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LG targets Rs 1 billion+ flat panel business by '07-end

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NEW DELHI: Electronics major LGE India Limited launched its latest product that gives the owners the kind of digital edge in home entertainment not seen in the country before: a TV set that allows “you to control time”, the company’s national product head, Prashanta K Das said at a press conference here.

Aiming at a market of Rs 1.14 billion “in the flat panel business alone by the end of 2007”, the slick LCD and Plasma versions of this latest from the LG bouquet is named “Time Machine”, and has a built-in 80 GB hard disk that allows between 33 and 20 hours of recording programmes.

The unique offer is the user can record any programme even if s/he is not at home or sleeping, and then watch it at leisure. There is option for replay, fast forward, slow motion, and even skipping irritating commercials in the recorded programme at your will “and a push of a button.”, Das said. “This is the only TV in the world that has an inbuilt DVD recorder,” announced Moon B Shin, deputy managing director of LG.

In fact, two programmes can be watched at the same time, one with a full-screen image and the other in a sufficiently-sized frame within the main screen, and one of these two programmes can be recorded.

One can watch a programme and record another one simultaneously, and switch the programme being watched without disturbing the recording. And like any recorded programme, too, one can go back to a favourite scene or piece of action at will ad as many times as one wants.

“The advantage is that there is no need for a separate DVD recorder and multiple remote control equipment,” Das said. Priced at between Rs 120,000 to 240,000 , Das claimed it gives a better option over the recording facility that DTH boxes allow, at a lesser cost of conversion.

During the spectacular presentation – with the new product rising from the background – Das said that the set automatically records any programme being watched – at one hour intervals when the TV set is on, but one can set it to a channel of choice, and programme the time and duration of recording using the remote control, and the machine will keep the recorded version ready for viewing when the user desires.

“It will store 33 hours of normal video quality and 20 hours of very high video quality, and you can delete previous recordings and record whatever new programme you want.” The company, in fact, is working towards making the hard disk upgradable. “So you can watch cricket while your kids watch cartoons,” Das said.

The gizmo uses “Clarofilter”, LGs advanced optical film filter which replaces the conventional glass filter in plasma TVs “to give brighter, sharper and anti-reflective images”, with 20 per cent improved contrast ratio and five per cent brightness improvement. The company claims that the TV offers the “world’s highest brightness” level at 600cd/m2. The other technical edges are the new XD Engine using advanced digital circuit, which ‘unites multiple processes at 3-dimensional levels to create crystal clear colour images’.

The technology used also converts low resolution images into hi-res ones and adjusts dynamic ranges of each scene to accurately redefine the image. The ‘image noise’ will be reduced using Spatial Noise Filter using multiple data analysis systems The “Hue-Saturation Control” controls the images to give appropriate feel and the “Colour Temperature Control” activates the UV Plot to separate colour domain to give life-like images, a company dossier on the new system said.

“Actually, the demand for LCDs are higher,” said Das. The company is confident of meeting the high target it has set because of a number of factors: consumer behaviour is supporting such target setting because the young consumers are spending substantially on luxury; secondly, the company is offering higher-purchase system, “which has done such a magical thing to the automobile market”; and finally the digital edge and the sizeable reduction in cumbersomeness of recording programmes at times when you aren’t there, or watching two programmes simultaneously are unique offers.

Besides, the new set will be just eight to 10 per cent costlier than the genre so long present in the market, Das said. “We also do not have any competition in this product, because we are the only ones to offer it,” Das explained. He added that instead of cash incentives for buying the expensive sets, the company will give a DTH appliance free with each set so that viewing is of even higher quality.

To meet the target of Rs 1.14 billion the company needs to sell 260,000 sets in the coming year. LGEIL has an expected target of Rs 90 billion turnover, improving vastly over its turnover last year at Rs 75 billion.Shin explained that company has detailed an elaborate marketing plan, and will unveil it in stages

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