UHD: Execs Debate Production, Distribution, Adoption at CES

As expected, Ultra HD was a hot topic at the 2014 International CES, with plenty of support as well as debate. While some have asserted that UHD is inevitable at this point, others have suggested that success will be reliant upon the right combination of multiple factors including 4K set penetration, an efficient delivery infrastructure and the availability of content. Industry leaders addressed these topics and more during compelling panel discussions in Las Vegas. Continue reading UHD: Execs Debate Production, Distribution, Adoption at CES

Canon Unveils New Vixia Camcorders and PowerShot Cameras

Canon unveiled new models of its Vixia camcorders and PowerShot cameras at CES, including the $300-$450 Vixia HF R52, HF R50 and HF R500 camcorders with 57x zoom; the $400 Vixia mini X compact personal camcorder with 12.8 megapixel sensor; the $250 PowerShot SX600 HS with 18x optical zoom and 16-megapixel CMOS sensor; the $200 ELPH 340 HS with 12x optical zoom; and the $350 PowerShot N100 digital camera, which includes a new “dual capture mode.” Continue reading Canon Unveils New Vixia Camcorders and PowerShot Cameras

Wearables Waiting For a Killer App to Take Them Mainstream

Considering a mere five percent of U.S. consumers wear activity trackers, will wearables ever cross-over to the mainstream? Even the experts in this field have trouble agreeing. Steven Pierce, of IBM’s global business development, said we’ll have ten devices on our bodies very soon. “Wearables will be the key source of information in five years,” he said, listing implantables and injectables as future wearables. But Sonny Vu, founder of Misfit Wearables, disagreed. “Five years isn’t that far away,” he said. “I don’t think science will advance that fast.” Continue reading Wearables Waiting For a Killer App to Take Them Mainstream

Vacuum Sealed Protection for Smartphones That Also Floats

A new version of the DryCASE for smartphones and larger sizes for tablets was introduced at CES by Dry Corp. If you grew up by the sand and water you’ll appreciate how this crystal clear vacuum bag can both protect your phone from the elements and save it from a watery grave. Learning the hard way that anything in a pocket seems destined to end up 100 feet below the surface, this case and it’s armband supply both protection and flotation. So even if it’s not stowed on your arm it will bob to the surface. Continue reading Vacuum Sealed Protection for Smartphones That Also Floats

CES Microcosm: Sony Press Events Focus on End-to-End 4K

It began Monday night with a low cost 4K camcorder, new 4K TVs and a 4K streaming partnership with Netflix, all announced during Sony’s press reveal. But CEO Kaz Hirai kept the news coming during his 2014 International CES keynote Tuesday morning, as Sony introduced new cloud-based streaming TV and gaming services. These events clearly helped set the tone for a show that was dominated by every aspect of the 4K pipeline, especially TVs, and somewhat surprisingly, streaming services. Continue reading CES Microcosm: Sony Press Events Focus on End-to-End 4K

Nabu: Razer’s First Wearable Wins CES People’s Choice Award

How would you like to exchange LinkedIn, Facebook and/or Twitter connections with a simple handshake? You can do that now with Razer’s Nabu, the company’s first wearable device. CES attendees responded enthusiastically, giving it the People’s Choice Award. The win was among finalists in 13 categories, including Best Startup, Best Automotive Electronic Device, Best Video and Best Software, and accounted for nearly 50 percent of the total 54,511 Engadget reader votes. Continue reading Nabu: Razer’s First Wearable Wins CES People’s Choice Award

Bendable Screens Provide the Option of Going Flat or Curved

Bendable video screens offer the best of both worlds: an immersive cinema experience by pushing forward into the screen for an increased peripheral experience — or a flat panel for viewing basic content such as a news show from across the room. New flexible substrates are making this possible, and two manufacturers showed prototypes at CES. Samsung and LG both unveiled widescreen TVs that can mechanically bend at the press of a remote control button. Continue reading Bendable Screens Provide the Option of Going Flat or Curved

