The Roving Reporter: Samsung SEA Forum 2011

2011 is such an exciting year for me, because Samsung has unveiled some great products that are going to improve many aspects of my life.

During the recent Samsung SEA, Ocenia and Taiwan Forum 2011 held at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre from 7 to 9 Mar 2011, I glimpsed into the future that Samsung has planned. Clearly, Samsung products have given the consumers a smarter life. With products ranging from thin-bezel 3D TV, Blu-ray players, wireless monitors, ultra-thin laptops, dual-core mobile devices, enriching camera functions, Samsung products offer great designs, enrich users’ experiences, and deliver inter-connectivity among devices.

Smart TV: How Smart?

The new Samsung TV aims to offer a seamless experience to the user. The bezel is ultra-thin (at only 5mm) so that it blends the TV into your living space. The TV lets you access the Internet, connect computing and storage devices in your home network and watch all the content on the Samsung TV. You can install HDTV apps to expand the capabilities, or use the Samsung Galaxy Tab or Galaxy S Smartphone as a wireless input device to navigate the screen.

I’m certainly delighted to know that my future TV will not have thick bezels that make the TV look big and heavy. For the same size, Samsung now offers larger screen dimensions. Now that’s smart!

I’m also excited that the new Samsung TV can be the one screen to access content within my home and the world outside. In one screen, I would be able to stream music and video from say, my PC in my study room. I can even use my Samsung Galaxy S/Galaxy Tab to control the TV, or as a keyboard and keypad to surf the Internet. And using an app called “Social TV” lets me chat with others (with Google Chat) as well as checking my Facebook status and Twitter feeds while watching the same TV content. All these interactive features, plus improved viewing quality from Samsung, TV experience will never be the same.

Blu-ray Players

The companion to the TV, the latest Blu-ray players lets you watch 3D Blu-ray content and effortlessly converts your 2D movies to 3D. But on top of that, the premium Blu-ray players now also come built-in with WiFi and Smart Hub so that you get to enjoy the same interactive experience if you do not have the latest Samsung Smart TV. The top-line product, D8900 comes with 1TB of storage to record your TV shows in full HD! The D7500 is currently the world’s slimmest Blu-ray player, and looks stunning when wall-mounted.

The 3D TV Experience

In 2011, Samsung continues to innovate the 3D experience. Samsung has further improved the 2D to 3D conversion, which means you get to watch your existing 2D content in better 3D results. The new 3D glasses use Bluetooth technology and are an absolute comfort to wear! Samsung redesigned the glasses so that the weight of the glasses is shifted to behind the ear. Charging the glasses is no longer a messy wired affair, as Samsung has implemented wireless charging using magnetic resonance technology. I believe Samsung is one of the first major companies to use this technology on a mass-market product.

Ultra-Thin Ultra-Durable Notebooks

The excitement does not end yet! Moving on to IT products, Samsung has designed a 13-inch notebook that is thinner and lighter than the 13-inch MacBook Air! It is the new Series 9, with 13.3 inch SuperBright Plus display, 0.64 inch thin, 1.32kg light, and built using Duralumin, which is twice tougher than aluminum. What I like is how the external ports flip open when you need to use them, and closes to flush with the bottom panel when not in use. So elegant.

Running on 128GB SSD which has no moving harddisk parts, the Series 9 notebook can start up in just 15 seconds, and wake from standby in just 3 seconds. A great advantage of SSD is that you will not encounter harddisk failures due to rough handling.

Other premium specs include USB 3.0, Bluetooth 3.0, and up to 6.5-hour battery life.

Monitors: 3D and Wireless

Samsung extends the “Smarter Life” philosophy to desktop monitors. Monitors are important to me, because personally, I use the PC more than I watch TV. 3D content is also fast picking up on the desktop, with 3D-enabled graphics cards and multi-core processors to deliver bandwidth-intensive games and movies. I never thought how desktop monitors can also be revolutionised to enrich our lives.

Samsung TA950

Samsung latest full HD 3D LED monitor Series 9 wows me with its unique asymmetrical design and supports full 3D content, or even converts 2D to 3D with ease. The TA950 ups the ante with built in Smart Hub features (as mentioned in the Samsung TV and Blu-ray sections), digital TV tuner, and speakers that support Dolby Digital, SRS TheatreSound HD, DTS 2.0 and 3D sound! This is certainly an all-in-one device that encompasses all of Samsung’s 2011 vision.

But my personal favourite among these products would have to be the Central Station Series 7 monitors. These monitors have built-in hubs which you can connect multiple devices to. The beauty is that all the devices – printers, keyboards, HDD, camera, Blu-ray players, LAN – communicate wirelessly via a wireless USB mini-dongle plugged to your laptop. Can you imagine that there is no need for you to plug wires onto your laptop everytime you get back to your work desk? With this wireless solution, there is no need to buy a separate docking station that only fits your laptop model.

Closing Off

Samsung mentioned that the 2011 products are created based on 4 guiding principles of the “Four As”: Access, Align, Amaze and Act. The way I see, “Access” is achieved with innovations like the “Smart Hub” feature so that consumers can access content beyond the TV. “Align” is about blending the products into consumers’ lives, as seen with the thin-bezel TV and the ultra-thin Series 9 notebook.
“Amaze” is delivered through improved 3D experience and end-user solutions like the wireless monitor. “Act” refers to being environmental friendly by reducing power consumption for Samsung new products, which in turn benefits the consumers with lower electricity bill.

I am overwhelmed with all the life-changing products that Samsung has announced for 2011. And here I am only talking about TV, Blu-ray and IT products. The mobile product line and camera offerings are equally exciting, which I will share in the next post.

Epilogue: Marina Bay Sands

The Samsung Forum has given me the perfect opportunity to step into MBS, albeit only around the Convention Centre area. On this Monday afternoon, there weren't many people, perfect location to enjoy some personal space of your own.

All photos captured using Samsung NX100 and EX1. Thanks to Samsung Singapore for nominating me as one of their Roving Reporters for the event. Join the Samsung Singapore Facebook page for more TV/AV/IT product news. More photos can also be found in the Roving Reporter page.

Labels: ,