As we first sat down to get some perspective on the really quite ridiculous amount of water that’s gone under the AV bridge this year, we expected to conclude our discussions and marinations feeling pretty chipper. But actually, once we’d properly digested everything, it was hard to shake a feeling of slight disappointment. Or at best, uncertainty.
This annoyed us, because if there’s one thing we hate it’s the ‘trend’ for industry commentators/AV websites to be miserable cynics all the time. We at TrustedReviews make no bones about the fact that we love technology, and are endlessly excited by it.
However, in looking over 2010’s TV and projector technology as a whole, it seemed to us that for once, maybe the AV world had innovated too much. It felt as if the TV brands had tried to introduce so much new stuff that they’d ended up fumbling some of it.
Or perhaps a better way of looking at it would be to say that some of the innovations have felt a bit rushed, as if a desire to compete in one of the toughest economical years in modern memory has led to a desperate charge to rush things to market even when they’re not quite ready.
Actually, on reflection we and other journalists have to shoulder a little blame for this, as we’re always the first to whinge if we find a particular TV lacking a hot new feature, thereby feeding the industry paranoia.
Not that there’s any point us feeling guilty about this, though. It’s really just a side effect of the ridiculously fast pace of today’s Internet-driven world. So in keeping with that ethos, let’s put the pontificating aside now and get down to the business of reliving the highs and lows of what we believe will be considered a real watershed year in AV technology.
So far as we’re concerned, 2010 was distinguished by having no less than four major separate lines of technological innovation: online TV systems, Freeview HD, and LED backlighting and 3D.
Obviously, two of these ‘innovations’, online TV systems and LED lighting, didn’t make their full debuts in 2010. But 2010 was, crucially, the year they both went mainstream, going from being expensive premium tech found on only a handful of flagship TVs - or half-formed ‘toe-dippers’ - into fully formed, dominant technologies at affordable prices.
Let’s focus first on the most striking, potentially most revolutionary and certainly most heavily hyped innovation: 3D.