updated 04:30 pm EDT, Tue September 23, 2008
GE to get into HDTV market
GE announced on Tuesday it will start selling GE-branded HDTVs as part of a joint venture with Taiwan's Tatung Company. The newly formed venture is called General Displays & Technologies (GDT), and will produce GE-branded HDTVs with Internet connectivity via an Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) connection. Eventually, say GDT executives, the idea is to allow users to download widgets and services straight to their HDTVs.
The new company also partnered with NBC Universal, of which GE owns 80 percent, with the aim of creating an open platform which users can use to download digital content. GE holds 49 percent of the shares in GDT, and promises the resulting products will be competitive with the best out there in terms of high picture quality, low energy consumption and features. The HDTVs promise to allow users view digital HD content directly from websites that offer it, while Internet browsing will also be made possible.
The first GE HDTVs are expected to come to market in the spring of 2009. GE last made CRT TV sets back in 1987, when it sold its home electronics business to Thomson, which retained the GE brand for a few years.