GE launches global HDTV joint venture


GE announced the formation of General Displays & Technologies LLC (GDT), a new joint venture with Tatung Company, a global leader in display technologies. GDT will design, market and service GE-branded HDTVs to deliver the best home high definition video, audio and Internet experience. The first series of premium product offerings will be available to consumers in Spring 2009.

“We are developing advanced, Internet capabilities for content delivery to televisions, without the need for a PC. This includes Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) through cable, satellite and advanced fiber optic television connectivity,” said Marc McConnaughey, CEO, GDT. “The long-term strategy is to allow consumers to customize their viewing experience by downloading widgets and a variety of services directly to their HDTVs.”

In addition to offering HDTVs, GDT will partner with NBC Universal (NBCU), a leading media and entertainment company, to develop an open platform capable of delivering Internet and other digital content directly through the television.

"This is an exciting opportunity for NBCU to partner with GE and help design a cutting edge product that responds now to consumer desire for a seamless union of high quality digital content and Internet engagement, with an ease that still appeals to TV viewers,” noted Darren Feher, EVP & CTO, NBC Universal.

Ultimately this product will let consumers view digital HD content from popular websites directly on their television, coupled with clean in-synch integration with the preferences and personalization that makes the web so appealing.

GE is a 49% equity stakeholder in GDT, and as part of the agreement, GDT has entered into a new licensing agreement to market GE-branded HDTVs globally.