Why Samsung has integrated an NFT aggregator in its new televisions

It’s easy to read Samsung’s CES 2022 press release and laugh at it. Maybe it’s the pictures of beautiful TVs you probably can’t afford to affix to designer concrete walls in spotless homes that you certainly can’t afford. Or maybe it’s the supermodels doing model things in these immaculate (and immaculately lit) homes. Or maybe it’s the idea of ​​a remote control without batteries. (Which is almost certainly not how it works, but it’s neither here nor there.)

Or, maybe, it’s the idea of ​​an “NFT aggregation platform” built into TV. It sounds crazy – to embed something that most people don’t understand, let alone engage – into a TV. Most of us can’t even describe what a non-fungible token is, let alone tell someone how to get one. It’s a multi-layered process that’s a lot more difficult than taking a screenshot of something you’ve seen on Instagram and then pasting it on your TV.

But that’s not the point either.

Samsung NFT aggregator home screen.
Samsung

Samsung is getting a head start on the NFT game, even if it doesn’t use the term NFTV, and that’s what companies like Samsung are supposed to be doing. And it does so in a way that combines its current products – televisions – which are already great ways to showcase digital art, whether it’s your children’s finger paintings or someone else’s. little more famous (but maybe not as liked). NFTs are just a confusing, horny, thrilling, and silly new way to own art, which in and of itself can be and often is absurd – just as art is meant to be.

“In 2022, Samsung introduces the world’s first on-screen TV NFT market explorer and aggregator,” the press release read, “a revolutionary platform that allows you to browse, buy and view your favorite works of art, all in one place.

It is that simple. He tries to create order out of chaos. Of course, this is the sort of thing you would expect to see from the kind of people you see in promotional photos – staring thoughtfully at whales or giraffes or polo players or water lilies or bored monkeys. – pay money to have the “only” or “original” copy digitally. But it’s also the kind of thing that really makes sense when your TVs double as digital art frames.

Image of polo player displayed on Samsung The Frame TV /
Who among us does not want to look in a marvelous sight, without socks, with a single origin coffee in hand, knowing that you own the only original digital copy of Polo Player On Horseback. Samsung

While the devil is in the details, Samsung has that, too, apparently. “With the new platform, you can preview an NFT before you buy it and even learn about its history – from who created it, to what includes its blockchain metadata.” And that’s the ball game. That’s what separates this software feature from the media viewer built into Roku boxes on a budget level for years. You can hold your brandy in one hand and your new Eco remote (remember it apparently has no batteries) in the other, and show your country club friends how you have the only Bored Ape Yacht Club. Existing NFT. Or something.

There is another, more cynical answer to all of this, of course. And is that when you’re announcing new TVs at a trade show that’s lousy with TVs, you need something to make you stand out. And what is the trend right now? TIC Tac. What’s the cooler trend that’s guaranteed to make the headlines? NFT.

Functionality is as much about getting people talking – good and bad – about digital art. It doesn’t matter whether any of us actually use this NFT market or not.

Samsung just wanted us all to talk about it now. Good game.

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