Even Charles Darwin would be amazed to see the evolution of how far the industry has gone to hide a television from view when it is not in use.
When we were kids, it was enclosed in a large stereo cabinet with folding or scrolling doors. Later came innovations such as lifts and ceiling dropdowns, followed by mirrored TVs.
The company, which also provides mirror TVs, offers HiddenReflections seven sizes, ranging from 22 to 82 inches. Price points will range between $3,900 and $10,700 with strong margin built in for dealers.
“The addition of a ClearView HiddenReflections Window TV will instantly improve the status of any residential or commercial property. For years we’ve made TVs disappear by turning into Mirrors, now our Window TV simply disappears,” says Brian Walter, president of ClearView. He adds that the units were very well received at CEDIA 2016.
Some of the details that integrators need to know are:
- The TVs install just like a standard window. Since there is line voltage involved, integrators will need to have an electrical license or partner with an electrician. Likewise, installing window panes is not a technical skill and pretty easily learned, but if an integrator doesn’t want to take on that installation, he or she will need to partner with a window specialist who can also perform the completed patchwork for stucco or clapboards in an existing home.
- At the show, Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based ClearView showed a unit using TFT technology, but the new TVs will be based on OLED technology with 50,000 hours of life. Those plan to ship in 6 months.
- The windows are powered using conventional 110V electricity but ClearView is looking into 24V power options for units over 50 inches.
- The TV produces 500 nits of brightness. Walter says higher nits are needed for viewing the TV from outside compared to inside. A common application might be the storefront glass of a commercial location so people strolling on the sidewalk can watch a promotional video loop. Walter and his engineers are working on an option that will flip the image so it can transferred for inside or outside viewing on the same pane of glass. We’re in the process of making the screen flip and reverse the image. So say you installed our window by the patio it would now double as your Outdoor TV,” says Walter.
- There is a small 8x2x4-inch control box with as 50-foot tether cord that accepts HDMI, USB and VGA. ClearView is working on units that will have two ports for HDMI and USB. The control box can be placed anywhere, in the rack, attic, etc., and using IR extenders can be controlled via the remote. Using the remote, the TV image is displayed on the home’s clear glass window. Press the button again and the window is clear again.
- The TVs can be fully integrated with home automation/control systems using hex codes.
- There is a slight amount of heat generated through the glass but it dissipates through the frame.
- The 22-inch unit is 720p, the 32- and 42-inch units are 1080p, and the 50-, 55-, 65- and 82-inch units can display 4K.
- ClearView Innovations is working on a double-hung window option.