Published October 31st, 2016
It’s been a while since my last “the latest in TV technology” post, so I’m happy to once again give an overview of the most relevant news of the last few months. With the holidays coming up, many of the major platforms in the TV technology landscape announced and released updates to their hardware and software lineup.
Both Microsoft and Sony presented slimmer versions of their current consoles. Microsoft announced the Xbox One S and that it is working on a major upgrade called Project Scorpio, while at the same time releasing a major overhaul of its Xbox One operating system to move it completely to a Windows 10 base. Sony presented a slimmer version of the PlayStation 4, without changing the name and added the PlayStation 4 Pro to its lineup, while also releasing a big software update.
It is Nintendo where things are really interesting. While its current generation Nintendo Wii U is hardly selling, therefore Nintendo recently announced the new Nintendo Switch, which is to launch in March of 2017. The concept is quite different from the Xbox One or PlayStation 4, with a focus on being able to use the console with your TV and on the move. For those with nostalgia, it also released a mini rebuild of its old Nintendo Entertainment System.
Also hoping to do well during the holiday season, Roku completely renewed its hardware lineup, which now ranges from $29 all the way up to $130. That undercuts Google’s $35 Chromecast, even though it has a slow device. Google instead moved to more pricey heights, with its new Chromecast Ultra with 4K support. That leaves Apple TV as the only platform which does not offer a 4K option. Finally, Amazon only renewed its streaming stick and is planning a UI overhaul.
In the Smart TV space, Vizio was acquired by a Chinese company calledLeEco, which itself just announced a few Android TV devices for the US market. That old VCR you probably have connected to some old TV somewhere might become extinct. The last company that produced VCRs has officially ended production.
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