How to Buy Smart TVs Page 5


Smart and Smarterer

There’s no doubt that a lot of work is being put into making Smart?TV features more interesting, varied, and easy to use to draw consumers willing to spend for a set that goes beyond the basics. But maybe a basic TV is the better idea: one that acts as a dumb monitor to simply display video images, much like the one attached to your desktop computer. The key area that needs work is creating a replacement for the traditional clicker: Gesture and voice control are great features, but until they work in a fast, smooth, reliable, and repeatable manner, viewers will be quick to jump ship and dig out the regular remote. Smart TV obsolescence is also an issue — one addressed by plug-in hardware components like the Samsung Smart Evolution kit and Roku Streaming Stick. Despite the challenges, you should expect the new generation of TVs to hit stores in 2013 to be incrementally smarter than last year’s models, even if Smart TV ultimately does turn out to be a dumb idea.