I’ve always been a big fan of saving energy, both mine and my household’s, but more for efficiency reasons that a desire to “save the Earth”. If there’s nobody in a room, it just doesn’t make any sense to leave the light on. If turning off unused devices helps reduce global power consumption, then so much the better.
Separately but relatedly, if a TV is on within earshot, then the TV is the thing I’m made to concentrate on. I simply can’t tune it out, and I don’t understand when people say they like to have it on for background noise. That doesn’t mean they’re wrong, I just don’t understand it. Unfortunately, it also means there’s a significant energy drain lighting up that TV screen for no reason.
But what if the TV screen could get dimmer when you look away, and return to full brightness when you start looking at it again? Enter the new Sony LX900 TV which has multiple settings you can employ to save energy when the TV isn’t the most important thing in the room.
Sony’s Intelligence Presence Sensor, a face detector that tells when a user has stepped away from the television and then dims the backlight, eventually switching itself off should the viewer not return. It also alerts the viewer to being too close to the unit and detects the position of a user to optimize video and sound balance.
Yes, the TV has a kind of camera in it, and it’s watching you. My optimistic guess is that the resolution is just good enough to recognize a face, not any one specific face, and that these images aren’t being uploaded anywhere. But I can’t prove any of that, yet.
Weird? Creepy? Practical? Do you want a TV that dims the screen when you leave the room or look away?
Sony BRAVIA XBR-LX900 leads the 3D charge, Mick Webb, Gizmag, January 8 2010
Published or updated June 7, 2010.