but nearly any display format you might want. That’ll let designers create much more compact car dashboards, new digital signage, unusually shaped monitors and yes, wearables like smartwatches. That likely won’t include the Moto 360, though, since it’s rumored to have an OLED display. Also, Sharp says that the Free-Form display is nearly ready for mass production, but isn’t quite there yet.
Filed under: Displays
Even though CES 2014 is long gone, some of the stuff announced there is just now starting to become available for purchase. Case in point: Sharp’s Quattron+ lineup, a series of 2014 AQUOS televisions featuring the latest and greatest, including a revamped SmartCentral platform. But that’s not what’s interesting here. Instead, it’s the Quattron+ technology, one that Sharp describes as being able to “accept a 4K signal and play it back at near-4K resolution, with an effective resolution of 3,840 x 2,160.”
The company says this is possible thanks to its Revelation Upscaler, which takes HD content and “optimizes it for the higher resolution screen, so that it’s sharper and more vivid.” By building Q+ TVs on 1080p panels, Sharp claims it’s then capable of pricing these lower than some of its would-be competitors. Now, is that enough to get you to buy into it? If so, you’ll have quite a few options to choose from — they’re up for grabs now in 60-, 70- and 80-inch flavors, with prices ranging from $2,500 all the way to a cool $6,000.
Sharp’s AQUOS Serie mini phone has a Full HD IGZO display, bright colors, limited stateside availability
With phone specifications often reaching a terminal velocity before the next new technology or trend, giving your hardware a differentiator can be hard. Sharp’s new AQUOS Serie mini SHL24, however, is having a stab at a couple. Firstly, the TV-maker is leveraging its IGZO screen tech, and spicing it up by cramming a full (1080p) HD display into the 4.5-inch panel — that’s almost 490 PPI. Secondly, in what it’s calling an “EDGEST” design, the AQUOS Serie mini SHL24 seems to have some of the thinnest bezels we’ve seen for some time (bar the bottom one where the buttons are) making that screen really take pride of place. Thirdly? Colors of course! As for the rest of the specification, well it’s not too shabby either. First up it’s running Android Jellybean (4.2), sports a 13-megapixel camera, 16GB of storage (with an SD card slot) and a Snapdragon (MSM8974) quad-core processor — clocked at around 2.2 GHz. Oh, and it’s even waterproofed to IPX57 standards. That’s quite a few boxes ticked. But, sadly there’s one biggie that currently remains empty — as far as we can see right now, this is a Japan-only device. Sorry.
Via: Phone Arena
You might say the day is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workday, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Daily Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 24 hours — all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on through the break, and enjoy.
Motorola’s Moto G is the latest phone to get made over with stock Android. And starting at just $180 for the 8GB model, it’s the cheapest Play edition available. Click on through for more details.
In the midst of Microsoft’s massive internal restructuring, Variety reports that Blair Westlake has resigned from his position as VP of Microsoft’s Media and Entertainment Group. Follow the link for more information.
What you’re looking at is Jawbone’s second-generation Era Bluetooth headset. This $100 device packs a 10-hour battery and is 42 percent smaller than the previous model. Click through for our hands-on photos.
Spotify removed all stipulations from its desktop app, allowing users to listen to whatever they want without a subscription. Click the link for details.
Filed under: Misc
Let’s see, sporty Intel Core-i5 processor and Windows 8.1? Check. Retina-esque 3,200 x 1,800 15.6-inch display? Check. 4GB RAM and a 128GB SSD? Of course. If Sharp’s RW-16G sounds like the laptop of your dreams, sorry, but it’s actually a tablet in the mold of Panasonic’s 20-inch, 4K Toughpad or Samsung’s new Galaxy Note Pro 12.2. Sharp is keying in on business users for the new slate with a bundled stylus for graphics pros, along with screen sharing to assist during presentations. With the Japanese company’s own IGZO screen tech, it’ll also outlast everyone’s bladders with nine hours of battery life. There’s no pricing or availability yet, but so far, it looks destined for the Japan market only — if you’re stateside, Samsung’s aforementioned model or a Surface Pro 2 might have to do.
