Samsung unveils new Smart TVs, chooses Red Bee for discovery

Consumer electronics giant Samsung is using the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week to unveil a range of new features to its Smart TV platform, designed to enable intelligent navigation and discovery of content.

Samsung’s key innovations for CES include Smart Hub and S-recommendation with voice interaction. The former comprises a five-panel user interface that enables consumers to navigate different types of content that are displayed as thumbnail images. Users can navigate between the panels via hand gestures.

The five panels comprise On TV, which shows the currently playing channel and personalised suggestions for shows that will air soon, Movies & TV Shows, highlighting movies and TV shows and other OTT content that is available from certain providers, Photos, Videos & Music, allowing users to organise their personal content, Social, highlighting user-created content from friends and family and popular Facebook videos, and Apps, featuring downloaded Samsung apps.

S-recommendation allows users to search for TV shows, video-on-demand, apps, social content and locally-stored content on personal devices via a recommendation engine. Another feature, AllShare, connects the TV to compatible mobile devices and home appliances wirelessly to turn the TV into a media centre that can also be used to enable home automation. Users can also mirror their TV content on compatible Samsung Galaxy tablets and phones. Samsung is providing an ‘evolution kit’ that can be slotted into 2012 models to upgrade them to the new features.

Red Bee Media meanwhile has been chosen to provide metadata services for the new range of Samsung Smart TVs across 13 European markets.

The multi-year deal will see Red Bee Media provide EPG content, including localised programme descriptions and images, to enable content discovery for over 2,500 channels in 23 languages across 13 European countries including the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the Nordic region.

Samsung also used CES to unveil a new range of TV sets that include what it describes as the world’s largest commercial UHD TV set – the S9, a 110-inch model that comes with an upscaling engine to convert HD or full HD images to UHD-level picture quality and three-way 2.2 channels of 120-watt sound.

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