Samsung's Frame TV masquerades as fine art

TVs often serve as the centerpiece of a living space, but perhaps your carefully curated home can't suffer a featureless black void on a bulky plastic stand when you're not appreciating the finest in motion pictures. Samsung's Frame TV just got an update for 2018, and it promises not to sully your walls with an impression of an Ad Reinhardt. Instead, the Frame can show content from Samsung's own Art Store, a collection of over 400 works from museums and agencies from around the world that's exclusive to the Frame.

When it's exhibiting artworks, the Frame can automatically apply a simulated "mat" to the displayed image to make up for the fact that it's a fixed-aspect-ratio canvas. The screen also does its best impression of a framed artwork with interchangeable edges in walnut, "beige wood," black, and white, and it hangs flush against the wall on its included mount like a picture would. For folks who prefer their objets d'art free-standing, the Frame can sit on a suitably spindly stand, too. To maintain the illusion of a mounted or free-standing artwork, Samsung uses its "One Invisible Connection," a thin, translucent cable that carries power and data signals from a dedicated enclosure that houses all the TV's brains.

As a TV proper, the Frame seems rather middle-of-the-road. It's a 4K LCD screen that doesn't use Samsung's latest QLED panel technology, for example, but it does support HDR10 content. Samsung's Bixby voice assistant stands ready to serve at one's beck and call, and motion sensors in the display ensure that the Frame only shows art when there are eyes around to appreciate it. With four HDMI ports and even FreeSync support, the Frame can be as cultured or coarse as one wants. The 55" version of the Frame starts at a Sotheby's-ready $1999, while the 65" commands $2799. Both versions of the Frame are available now.

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