Cello intros its first QLED TV

British TV manufacturer Cello is launching its first QLED TV, a competitively priced (£800) 55in model. It has also updated its smart TV platform, adopting Android 7 and introducing Cello Play, an alternative to Freeview Play with similar seven-day rollback EPG and integrated catch-up TV services.

The arrival of QLED marks a significant investment by the brand, which manufactures sets in north east England, and is a boost for the Quantum Dot panel technology championed by Samsung.

The Cello QLED is an ultra-thin edge-lit offering with a stainless steel central pedestal and metallic bezel trim, The screen sports a quartet of HDMI 2.0b inputs, along with twin USBs; there’s also a MicroSD card slot able to read storage capacities up to 1TB. Unusually, the remote control operates over Wi-Fi (rather than Bluetooth), and drives an onscreen cursor. It can also function like a standard pointer.

Cello confirmed to HCC that the television (named C55SFS4K) does indeed use Samsung QLED glass, but the rest of the set is the work of the British brand at its production plant in Bishop Auckland. 'We believe this TV is as good as its competition, and it’s available for a lot less,' enthused CEO Brian Palmer.

The onboard Android 7 Nougat platform offers a wide variety of apps, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and YouTube, the latter with 4K streaming. Other services include SkyGo, Now TV, VirginGo and BT sports.

The company insists its smart OS is the fastest on the market. 'You can launch apps and be watching them in less than 10 seconds,' says Palmer. 'Cello has invested significantly in research. We were the first to have catch-up on TV, iPlayer, and we don’t just do me-too products.'

This QLED model introduces Cello’s own smart programme guide, dubbed Cello Play, which promises seamless integration with the Internet Movie Database (IMDb), as well as YouTube, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, All4, My5 and UKTVPlay. 'We think TV set-top-boxes and streaming media players could become a thing of the past...' says Cello CTO Andy Bodan.

At the heart of the QLED model is a new AMLogic system-on-a-chip. Bodan reveals it is the silicon maker's first dedicated TV chipset, and that there's plenty of scope to do more with the architecture.

When it comes to HDR, the 4K QLED model is HDR10 compliant, but there’s no news about HLG support, although Bodan does say Cello is 'working with the BBC on 4K…'

The speedy Nougat platform isn’t exclusive to Cello’s QLED display. The brand will also be deploying it across a range of LCD TVs this Autumn, ranging from 24in HD models to a 75in 4K HDR LCD.