Between flat screen TVs, cable boxes, DVD players, wireless routers, and the not-so-wireless cords required to make everything function, the modern home entertainment center has become too cluttered for most people, or so IKEA is hoping.
The Scandinavian furniture and home decor company is proposing a solution to this problem -- and breaking into the technology industry at the same time -- with a new HDTV-entertainment-center hybrid.
"This is not a tv, and it's not a piece of furniture either," a woman says in the promotional video. "It's all in one, and we call it Uppleva." (For the linguaphiles out there, that's Swedish for "to experience.")
Essentially, if a TV and entertainment center had too much to drink one night and made a baby, it would probably look a lot like the Uppleva: the television essentially grows out of the furniture aspect, which houses the speakers, along with a DVD and Blu-ray player.
The TV also has internet capabilities and all of the cables are neatly stored out of sight in the back of the unit. The wireless subwoofer can be moved around, but all other components are accounted for in one piece. Perhaps best of all for those seeking to simplify the home entertainment experience, a single remote control handles all of the Uppleva's functions.
The flat-panel HDTV, which is manufactured by RCA, sports a full 1080p resolution screen and 400Hz refresh rate, ZDnet reports. When it launches later this year in Europe and next spring in the U.S., the whole package is expected to retail for around $960 and up, depending on screen size.
According to the Associated Press, IKEA contracted out a survey of 5,200 people in five countries and discovered that three out of four people would prefer to have less visible cables. Fifty percent of those people wished to have fewer electronics around in general, and 60 percent of those surveyed owned between three and four remotes.
“We’ve realized that people are watching more TV and are using electronics in their living rooms more and more,” IKEA spokeswoman Ylva Magnusson told the AP. “We came up with this because we found that people want to get rid of the cables and they don’t want those mountains of remote controls either.”
Like much of what comes from IKEA, the Uppleva is a "self-assembly" item. According to PCmag.com, "It's unknown if an allen wrench will be required to assemble your HDTV."