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Philips, CEBIT’2003. A full review of new products and technologies. Part II
Being one of the world’s leading manufacturer of LCD monitors, Philips is trying to find new applications for them. For example, the company offers to decorate boutique windows with such panels. High price of large size monitors will be quickly compensated, because these panels enable to show any commodity in details and conduct new types of advertising campaigns. Do you remember how Tom Cruiz in film “Minority Report” went by boutiques, where panels, which changed according to his tastes and displayed different clothe especially for him, were put? The technology, which was shown in the film is rather expensive today to apply it in reality, but its realization is possible. So, Philips tried to think about the future and pave the way for future sales.
Let’s turn to LCD screens aimed to houses and offices. The company showed LCD monitors, which supports Picture-in Picture technology. These monitors are targeted for workaholics, which couldn’t stop working to watch a football match or some other significant event. In my opinion it’s impossible to work and watch TV simultaneously, but, probably, someone could do it and this solution is demanded.
A new backlighting of LCD panels is really an innovation. If usual monitors have two lamps, placed on the upper and on the bottom part of the screen, points in new monitors are evenly placed on the screen. According to the company’s representatives, it enhanced sharpness of the picture and makes the monitor more reliable, as a risk to break both lamps is reducing. When there are one or several pixels errors, a quality of the picture isn’t deteriorated, as they are not noticeable to even the most casual observer. Retail price of this monitor is unknown, but the depth of it is two times more compared to usual LCD monitor.
Philips also introduced a new Light Frame 3 technology. I think that many of those, who have ever created presentations, had a problem with the graphical pictures. Attempts to adjust sharpness and brightness of the pictures, caused to reducing grayscales quality. It seems this question couldn’t be solved. But engineers from Philips broke all barriers. They built a special processor in a monitor, which analysed the picture on the screen and divided it in separate parts. Totally, it can select up to 16 fields, overlapped parts are removed from final picture. As a result, sharpness and brightness of the pictures can be improved while the text will remain of the same quality. This technology is very simple, but it was elaborated for a long time. By the way, when I saw a product after using Philips’ LightFrame function, I wished I could use it every day. One should see it to understand the difference.
To finish our description of “displaying” devices, I would like to tell about new Philips bSure 2 multimedia projector. It has conventional features but it is almost noiseless. According to the company, noise level of a working projector is comparable to noise, which you hear walking in the forest. To say the truth, I sat only 1 meter far from this device and didn’t hear any noise at all except a breath of my neighbor.
It was interesting to know about a new portable CD player with games feature. Now it supports only text games. But, nevertheless, this player can be a start point to develop completely new hybrid devices. The main features of the introduced player are typical to traditional players. It supports mp3 and has an antishock buffer. The peculiarity is namely the games.
This year it will be also possible to purchase DVD player – DVD760. Thanks to the use of a PCMCIA adapter, the Media Slot, placed on the front panel of this player, accepts multiple memory cards types. It’s obvious that this slot was done to be comparable with all digital cameras. Digital Photo Manager allows to view photos on the TV screens, create slide shows of favourite pictures and rotate images. This program is compatible with the usual DVD-disks, using of expansion slot is not necessary.
DVDR80 is a model for those, who don’t like compromise decisions. This device enables to record mpeg2 files and support many other extra possibilities, for example, viewing disks archives. It has an enhanced menu type and a possibility to preview one or another part of every record on the disk. In my opinion this device has the most outstanding features for today. But may be I am making a mistake; I am not a specialist in this field.
Continuing the DVD players theme, I would like to tell about a hybrid device, which is called JackRabbit. A small box includes DVD-ROM, CD-RW and MP3/CD-player. This device has several standard slots and it can be connected to both PC and consumer electronics. So, it is almost universal. A standard kit also includes a remote control. This solution targets users who would like to have all devices in one.
The aim of this article was not to describe traditional products, and each new one, but only the most interesting ones from our point of view. All described above and other products will be available on CEBIT. In the end I would like to publish photos of one competition, which was hold between journalists. Czech journalist won the tournament, may be it was fair as the championship was hold in Prague. We kindly thank Russian representation of Philips for excellent organization of our trip.
Published 17 February 2003
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