Our television died. There was no doubt about it - the picture faded in from the edges and then vanished, replaced by a blue dot and then nothingness.
We called the guy who helps us with things like these, and he came right over. He and TBG discussed features and measured heights and widths and then measured again. We went to Best Buy on-line and found the television he was recommending for $500 less than he was charging.
We bought it, arranged for delivery, and today men and machine converged in my living room.
One on a ladder, attaching and combining and reattaching cables to components of various capabilities, the other coiling discards and directing the cabling. For a while, TBG and I sat on the couch, but we drifted away when it became clear that the language being spoken was unintellligible to us. Random strings of letters were agreed to without question; we were clearly out of our league.
Fifteen minutes after the delivery men departed, our new 60" Samsung SmartTV was up and running. The next half hour was spent adjusting the picture and changing passwords and explaining. At one point there were 5 remote controllers on the coffee table. By the end of the installation, we were down to 2... and 1 if all we want to do is watch cable programming.
There is a small and lovely device which I admired, but which was consigned to the unnecessary bag despite my protests. I didn't care that much about it, once I convinced them to rename the HDMI icons to reflect what they were controlling. And really, denizens, I don't care that much about that, either.
As an aside, I wondered about boosting the wi-fi signal to the bedrooms on the other side of the house. Sure, I wanted him to do it... now??? .... why not... and soon thereafter we were the proud owners of a newly named network, with a simple to remember but hard for an outsider to deduce password, and 100% connectivity in the guest rooms.
If I'm going to be an enticing venue for children and grandchildren, it behooves me to be appropriately wired.
While all the setting up was happening, many features were turned on or off. We don't have a camera so the Motion Sensor was unnecessary. We're not looking for privacy locks or V-chip protections. But I was intrigued by the Voice Activation feature.
"You mean I could turn on the tv by talking to it?!?!"
Yes, it turns out that I can. It also turns out that that feature requires the television to be listening to everything that is said in my living room at all times, even when the tv isn't on, in order for it to be responsive when I say the magic words.
"Somebody somewhere is capable of listening to you at any time of the day or night. Do you know if they are recording and saving this data?"
Those were the issues Dave the AV Guy raised, and I had to agree; I gave up that feature because it was too creepy.
I don't want my tv listening to me.
No, I do not.