Samsung launches its 2016 TV range – EFTM
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Samsung launches its 2016 TV range

SUHD is the big thing - again, but they've got some tricks up their sleeves

Following the launches from LG, Sony, Hisense and Panasonic, Samsung have unveiled their TV lineup for 2016 and from the looks of it – despite being the market leader, they are taking on LG head-on.

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When the TVs are revealed at CES in January it’s all very exciting, but we never know which ones will make it to our shores, thus, we wait for the Aussie launch for model releases and pricing.

This year Samsung is again pushing hard on their top of the range SUHD TVs which feature “Quantum Dot” technology to enhance the picture brightness and quality.

We heard from a professor of Quantum Physics at the launch all about what really makes Quantum technology work – it’s a mind-blowing thing to have explained to you, and I’m not going to try to repeat it – needless to say, I feel more confident now that the talk of Quantum dot as a technology in the TV is more than just marketing hype – it’s real and it produces a more vibrant and real-life colour than traditional technology.

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That said, I don’t see it selling TVs.  People are still going on design, features and usability as much if not more than quality today.  However, taking that in mind it seems Samsung are taking LG’s lead by offering an in-store side by side comparison of their LED and SUHD technology so people can see just how the picture is better.

For me though, there’s something else critical that Samsung have done to counter the popularity of the LG TV – and that’s the user interface.

LG’s WebOS has been a huge boost for what has been a boring click and arrow based on-screen experience.  Samsung’s new Smart Hub is a lower third menu system that allows you to customise what you see at a click with the remote, and more than that it is very customisable and intuitive.

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For example, plug in a Blu Ray player and not only do you have that HDMI input as a source to choose, but if the unit is 2010 or newer, it will tell you what it is.  Plug in Foxtel it will show as Foxtel, plug in an Xbox it will show as an Xbox – in name and icon.

Plus the remote control automatically picks put the functions of the device and becomes a universal remote controlling what you need when you need it.

Most innovative is the smart hub interface that allows you while still watching your existing program to select an app like Netflix and before leaving your standard viewing – see your recently watched show list, or recommended content.  Plus, when you launch them – they launch direct into the show, not just to the Netflix homepage.

With Foxtel you can set some channel favourites, but you can see some more integration coming in the future.

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All in all, this is a big leap forward for the user interface for Samsung and will be a big selling point which I think will come through in the reviews over the months ahead.

Samsung also launched new soundbars which have been designed and engineered at their California Audio Lab, and the best feature of all – a low price wireless rear-speaker option – just $179.

There’s a LOT of TVs coming, the Series 9 K9800 are the top of the line stretching down to standard LED TVs – here’s the full list of 2016 Samsung TVs and their pricing and availability if known.

SUHD TVs
Samsung Series 9 KS9800 88-inch SUHD TV – Available July 2016
Samsung Series 9 KS9500 78-inch SUHD TV – Available July 2016
Samsung Series 9 KS9500 65-inch SUHD TV – RRP $6,299, available now
Samsung Series 9 KS9500 55-inch SUHD TV – RRP $4,299, available now
Samsung Series 9 KS9005 75-inch SUHD TV – RRP $10,999, available July 2016
Samsung Series 9 KS9000 65-inch SUHD TV – RRP $5,999, available now
Samsung Series 9 KS9000 55-inch SUHD TV – RRP $3,999, available now
Samsung Series 8 KS8500 65-inch SUHD TV – RRP $5,799, available now
Samsung Series 8 KS8500 55-inch SUHD TV – RRP $3,899, available now
Samsung Series 8 KS8000 65-inch SUHD TV – RRP $5,499, available now
Samsung Series 8 KS8005 60-inch SUHD TV – RRP $4,499, available June
Samsung Series 8 KS8000 55-inch SUHD TV – RRP $3,599, available now

UHD TVs
Samsung Series 7 KU7500 78-inch UHD TV – available August 2016
Samsung Series 7 KU7500 65-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 7 KU7500 55-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 7 KU7000 65-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 7 KU7000 55-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 7 KU7000 49-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 70-inch UHD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 65-inch UHD TV – RRP $3,899, available now
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 60-inch UHD TV – RRP $2,999, available May
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 55-inch UHD TV – RRP $2,199, available now
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 50-inch UHD TV – RRP $1,899, available May
Samsung Series 6 KU6000 40-inch UHD TV – RRP $1,399, available now

HD TVs
Samsung Series 5 K5500 49-inch HD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 5 K5500 40-inch HD TV – available July 2016
Samsung Series 5 K5500 32-inch HD TV – available July 2016

Ultra HD Blu-ray Player
Samsung UBD-K8500 Curved Ultra HD Blu-ray Player – RRP $599, available now

Soundbars and Speakers
Samsung Series 8 Curved Soundbar, RRP $1,599, available now
Samsung Series 7 Curved Soundbar, RRP $1,299, available now
Samsung Series 6 Curved Soundbar, RRP $899, available now
Samsung Series 6 Soundbar, RRP $849, available now
Samsung Series 5 Soundbar, RRP $699, available June
Samsung Series 4 Soundbar, RRP $549, available now
Samsung Series 3 Soundbar, RRP $399, available now
Samsung Wireless Rear Speaker Kit, RRP $179, available now

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Tech

Trevor produces two of the most popular technology podcasts in Australia, Your Tech Life and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He has a weekly radio show on 2UE, as well as appearances across the country and regularly provides Technology Commentary to Channel 9’s Today Show and A Current Affair. Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave. Like this post? Buy Trev a drink!
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