Technology company Lenovo have revealed the launch of their new ‘K-series’ of smart TV sets in its native country of China, with the move set to become their first entry to the TV market.
Powered by the Google Android 4.0 operating system, Lenovo intend the system to have access to a selection of over 1,000 ‘apps’ (including 40 that are pre-loaded) and ‘free on-demand videos’, amongst other features, though the former two are thought to have been the key focus by the company.
The products, first shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (USA) in January, are the completion of a five-year development process, and will be sold in 42 and 55-inch formats, both run on a dual-core processor.
The K-series’ flagship on-demand video service will be run in conjunction with joint-venture content library iSmartv, with access to ‘HD-quality’ episodes and films along with select 3D-applicable videos, while the library is said to be primed to host over 300,000 hours worth of of content.
The TV also seems to be built for gaming purposes, as the set is said to include video games that can be played by using the remote control as a Wii-style motion sensor handset. In addition, the smart TV will add a unique ‘finger swipe’ option to their remote (to switch between TV, on-demand, and app ‘modes’), allowing an additional method of control alongside voice and regular buttons on the handset.
While plans are in place for eventual international expansion of the K-series, Lenovo look set to currently focus on the domestic market, as they begin sales at 6,499 yuan, and peak at a price of 14,999 yuan ($2,378). Internal sales estimates for the device are said to be at 8 million for its first year, before reaching a Chinese sales figure of over 25 million within three years, while aiming for global sales of ‘162 million units’ by that point.
IDC analyst Antonio Wang said of their prospects: “In China, Lenovo has a big opportunity. They have a strong sales channel that can reach smaller cities and rural areas, and they have a well-known international brand.”
It is a very bold prediction for a company just stepping into the smart TV market that they will be able to sell so many sets, but with a popular name and a long-developed concept, and the proven Android OS, will their unique features help them reach their three-year targets?