Panasonic, LG add to Comfort of Home Theater
The partners include Funai, which distributes the Philips, Magnavox, Sylvania and Emerson brands in the United States, Panasonic, Sanyo, Sharp and Toshiba. Each company will introduce Blu-ray disc players or digital televisions that will instantly stream thousands of movies and TV episodes from Netflix that can be watched instantly in the comfort of the living room.
Engadget points out that this means all but two of the major HDTV brands will soon be Netflix ready!
That means that each of those outfits will be pushing out Netflix-enabled HDTVs of Blu-ray Disc players in the year 2010, so you can plan on being in quite the pickle here soon if intentionally shopping for one of those two that doesn’t have access to your Watch Instantly queue. In fact, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has been quoted as saying that he expects “instant streaming of movies from Netflix to be available on more than one hundred different partner products in 2010,” so we’re pretty confident that Coby and Hannspree will be joining the fray in short order.
Despite uncertainty behind the Netflix streaming strategy (see Dan and Mike blog about it), copying the approach of adding support on as many internet appliances as possible is an undeniable trend. Just look at the number of new applications Panasonic added to Viera Cast:
Panasonic, the industry leader in high-quality Plasma and LCD HDTVs and a major developer of the Blu-ray format, announced today that Fox Sports, Netflix, Pandora, and Twitter services, and the Skype on Your TV application, will be added to its 2010 application lineup of VIERA CAST-enabled HDTVs and Blu-ray players. The new services bring additional high-quality Internet content to Panasonic’s broadband-connected devices, enhancing the user experience and creating the perfect home entertainment centerpiece. With these new features and applications, Panasonic owners will now be able to access the latest sports news and information, thousands of additional popular movie and television titles, their favorite musical artists and songs, and even make calls directly from their Panasonic HDTV. The new entertainment sites join and complement VIERA CAST’s current offerings, including Amazon Video on Demand™, YouTube™, Picasa™ Web Albums, Bloomberg News, and a weather application.
Skype turning your HDTV into a video phone is one of the more intriguing applications. NY Times highlighted Skye integrated into HDTV displays, a move that LG Electronics is also making, as one of the biggest HDTV trends at CES 2010, along with
- LED backlighting
- thinner displays
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