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More LED LCDs, Internet-Apps From Vizio

Vizio will make its appearance at International CES as an official exhibitor for the first time this year by giving attendees a look at its expanded LED-based and Internet apps-enabled LCD TVs for 2010.

John Schindler, Vizio new products VP, said the company will focus on two main areas in its core TV business in 2010 as it showcases 40 to 45 new models.

One focus will be on LED-backlit TVs, which will expand from four models in 2009 to 15 models in 2010. Screen sizes in the LED assortment will range from 16 inches up to 72 inches, “covering every size in between,” Schindler said.

The second will be the expansion of products carrying the Vizio Internet Applications (VIA) functionality, which will be incorporated into almost every size class from 22 to 72 inches in 2010.

Vizio will continue to offer some models that use CCFL backlighting and omit VIA capability, he said, but the overall trend will be to step up with additional value.

In LED, Vizio will offer both full-array and edge-lighting approaches.

XVT series models in screen sizes measuring 42 inches and larger will include direct, full-array LED backlighting (called “True LED”) with Vizio’s Smart Dimming technology, while 32- and 37-inch XVT models will use Razor LED (edge-lit LED) and other technologies outside of direct LED, that also use Smart Dimming technology to improve contrast performance, he said.

The flagship of the lineup will be the 72-inch XVT model, with direct full-array LED backlighting, Smart Dimming, VIA IP functionality with built-in Wi-Fi support, 3D capability and 480Hz frame-rate processing.

While other manufacturers employ edge-lit LED lighting to achieve a thin panel form factor, Schindler said “the contrast is very poor, about the same as CCFL today, because it does not have Smart Dimming.” Vizio will be looking to improve picture quality in LED for the XVT line, he said.

For 3D TV, Vizio is looking to introduce sets that use active-shutter glasses in some of the XVT models, but will gauge its announcement on “cleaning up certain technology issues” before it proceeds.

In Blu-ray, the company will introduce a Wi-Fi enabled player capable of delivering Internet based content to non-IP-enabled TV sets.