Unlike last year's LM9600 flagship, the LA8600 will forgo a full-array local dimming backlight in favor of an edge-lit variety. While that seems disappointing from a videophile perspective, it's worth noting that the LM9600 was among the worst-performing full-array LED TVs we'd ever tested.
Available in a 60- and 55-inch size, it will feature all of the latest tricks including an onboard, retractable camera. LG initially told us it wouldn't support gestures or facial recognition like Samsung does, but at CES 2013 we were told that the 8600 would indeed it would include "finger gesture" control. We even got the chance to demo it (see the video). LG says the camera can also be for Skype other camera-specific apps.
LG Finger Gesture control
Aside from the camera, the LA8600 is basically identical to the LA7400 series. Both feature a 240Hz refresh rate, an edge-lit LED backlight with local dimming, passive 3D and all of the company's latest Smart TV features.
Search and control are two of the company's new Smart mantras and the TV will feature natural language voice control via the mic built into an upgraded Magic Motion remote control.
LG's Smart TV platform will also get an update with a customizable dashboard via the new "My Interest Cards." Sharing from tablets and smartphones has also been improved with WiDi (Intel) and Miracast (Android's wireless competitor to AirPlay), plus MHL (wired), and pairing via NFC (near-field communication). The new 'Tag On' feature will work like tapping phones together but instead the smartphone users taps against an NFC sticker on the TV.
The TVs also have an improved content recommendation engine called On Now that suggests content from on-demand and cable and satellite services via pop-up thumbnail images. A dual-core processor runs the show.
LG also includes its Cinema Screen styling, which denotes a thin bezel around the screen for the same kind of "all picture" look we liked so much in last year's LG LED TVs.
Pricing and availability are yet to be announced.