Sony's R550 LED TV plays nice with DirecTV, NFC

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/ Updated: 8 January 2013, 12:21 pm AEDT

Sony

LAS VEGAS--Sony's TV range for 2013 is smaller, some would say "more focused," than in years past, but the company is still including select innovations in even its midrange KDL-R550A series.

This TV plays well with others, namely satellite provider DirecTV and any ( non-Apple, thank you very much ) tablets and smartphones with near-field communication (NFC) capability. Its RVU (I looked, but I have no idea what that stands for) compliance means "DirecTV customers with the Genie Whole-Home HD DVR can access their set-top box, DVR, and on-demand services right from the KDL-R550A TV without the need for additional equipment." Sony assured me that DirecTV doesn't charge an additional fee, monthly or otherwise, for the TV to access the box.

Meanwhile, NFC means you can easily "pair" your smartphone or tablet with the TV to perform all sorts of futuristic entertainment acrobatics. The TV can mirror any content on the phone's screen, for example, with the exception of some rights-protected material, via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Sony also offers a mobile app called TV Side View that serves as a "second-screen" hub, integrating IMDb, Twitter, and the like. The app recognizes what you're watching via communication with the TV and can serve up relevant information or a canned tweet like "OMG 'Homeland' FTW!" for example.

Beyond those fancy extras is a full helping of Smart TV, including the Sony Entertainment Network of course, and the company says the interface has been improved ( it needed it ).

Like Sony's 4K models , the R550A has passive 3D (two pairs of glasses included). It comes in screen sizes of 50, 60, and 70 inches. It also has an edge-lit LED backlight and no local dimming. I also have to assume there's at least a 120Hz refresh rate , but couldn't yet confirm those or other details.

Sony also announced a KDL-R520A series that is the same, minus 3D.

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Where to Buy

Sony KDL-50R550A

Part Number: KDL-50R550A
Pricing is currently unavailable.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Regional specs shown for US. AU specs are unavailable.

  • Enhanced Refresh Rate 240 Hz
  • 3D Passive 3D
  • LED Backlight Type Edge-lit
  • Display Format 1080p
  • Diagonal Size 55 in
  • Type LED-LCD
  • Network connectivity Ethernet
    Bluetooth
    MHL
    Wi-Fi
  • SmartTV Yes