Technicolor Demos New High Dynamic Range Imaging System

Technicolor demonstrated a high dynamic range (HDR) imaging technology at CES this week that intends to improve the consumer viewing experience. The company has plans to propose its imaging tech to the Moving Picture Experts Group in hopes of including it in the HEVC compression scheme for streaming 4K content. Technicolor is also demonstrating developments targeting the Internet of Things, in addition to connected cars and Ultra HD delivery. Continue reading Technicolor Demos New High Dynamic Range Imaging System

UHD Tech: High Dynamic Range Lands on Hollywood’s Radar

While Ultra HD is clearly a leading theme at CES this week, numerous members of the engineering community believe the technology will require wider color gamut, higher dynamic range and higher frame rates to succeed. Dolby, Technicolor and Sony all presented plans to address these needs, while the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, the consortium behind UltraViolet, is looking at support for 4K as well as higher dynamic range and related features. Continue reading UHD Tech: High Dynamic Range Lands on Hollywood’s Radar

Ultra HD TV: Samsung and Sharp Demonstrate 8K Tech at CES

While much of the fanfare surrounding Ultra HD at CES this week was related to 4K technology and related products, its sibling 8K (at 16 times the resolution of 1080p) also had a presence. Samsung showcased its first 8K screen, a 98-inch QUHD or Quad Ultra HD, while Sharp demonstrated an 85-inch 8K display, in addition to a prototype combined with Dolby 3D glasses-free technology (that delivered nearly 4K resolution per eye, but with a rather narrow viewing angle). Continue reading Ultra HD TV: Samsung and Sharp Demonstrate 8K Tech at CES

Ultra HD Flirting with Aspect Ratio: Video Curves That Please

Immersive technology was all the rage as wide screens took over cinema in the 1950s. Its impact was made real again in three manufacturers’ booths at the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show. Samsung, LG and Hitachi all showed impressive 105-inch diagonal, “5K” displays. The immense curved screens, featuring an ultra-wide 21:9 aspect ratio, are the first of their kind to present movies this close to their native cinematic format. Continue reading Ultra HD Flirting with Aspect Ratio: Video Curves That Please

Value Providers Show Impressive 4K TVs at Reasonable Prices

The speed of CE technology adoption may be getting an impressive jolt in a potentially unprecedented reversal. From video screens developed as house brands and partnerships of glass and panel producers, we saw a surprising number of quality Ultra HD TV sets at CES scheduled for reasonable price points. Seiki and Polaroid both showcased sub-$1,000 4K TVs, while companies such as Vizio were promising “consumer-friendly” prices for 4K sets launching this year. Continue reading Value Providers Show Impressive 4K TVs at Reasonable Prices

Pixelworks Enables Content Owners to Upscale HD/2K to 4K

The advent of 4K TVs presents much the same conundrum that HD did when it arrived: fabulous new display technology but very little content. One solution is to upscale HD and 2K content to 4K, but the result isn’t always ideal. “Generally, any form of scaling creates an adverse effect on the image, even though the 4K display is better,” said Graham Loveridge, Pixelworks SVP of strategic marketing and business development. “That’s because the pixels are being stretched. You’re creating a ramp rather than a sharp transition.” Continue reading Pixelworks Enables Content Owners to Upscale HD/2K to 4K

CES Panel: Sixth Sense is Digital, Say Wearables Innovators

At a panel provocatively titled “The Sixth Sense is Digital,” several wearables pioneers gathered to discuss the evolving changes and direction of the burgeoning industry. NeuroSky CEO Stanley Yang started it off with a series of important questions: “First, you have to ask — do I need to wear anything? If I do, what’s helpful? After motion tracking, what do you do with it? Who can design the next wearable technology for the masses with the functions we need?” Continue reading CES Panel: Sixth Sense is Digital, Say Wearables Innovators

Comcast Unveils Plans to Produce Winter Olympics in Ultra HD

Some of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games will be recorded in Ultra HD according to Tony Werner, Comcast’s chief technology officer. The cable company will integrate a new app in Samsung’s 4K TVs to allow for on-demand streaming of the games broadcast from Sochi. Part of the motivation to record in UHD is to “stimulate the imagination” of viewers to see what 4K can do for sports, Werner explained at a CES panel discussion on UHD content. Continue reading Comcast Unveils Plans to Produce Winter Olympics in Ultra HD

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