Philips OLED+ 903 has a lot more sonic punch than the recent Philips OLED 803 thanks to a partnership with British audio legends Bowers and Wilkins.
Powered by a new second-generation P5 image processor with support for HDR10+ and Android TV, the visuals are impressive enough but the work by B&W on the sound side adds an impressive dimension. And there's three-sided Ambilight as well.
Launched at IFA 2018, the OLED+ 903 will be available in October in 55 and 65-inch versions. The TV features all-new drive units designed by B&W. “Certain things were fixed, like the dimensions,” says Bowers and Wilkins senor product manager Andy Kerr.
“But we could have [a lot of input] over a period of around nine months. That’s something we’re used to from our work in the automotive space where [we’re also] used to working with constraints.” B&W speakers are used in a variety of automakers’ high-end audio offerings.
Kerr suggested it was unlikely that it would bring its audio know-how to cheaper TVs. "If you think about the bill of materials, the overall cost..." Instead, Kerr suggested that its audio tech could come to other high-end TVs.
We heard a demonstration of several audio and video sources played through the TV compared with the predecessor 803 and there was a lot more depth to the sound and, certainly, in a sequence from Blade Runner 2049 there was a far more immersive sound with much clearer dialogue.
The 903 follows on from the recent OLED 803 now available in both 55 and 65-inch versions.
Philips has also announced an Alexa skill that will enable the voice control of its TVs. All Philips Android TVs from Philips' 2018 range and sets from the 2017 range with the P5 processor will be supported. Google Assistant will also be supported after a forthcoming update.