Panasonic Life+Screen Smart TV: Can A Smart TV Actually Be Useful?

Panasonic is working on a new kind of smart TV that seems, at least, slightly less grossly useless than the typical smart TV ends up being once you connect it to, oh, say, anything. It's going to be in all the new Panasonic TVs this year.

Apparently Life+Screen will throw you right into favorite channels and programs, have facial recognition (like Kinect 2!), voice recognition, personalized voice recognition, and knows when you walk by and shows some news, weather, or other stuff. We haven't gotten to see the Life+Screen in action just yet, but it comes with the usual caveats that interesting new input technologies generally aren't super polished, and the idea that a smart TV would be the one to get it right puts a high strain on credulity.

The new models will include AX800 Series 4K LED that Panasonic claims will have plasma-level picture quality in an LED. (Again, we haven't seen it, but will have a dispatch from the show floor.) These will be 58-65 inches, and there's also an 85-inch 4k LED model coming.

Panasonic Life+Screen Smart TV: Can A Smart TV Actually Be Useful?

Panasonic is also edging a little into getting 4K into the business space, with a 4K monitor and Varicam (4K from 24p to 100/120). It's also got the 4K 20-inch tablet it introduced last year, but with an i7 a new NVIDIA GPU (last year's was an i5).

The 7-inch FZ-M1 Toughpad is another enterprise product, but I've always considered Toughpads—and most super rugged and durable enterprise stuff—just everyday products that are hard to break. Panasonic claims it's the thinnest and lightest fully rugged tablet.