CES 2009: Living television

Living TV at CES (CES)While the Internet is all a buzz with the recently expanded Netflix partnerships, it’s interesting to note that it may be the OEM’s who are opening the door to how television and content are experienced in the home. On the floor of the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show, more then ever before we are seeing the aggregation of technology and content solutions convening together to create “living devices.”

Beginning with Sony.   If you haven’t had a chance to play with Bravia’s Internet Video Link Module, please explore.  A separate box you connect to your Bravia,  Sony’s “walled garden” of content is a sophisticated aggregation of a number of content partners (Amazon on Demand, You Tube, Yahoo, Crackle, Blip and others) with the T-Bar navigation that first appeared on Playstation boxes.  Debuting at CES are Bravia models (XBR9 TVs)that have the module built into the monitor.  No need anymore for a separate box.  Your Bravia monitor provides its own content with the simplicity of a broadband connection.  In a recession economy, with people cutting their cable and satellite subscriptions, this monitor plus will provide hours of syndicated content for viewing pleasure…and all on demand.

Thematically, Panasonic is playing a similar game with their VIERA CAST plasma lineup. Two new PZ850 model’s are Internet enabled and can receive Web streams again without a separate set-top-box. You Tube and Google’s Picassa are some of the current content partners.

And from an interface perspective, CES is a glow with touchscreen.  Yesterday, Microsoft CEO, Steve Balmer unveiled Microsoft’s Window 7 software and included in that package is the ability for touchscreen interaction with your PC (see this demo video of using Microsoft’s media center with touchscreen).

LG also revealed some touchscreen TV model’s featuring interaction with Google maps.  You could literally lose hours navigating the earth that way.

And closing out the “living TV” trend is the re-focus on 3D technology.  Sony revealed a number of solutions for game play and broadcast 3D experiences now really bringing that television viewing experience “into” the home.