Sharp’s 80-inch TV steals the show



They say everything is bigger in America and CES venue the Las Vegas Convention Centre is certainly proof of that.

They say everything is bigger in America and CES venue the Las Vegas Convention Centre is certainly proof of that.

But it was Japan's Sharp which used sheer size to wow journalists on press day, introducing what it claims is the world's first 80" 3D LED TV. After transporting the TV into the press conference on top of a car, Sharp said the gigantic LC-80LE844U has twice as much viewing area as a 55" set.

Sharp 80in TV

Size is only a fraction of its charm, though. It has built-in WiFi and comes with Sharp's revamped Smart Central system, which lets viewers gossip on Facebook while watching the soaps. But anyone buying this Sharp TV, which launches in the US in April, shouldn't expect a surge in their electricity bill - it costs about £15 a year to run.

The 80" model is just one of more than 20 large screen 60" or bigger Aquos TVs that Sharp is launching at CES.

Sharp has launched an ambitious customer support package with each of its new Aquos televisions. If you run into trouble with your TV, a Sharp employee can remotely connect to it for free and play with the settings until you're happy - and all for no extra cost. Clearly, Sharp is looking to add value to their products in a busy market.

The press conference closed with four or five models prancing around the packed meeting room, each with an Aquos Freestyle TV in hand. Between 20" and 60" in size, these lightweight TVs can be picked up and moved around the house with ease. They communicate wirelessly with your set-top box, so you could be watching Sky while getting a tan in your garden.

Elsewhere, LG said it plans to make TVs with 84" screens, but for now it was clever features and not gigantic displays that caught the eye. LG has developed a remote control with a microphone inside, allowing users to call out things they want to search for using Google TV.

Samsung also unveiled a TV with voice control - the ES800 - which comes with a built-in camera and dual-core processor power. The extra processing oomph should help the smart TV run apps at the sort of speed you'd expect from a smartphone, while the built-in camera is perfect for Skype.

The latest televisions will move from the press conferences to exhibition stands on Tuesday, when industry insiders get to grips with the new gadgets.