Smart TV growing in China (crienglish.com)

20 June 2012 11 h 28 min Comments Off

Nowadays, more and more people are using smart phones. But have you ever heard of a smart TV? You may wonder what a smart TV is, and how smart it is.

Besides the traditional TV manufacturers, IT companies such as Apple, and Lenovo, and the world’s largest search engine Google have already entered the field to grab their share of the growing market.

Your voice is all you need to turn on your TV, navigate menus and to view your favorite content. A simple gesture is all it takes to access your favorite movies, sports and apps. You can use your hands to control TV functions by swiping to navigate and grabbing to select. That’s right it’s a smart TV, which accesses apps through the Internet using interactive technology.

Although smart TVs are much more expensive than traditional ones, they are in growing demand.

“It’s convenient to download movies using smart TV. And I can install software in it, such as QQ and games.” “It can connect to a lot of things. I’ve bought two.”

But the smart TV industry is still in its infancy and many functions don’t always perform well, such as the voice and gesture controls. A woman surnamed Hu bought a smart TV in April this year. She has found that the smart TV is not as smart as the seller claimed it was. As such, a lot of the functions haven’t been used since she bought it.
“The functions such as the voice control are not convenient compared to a smart phone. I think the technology hasn’t developed enough.”

Sales statistics show that about 430 thousand smart TV sets were sold in 2010, and the figure went up to 3.4 million in 2011. It’s expected that 8.6 million smart TVs will be sold this year, and by 2014, the sales volume could increase to 25 million.

Industry insiders point out that it’s important for the TV manufacturers to cooperate with IT companies, because there are still few software applications designed for smart TV. For application developers, however, it’s not an easy job.

“A smart TV is different from a smart phone in regard to the resolution. We need to put much more effort into designing the interface. Smart TV has a different market than the smart phone. Smart TV’s audience is made up of the older people, housewives and children, and smart phones are mostly used by younger and middle- aged people. Therefore, we need to design different software.”

Despite difficulties, IT companies are interested in the booming industry, because it can give them a new platform from which the hardware and software developers benefit not only from the new applications, but also from advertising.

Hao Yabin, assistant secretary general of the China Electronics and Television Association, says that the smart TV industry has a vast potential market.

“If the content suppliers and the third party service suppliers are farseeing enough to expand their businesses into the smart TV platform as early as possible, they will definitely make a fortune.”

SOURCE: english.cri.cn (19/06/12)

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