Global brand leader Samsung has just unveiled the world’s most curved TV—after a generation (human-being generation, not tech products) who knew no other TV but flat screen—last Thursday at the Nusa Dua Convention Center in Bali.
Also launched were what could be other game-changers in the home appliance industry, such as Food ShowCase refrigerator and the WW9000 washing machine, as well as the Galaxy NotePRO and TabPRO line of tablets.
But amid these to-lust-for innovations, what also stood out in last week’s event in Bali was what Samsung’s design team said at the forum after the media toured the product showcase. Design and innovation, the team said, are about “making things meaningful.”
Innovation, the design team pointed out, is “not dramatic changes, but about moving people.”
Indeed, in an age when everyone, including the very young, can hardly catch up with the dizzying whirl of technology innovation, how else do you capture one’s imagination (and budget)? What else is new?
It’s good to know that the design team behind Samsung is also looking beyond nuts and bolts, so to speak, way into what “moves” people. And, usually, what moves people is an emotion, a desire, a feeling, a want.
“Change everything but keep the heart,” the Samsung team stressed an oft-repeated line. How to touch the consumer’s heart is the constant challenge to the creative team, beyond the hardware of technology.
So, will the newly launched products be able to affect people?
The Samsung team noted that today’s approach to design is becoming more and more wholistic—“the line between function and visual communication is blurring.”
The products do not only have good aesthetic value—they’re pretty—but also have increasing functionality.
The ultra-high-definition curved television (UHD TV), at 78 inches, is the most curved TV in the world, with 4.2-meter radius for the perfect viewing experience—meaning the viewer will be at the appropriate distance. (The most common TV viewing distance is three to four meters.) It gives a wider field of view or panoramic effect.
Its UD590 monitor has detailed, high-pixel imaging and vivid colors. It can display a billion colors, or 64 times more colors than today’s monitor. Its technology can convert low-resolution content into sharper UHD-level images.
The Curved UHD TV is available at 78 inches, 65 and 55 inches. Television is a product category in which Samsung has led in the past eight years.
The Food ShowCase refrigerator has user-friendly zoning of stored goods, based on the needs of the household: cooking zone (upper level) for cheese and sauces; family zone (midlevel) for drinks and snacks; kids zone (lower level) for the young.
It has two door layers—the ShowCase for instant access of frequently used items; and the InnerCase for ingredients needing longer storage. The ShowCase section, which opens only the exterior door, is four times bigger than the regular refrigerator.
Zoning allows speedy search of food items. “Consumers want quick access to stored items without spending too much time looking for them,” said Boo-Keun Yoon, president and CEO of Samsung Consumer Electronics.
There’s an interesting design/function feature—the detachable lower cases can be set on the table. This is a plus for those who love to serve food and entertain guests.
The ShowCase’s metal cooling door keeps cooled air within the refrigerator. The All-Around Cooling technology evenly cools the entire fridge and the freezer. Cold air is blown out through multiple outlets at every shelf level. Thus, fruits and vegetables are kept fresh longer, and the freezer reduces freezer burn on frozen foods.
The Ice Master is built into the door, allowing extra space in the freezer and storage of up to 2 kg of ice. The ice case is detachable and can serve ice so that one doesn’t have to use an extra bowl.
A real beauty is the sleek WW9000 washing machine that embodies the less-is-more design mantra—no unnecessary lines, knobs and buttons. It has a simple, streamlined front with a ripple design along the side. It has a translucent deep-blue crystal finish, with the door creating an attractive spectrum of colors when it comes in contact with light.
“The time of hiding the washer in the basement or laundry room is gone,” said Yoon.
For easy loading and unloading of laundry, the door’s diameter is made bigger and the drum raised higher.
It has an intuitive five-inch color full-touch screen that enables the user to select settings. Its Most Used feature remembers frequently used cycles and washing options, for instance.
Its Auto Optimal Wash has four sensing technologies that gather information about the load size, degree of dirt and soiling, amount of water and detergent required.
Based on the information, the Auto Optimal Wash determines the best wash cycle, temperature, time, rinse cycle and spin speed. The Auto Dispense automatically gives out the right amount of detergent and softener.
Quite striking is its Smart Control, which enables users to remotely control and monitor the washer using an application on a smartphone. From the house or outside the home, the user can start or pause a cycle, and get notifications on cycle-time or when the wash is done.
It uses a unique bubble generator that activates as a normal cycle begins. The “ecobubble” helps dissolve the detergent to produce soapy form, so less hot water is required, thus saving energy.
This is one washing machine that identifies the dirt to be cleaned. Its unique feature is the six preprogrammed Specialty Cycles: Gardening (to clean grass and mud stains); Cooking and Dining (food stains); Hygiene Care; Active Sports; Active Kids; Working and Everyday.
The event also showcased the Galaxy NotePRO and TabPRO line of tablets. “We created the series to kick off a year in which Samsung truly establishes its leadership in the tablet market,” said JK Shin, CEO and president of IT and Mobile Design of Samsung Electronics.
The series combines crystal-clear display, powerful productivity tools, preloaded and free downloadable content.
It presents the world’s first 12.2-inch WQXGA widescreen display with crystal-clear resolution at more than four million pixels. This allows users a stunning, full-HD video experience.
Its Multi Window allows users to split the screen into four different windows—perfect for the multitaskers.
The Virtual Keyboard gives ample space to compose text comfortably.
Also unveiled was the air-conditioner with new triangle body design that allows for wider inlet, outlet and bigger fans.