“Vidification” and Samsung’s Rosy TV Outlook

With the economy affecting all manner of consumer spending, it’s a little surprising to hear upbeat commentary from the flat-panel sector.

But according to Scott Birnbaum, vice president of Samsung’s LCD unit, its sales are benefiting from “vidification,” a term he uses to describe consumers trying to create a big-screen experience at home.

“When you went to the movie theater, you had this incredible picture and sound,” he says, and makers of televisions, PCs and even cellphones are all looking for ways to offer a similar viewing environment.

For PCs, manufacturers are quickly adopting a 16:9 aspect ratio, the length-to-height ratio that has been a standard for HD television screens, Mr. Birnbaum says. That means that laptops are becoming less boxy and more like wide-format TV screens, a trend that computer makers have capitalized on to goose sales. When one of these laptops is side-by-side with an older model, he says, “people are gravitating to the new format very quickly.”

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