55-inch, 4K, 16:9, the rest is TBD
Samsung now makes the biggest, curviest, you-have-to-see-it-to-believe-it PC monitors out there; two Verge editors recently replaced their multi-monitor setups with a single 49-inch Samsung Odyssey G9 when it went on sale for $999 the other week. But the company’s not satisfied simply filling your horizontal field of view with 49 inches of real estate — today at CES, it’s revealing an even bigger 55-inch curved screen with a special stand that lets you flip the gigantic monitor vertically, so the screen curves right over your head.
It’s called the Samsung Odyssey Ark, and the company is pitching it as a real product that it’s planning to bring to the United States in the second half of the year. We don’t have a price or firm release date, though the panel apparently features quantum dot color and Mini LED backlighting. It’s not even clear if the Odyssey Ark is aimed at gaming, productivity, being a fashion statement, or all of the above.
Details are so light that I’m going to share the entirety of what Samsung sent us with you:
Odyssey Ark is a next-generation flexible monitor perfect for people doing everything from editing to gaming at home. The Ark is the new industry-leading gaming display with a curved 55-inch display and 16:9 aspect ratio.
The HAS (Height Adjustable Stand), pivot and tilt functionality, in addition to advanced ergonomic design, offers every gamer optimal comfort. This new vertical cockpit-style rotating display provides a new gaming experience and allows portrait or landscape orientation for multi-tasking and multi-window setup.
Multiview options allow users to adjust Odyssey Ark exactly how they want it with a totally adaptable screen size to fit the game or the program without compromising its 4K display and bright, colorful images. The monitor also features a wireless, dial controller to manage lighting and the interface.
With a 16:9 aspect ratio, it wouldn’t be quite the same as those earlier super-ultrawide 32:9 monitors, even though the curve looks much the same from here. (Does that mean it’s just a very curved TV? Not quite, but TVs and monitors are getting WAY closer these days.) The traditional aspect ratio could help with the stretching effect I saw in games and less wasted space around movies and shows.
Having reviewed a pair of these super curved monitors now, I originally struggled to think of a reason why I’d want to turn one vertically. But seeing how it looks in the real world, courtesy of Tim Schofield, definitely reveals more of the Odyssey Ark’s multitasking potential.
Let me know if other good reasons occur to you? (LG Display’s curved OLED throne could also use some vertical screen ideas.)
Here’s a picture of the Odyssey Ark’s dial controller and the huge horizontal curve, by the way:
Samsung also introduced a smaller 4K version of its Odyssey Neo G9 this week, a 32-inch version called the Odyssey Neo G8. We’ll let you know when the Ark has more details.