Hisense launches high-tech TVs with quantum dots, lasers, Alexa
But will it be enough to compete against the LGs, Samsungs and even TCLs of the world?
David KatzmaierEditorial Director -- Personal Tech
David reviews TVs and leads the Personal Tech team at CNET, covering mobile, software, computing, streaming and home entertainment. We provide helpful, expert reviews, advice and videos on what gadget or service to buy and how to get the most out of it.
ExpertiseA 20-year CNET veteran, David has been reviewing TVs since the days of CRT, rear-projection and plasma. Prior to CNET he worked at Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com. He is known to two people on Twitter as the Cormac McCarthy of consumer electronics.Credentials
Although still awaiting his Oscar for Best Picture Reviewer, David does hold certifications from the Imaging Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Standards and Technology on display calibration and evaluation.
If you've ever read the brand "Hisense," it was probably on the side of an air conditioner or dehumidifier. But the Chinese company makes
, too, and it really wants your attention.
And it's using lasers to get it.
2018 Hisense introduced a full lineup of televisions that run the high-tech gamut, including models with full-array
, quantum dot color technology and compatibility with Alexa voice control. They even have an exclusive World Cup 2018 app, a partnership with Fox, that will offer live streams of the games from different viewing angles.
But the TV market is tough to crack, and players like Samsung and LG are more established, while Chinese rival TCL is growing like crazy. For Hisense to make an impression it will have to do something really special (and/or really cheap).
Squarely in the special-but-hardly-cheap category is the company's $10,000 laser TV, which is actually a short-throw projector with an included Screen Innovations 100-inch screen designed to reject ambient light. The projector itself has built-in speakers and Hisense includes a wireless subwoofer, too. The product was actually introduced in late 2017. Here's the rundown of its specs:
4K resolution with a Texas Instruments DLP chip
Laser light engine
Built-in Smart TV with apps
New for 2018 is Hisense's extensive line of actual TVs. All are LCD models with 4K resolution and various degrees of image quality enhancement. Many will be compatible with Alexa, like the 100-inch laser model, and most incorporate either the company's proprietary Smart TV system or
. Hisense didn't yet announce any 2018 Roku TVs, but says it will soon.
Video geeks will get a kick out of the highest-end model, the H10E, a 75-inch set that claims more local dimming backlight zones than any TV in memory: more than 1,000. Local dimming is the best image-quality enhancement for LCD TVs, and more zones generally mean better performance, but that's a pretty extreme number. I'm curious to see what impact it has on real-world image quality.
Here's the rundown. Pricing was not announced, and the sets will be available between March and April for most sizes.