Samsung, content with their dominance in the world of regular super fancy, ultra high definition televisions, wants to make waves in interior design, too. And, when the angle is abstract as designing a television based on a font, you know we’re talking about high art.
Here’s a big surprise — it’s thick! It’s the thickest television we’ve seen in a while, but hey, it’s for a purpose. Samsung worked with Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, a couple designers out of Paris, to create a television that would be both a statement piece and functional (you know, besides being a television). The result is the Serif TV, a 40″ 4k television thick enough to make the top work as a shelf, a throwback to the days when that was just a standard television feature.
Why Serif? You’ll have to look at this TV from the side for that to make sense. The top and base of the television are thicker than the display itself, so when looked at from the side, it really does appear to be a capital ‘I’ in Serif. From the front, it has the look of a high-end picture frame, which isn’t an accident, either — Samsung suggests using the Serif TV as a digital photo album when you’re not watching TV, turning it into a genuine art piece.
Of course, looks aren’t everything. Samsung has made sure that this television is kitted out technically, even if it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of their most expensive TVs (which are very expensive, indeed). The Serif TV is a 4k smart television and does have Samsung’s HDR Premium technology, which brightens up certain colors to improve contrast.
There’s another oddity here that sounds like it could be useful. It’s called Curtain Mode — basically, the TV stays on, but the picture is dimmed, as if it was behind a curtain. In Curtain Mode, Smart TV basics like hubs, time, and weather can still be accessed, with whatever you were watching before lightly playing in the background. If you want a low-power way to keep the television on just in case some news breaks, here’s one way to do it.
Samsung is no stranger to designer televisions. At CES 2015, they showed off a TV on a pedestal designed by Yves Behar, something that was a lot more expensive than the Serif TV. The Serif TV is more for the design-conscious who don’t want to break the bank — at $1,500, it’s still pricey, but Samsung’s made much more expensive televisions. The Serif TV will come in white and dark blue and will be available at high-end retailers in August, and is available for preorder now from the MoMA Design Store and Samsung.