Filed under: Tablets
Source: Sharp (translated)
It’s so big and bright that it wasn’t hard to find inside Sharp’s booth, even when surrounded by a sea of other televisions from the manufacturer. What you see above, folks, is an 85-inch, 8K glasses-free 3D TV from Sharp. This behemoth, ultra-high-res display is rather similar to the one from CES 2013, save for the fact you can enjoy three-dimensional content without any eye hardware. While everything about this LED TV is indeed interesting, we can’t say we were too impressed by the glasses-free 3D. It is pretty easy for your eyes to get tired of the effect quickly, and at times some frames pass through so fast that it ends up making the content seem blurry — we’re not the only ones who feel this way, apparently. Aside from those things, the image is incredibly sharp; the TV was showing scenes from Life of Pi and Frozen, both of which looked stunning on the big screen.
Obviously, Sharp’s 85-inch, 8K 3D TV is still in the early stages, and thus it wouldn’t be fair to judge it based on first impressions. Chances are it’ll improve tremendously as the company continues to work on it. For now, it is a very dazzling thing to look at and we can’t wait to see it down the road. Check out the pictures we took of it after the break, or, if you’re here at the LVCC, stop by the Sharp booth to experience it yourself. Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Sharp Aquos lineup for 2014 bears 1080p and 4K TVs, a revamped SmartCentral platform and the new Quattron+ Series
We knew an army of TVs would be making an appearance at CES 2014. Accordingly, Sharp has just announced what we can expect out of the Aquos portfolio this year, with new hardware being introduced as part of its HD, Quattron and 4K Series — there’s also the debut of Quattron+, but we’ll talk more about that a little later. As expected, Sharp is placing emphasis on big LED screens: Each model begins at 60 inches, ranging all the way up to 90 inches in the case of the HD Series. Speaking of which, the entry-level Aquos HD will be priced starting at $1,300, offering 1080p at 120Hz, 2D/3D options and Smart TV features. Meanwhile, the Quattron Series, which starts at $1,700, also does 1080p, but at 240Hz, plus it’s equipped with Quattron technology and Sharp’s completely overhauled SmartCentral platform, something the HD line doesn’t have access to.
Those looking to spend a little more will be able to choose from the newly minted Quattron+ or 4K Series, both of which are running the company’s revamped Smart TV software, SmartCentral 3. TVs with Quattron+ (seen above) are sort of a step between 1080p and Ultra HD; Sharp describes them as the “highest-resolution full HD” sets available, noting that the technology “divides each pixel, creating two pixels from one, to deliver 16 million subpixels.” Prices on these are expected to be from $2,300 to $6,000 — this gets you things like 3D, THX-approved sound, Bluetooth and, on the higher-end models, an AquoMotion 960, 240Hz screen. Lastly, the 4K Series, which is likely the most interesting of the bunch and ranges from $5,000 to $6,000, gets you an Ultra HD TV with an AquoMotion 240, 120Hz display, THX 4K, 3D, a duo bass subwoofer and four HDMI 2.0 ports. All in all, Sharp is going to be kicking off the year with a total of 19 different Aquos TVs; the HD, Quattron and Quattron+ are expected to ship in the spring, though there’s no word yet on when the 4K Series is due to arrive.
Sharp isn’t only introducing an array of televisions at this year’s CES. Today, the company also took the time to reveal a new Universal Player, its first to support the WiSA open standard. The SD-WH1000U, as it will be known by model name, can play CDs, SACDs, DVDs and Blu-rays wirelessly, with the accessibility side of things being complemented by two HDMI and three USB 3.0 ports — yes, it can connect to the internet as well. Most important, however, is the fact that the Sharp Universal Player meets WiSA requirements, allowing you to seamlessly push out high-quality video and audio content (1080p resolution, 24-bit/96kHz uncompressed sound at 5.2-5.8 GHz range) without the need for any cords. Just don’t expect this potential addition to your WiSA-friendly setup to be a cheap one, as it’s set to be priced at a cool $4,000 once it begins shipping later this year.
Sharp loves to show off the 8K technology it hopes to see in your living room in the future. It’s no surprise, then, that the outfit is yet again using CES as a platform to tease another super, super high-res 85-inch screen. Unlike the gorgeous panel we saw last year (pictured above), though, this time Sharp’s rolled into the desert with a glasses-free 3D flavor of its 7,680 x 4,320 display. The company isn’t sharing many more details at the moment, but, for what it’s worth, it did mention that its latest 8K creation was done in collaboration with Philips and Dolby. While we haven’t seen this thing ourselves, we know it’s here, somewhere in Las Vegas, so we’ll be sure to update this post as soon as our eyes meet all those pixels.