High Art But is Samsung’s The Frame Ultra High Tech?

Samsung today launched in Auckland an award-winning TV that couldn’t be more living room-friendly.

The Frame is so-called because it’s designed to look more like a painting hanging on the wall rather than just another 4K TV — complete with an “art mode” that’s essentially a digital gallery of 100 works that Samsung has commissioned from 37 international artists and designers.

There’s also the option to subscribe to Samsung’s Art Store while personal content, including photos, can be exhibited and customised using an app on a smartphone or tablet.

The Best of Innovation winner at CES 2017 also has sensors for adjusting the on-screen display to the natural levels of light in a room and for automatically turning off the screen to save power when no one’s in the room.

It’s for sale in two sizes — 55 inches ($3999) and 65 inches ($5999) — and buyers can choose from one of three “frames”: white, beige wood or walnut.

These also can be bought separately for $249 and $349 respectively if you want to interchange the frames and to complete the picture, Samsung offers a metal easel, or Studio Stand (with a cable management system), for $800.

Bundled with both models are Samsung’s ingenious No Gap Wall Mount and its One Connect box, which includes four HDMI inputs and a dual tuner, and connects to the TV via a single transparent cable.

So The Frame is as easy to hang as a painting and its svelte remote control can operate most a/v components.

In short, it’s an extraordinarily tidy solution for people who want to harmonise their tech with their home.

As Jens Anders, sales director for Consumer Electronics Samsung NZ, says:  “Technology should enhance our daily lives, without being obtrusive.

“The beauty of The Frame is that it blends in to your existing interior décor when it isn’t being used like a conventional TV.”

But its technology is surprisingly conventional by Samsung standards. Rather than use The Frame to showcase its groundbreaking QLED technology, Samsung has opted for the lower-end 4K panel used in its MU6400 series.

It’s still a step up from the MU6300 and MU6100 series but lacks the “Premium UHD” specs of Samsung’s MU7000, MU8000 and MU9000 TVs — which are second only to its breathtakingly beautiful QLED range.

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