LG showed off some eye-catching new TVs at CES 2019, starting with an ultra-thin, rollable display that pops up and vanishes with the push of a button. The LG Signature OLED TV R combines a speaker-filled stand with a flexible organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screen that literally rolls up when not in use.
Turned off, the OLED TV R looks like a coffee table or an empty TV stand. It’s a big silver-colored box about shin-high, with grille cloth on the front indicating built-in speakers. The top of the box holds a narrow rectangular, the only hint that the base is more than what it seems. Pressing a button on the remote makes the OLED screen pop up, unrolling from inside the base over about 10 seconds until it stands as a fully functional, flat 65-inch 4K TV on top of a speaker stand.
LG first showed off a prototype, rollable OLED TV at last year’s CES, but the OLED TV R is the first model we’ve seen that appears to be a consumer product (though LG has not yet announced pricing or availability). According to LG, the flexible OLED panel can handle 50,000 rollings and unrollings, or over 34 years of rolling and unrolling it four times a day.
We’ve been consistently impressed by LG’s OLED TVs in the past, since the panel technology produces perfect black levels and impressively wide color gamuts based on our lab tests. The W series in particular impressed us with its separate panel connected by a thin wire to the rest of the TV’s electronics (built inside a Dolby Atmos-equipped soundbar), letting users simply hang a nearly paper-thin screen on the wall.
The OLED TV R goes further with its rollable screen that simply disappears into the stand. As an LG 4K OLED TV, the OLED TV R has all of the standard features of the company’s flagship TVs, including HDR with support for both Dolby Vision and HDR10, LG’s webOS 4.5 operating system, and the Alpha 9 generation 2 image processor with ThinQ AI features.
The rollable OLED TV is 4K, but LG is still making the jump to 8K with two new, inflexible TVs.
The 88Z9 is an 88-inch 8K OLED TV, while the 75SM99 is a 75-inch 8K Nanocell LCD TV (Nanocell, previously called SUHD, is LG’s high-end LCD TV line). Both support Dolby Vision and Atmos, use the Alpha 9 generation 2 processor with ThinQ AI and webOS 4.5, and, of course, have 7,680-by-4,320 resolution with four times the pixels of 4K. They also both support WISA, a new wireless standard for multi-channel speaker systems.
LG has not announced pricing or availability for the OLED TV R or either new 8K TV, but they are expected to hit the market in the second half of 2019. This is a big start for 8K TVs, and could be a big start for rollable TVs. We’ll see how the three new TV models are received later this year.
LG also announced expanded features for its 2019 OLED and Nanocell TVs, including the non-rollable and non-8K models. All of the company’s new flagship TV lines will have Amazon Alexa support, accessible through the microphone on the TV’s remote with the press of a button, like on most Amazon Fire TV products besides the Fire TV Cube (which supports hands-free Alexa). The Alexa integration lets supported LG TVs function like a smart display or Fire TV device, showing information retrieved by Alexa on the screen and easily accessing Amazon Prime Music and Video content.
This comes a year after LG added Google Assistant to its flagship TVs, which remains available on 2019 models. The 2019 OLED and Nanocell LCD TVs also support the WISA speaker standard, letting users build their own wireless surround sound systems with an adapter.― PC Mag