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Philips 8900 adds a splash of AmbiLight colour to curved TVs

Tom Morgan
4 Sep 2014
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4K resolution, Android smart TV system and three-sided AmbiLight backlighting? Yes please.

Philips and TP Vision have pulled back the curtain on their first curved TV, and judging by the extensive specification sheet, it's going to be something special; the Philips 8900 is a 4K Ultra High Definition set, powered by Google's Android operating system and equipped with three-sided AmbiLight for creating an even more immersive viewing experience than other curved TVs.

The 55in set sits on a metal "ribbon stand" that curves out behind the set, giving the impression of a floating screen and letting the LED light show from the three-sided AmbiLight system cover the maximum possible area for big impact. For anyone unfamiliar with the system, Philips' unique AmbiLight LEDs illuminate the area around your TV with colours that match the action on-screen, effectively tricking your brain into thinking what you're watching is spilling out of the TV. We've been blown away by its effects in the past, and can't wait to see how it performs on a curved set.

It's not all style and no substance, either. The 4K, 3,840x2,160 resolution panel is backed up by a 1,000Hz Perfect Motion Rate refresh technology, Micro Dimming Pro LED backlighting, Perfect Natural Motion image smoothing and Ultra Resolution upscaling technologies, and is capable of active 3D video too.

You'll have plenty of content to put those pixels to good use, as the smart TV system is powered by Google's Android operating system. With access to the Google Play Store, and all the apps, services and content it lists as suitable for TVs, you shouldn't have to wait for support to be added for your favourite streaming service; simply download and install it to start streaming. You'll get a full Chrome web browser, dedicated YouTube app, Google Play Music streaming and on-demand content from Google Play Movies, as well as the usual suspects like Netflix.

A remote control with Wii remote-like mouse pointer, full QWERTY keyboard on the back and integrated microphone for voice commands should make it easy to navigate the Android UI, find the content you want to watch or even play full-screen games.

The curved Philips 8900 is expected to go on sale throughout Europe and Russia later this year, although TP Vision isn't yet ready to discus pricing. We'll be taking a closer look at the set in person later today here at IFA, and hope to bring you a full review a little closer to launch.

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