Why buy a curved TV? Curved TVs vs flat TVs
Curved televisions were once touted as the next big thing – so how to do they square up to standard flatscreens?
First introduced to the consumer market in 2013, curved TVs were heralded (by their manufacturers, at least) as the next evolutionary phase in mass-market television. Their extra-wide, panoramic-style screens offered a wider field of vision and a more ‘immersive’ experience for viewers. But curved TVs have since faded into obscurity. You’ll still see the odd curved set available retailers like Currys PC World, Very and AO, but they’re few and far between.
Read on to learn more about curved televisions: their pros and cons, and whether you should opt for one over a standard flat screen TV. If you’re thinking of buying a new television, but you’re not sure where to start, make sure you take a look at the RadioTimes.com best smart TV guide.
And if there are any hot discounts on any curved televisions, you can be sure you’ll find them over at our pick of the best smart TV deals this month.
Are there any advantages of a curved TV vs a flat TV?
Well, in principle, a curved TV gives you the benefits of a wider field of vision. The screen essentially fills more of the peripheries of your vision and offers a panoramic experience.
Unfortunately, curved TVs came with a raft of issues that never truly endeared them to buyers. Viewing angles were an issue: only if you sit directly headlong to the set can you properly appreciate that panoramic screen, whereas from the side the image looks distorted. Curved TVs are also much more reflective than standard flat screen TVs, which led to lots of glare issues.
The commercial failure of curved TV is a pretty familiar story. Ultimately, curved TVs were probably pushed onto the market by overzealous marketing teams, hoping to dazzle consumers with something that was far more a novelty than genuine innovation.
As a result, curved televisions have gone the sad way of 3D movies, flip phones and Betamax. The one exception is Samsung: although the Korean brand isn’t releasing any new curved sets, there are still a number of models available to buy online.
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Like all fads, curved TVs may well make a successful comeback. Believe it or not, there’s a TV in the works that will offer the best of both worlds: earlier this year, LG announced plans to release a bendable TV that will automatically curve inward at the touch of a button.
- Know you want a big TV? Take a look at our guide to Sony's new superscreen BRAVIA TVs.
Is a curved TV worth it?
In a word? No. Even if we were to put aside all those viewing issues that have plagued curved televisions, there’s the simple fact that the marketplace is saturated by a wealth of far better options at every price point.
Take the Samsung 55-inch UETU8300KXXU Curved 4K HDR TV. Spend a little less, and you can pick up the flat screen Samsung TU7100 HDR 4K TV of the same size, which features the same internal Crystal 4K processor and the same much-lauded Tizen platform.
Granted, it doesn’t have the built-in voice assistant, but if you’re able to go a size smaller (check out our what size TV should I buy article), then you can afford Samsung’s celebrated QLED tech line – check out the Samsung 50-inch QEQ60TAUXXU 4KQLED TV with Bixby, Alexa & Google Assistant. Simply put, there are better options everywhere you look.
The one exception we’ll make is for buyers who are also into gaming. If you’re keeping a hopeful eye on PS5 stock, and thinking about finding a TV to do the new console justice, then a curved TV might be good for you. Certainly, if you tend to play close to the screen, where that curved display will have most of an impact.
But, if gaming is your priority, then you might want to take a look at curved monitors instead, which are still enjoying success on the market. Samsung has a line of curved gaming monitors – take a look at the Samsung 24-inch CF396 Full HD Curved LED Monitor and the Samsung C24T550 Full HD 23.6-inch Curved Monitor.
Can you put a curved TV on the wall?
Yes – in terms of installing on the wall, curved TVs and flat screen TVs essentially use the same kinds of brackets. Just make sure you keep an eye for those marked as compatible with curved screens, like the Invision Ultra Slim Tilt Swivel TV Wall Bracket Mount, which is compatible for TVs between 24- and 55-inches in screen size.
Fortunately, the vast majority of TV brackets are universal across brand and are clearly marked with the screen sizes they cater for, which makes finding the right one much easier.
If you already own a curved TV, you might wish to consider a bracket with a swing arm, which lets you rotate the television to your desired position. You may want to read our how to measure a TV screen explainer if you’re figuring out where to install your bracket.
Read on for a list of retailers who sell wall brackets for curved TVs.
Where to buy curved TV wall brackets
You can find a range of TV wall brackets from the following retailers.
On the hunt for a new television? Don’t miss our pick of the best smart TV deals this month, or find something to watch tonight with our TV Guide. For the best deals, be sure to keep an eye on our guide to this year's Black Friday TV deals.