The only departure is a subtle horizontal accent strip in the midst of the lower frame, running above the slightly curved bottom edge. The circular base of the swivel stand is rendered in the same glossy black as the panel.
The company uses an improved clicker compared to 2009, with more backlit keys and a larger "Menu" button, and we appreciate the well-differentiated layout. Its only downside in our view is an inability to control other gear directly via infrared.
Here's a look at the revamped VieraCast internet service interface. Just about every TV maker has Netflix, and when Panasonic turns on this feature in July it will join the ranks of "good enough" streaming. We'd still like to see the excellent picture quality of Vudu's HD service, found on many other makers' TVs, available too, but Amazon VOD has solid high-def picture quality in its own right. DLNA won't be missed by most buyers, and it's nice to see Pandora onboard to handle audio duties. New widgets include Fox Sports and Twitter, as well as a Skype option (all coming by the end of May 2010).
Panasonic TC-PG20/25 series VieraCast customization screen
Our favorite change is that the home page can be customized somewhat, allowing you to place the apps and streaming services you want on the first, second, or third page in any of seven slots arranged around the central picture window. Most other TVs' Internet service interfaces, aside from Vizio and Yahoo widgets, don't let you rearrange content to the same extent.
The TC-PG20/25 delivered excellent overall picture quality. Deep black levels were a strength, color accuracy was very good in THX mode, and the typical uniformity advantages of plasma over LCD--excellent off-angle fidelity, uniform brightness and color across the screen--were in abundant evidence. The main hiccup we encountered was the inability to handle 1080p/24 content properly.