CES: iPhone-controlled HDTV mounts are go

Pasted Graphic 3

CES news is beginning to trickle through now, and we anticipate at least some AirPlay-enabled systems from the big audio dynamos will be waiting in the wings; meanwhile, WallWizard will be at the show to demonstrate its range of motorised iPhone/iPad-controlled HDTV mounts.
These things sound pretty cool: the mounts are motorized so you can adjust the angle of the TV to get the best possible view using a $10 iPhone app and a $160 Wi-Fi and Bluetooth controller. The mounts range in price depending on the style from $149 to $399.
“ControlWand’s user-interface is organized intuitively so that Apple and Smartphone users will feel right at home from the start,”
the company says. “The Control System’s advanced functionality and affordability significantly raises the bar in making television that much more convenient and fun.”

Video: WallWizard at CES WallWizard vice president of sales and marketing Craig Matthews talks to Maureen Jenson about the company's products, including motorized and non-motorized solutions.

Video: WallWizard at CES

WallWizard large-screen television mounts

WallWizard large-screen television mounts
The DM65, TA55 and SA52 manual and motorized mounts from WallWizard are designed to provide installers with a choice of products that address aesthetics, viewing angle and client cost concerns.
Pasted Graphic 2

Falling into the category of--"tell me something I don't already know"-- the prices of flat-panel televisions have fell so low that consumers have become very sensitive to the price of accessories to their TV purchases.

Knowing that no one wants to pay 35 to 40 percent of the cost of their flat-panel television for the investment into a mount, Calif.-based
WallWizard has introduced its latest additions to its product lines. The company's newly introduced $159 DM65 Manual Tilt Wall-Mount is said to help dealers addressing applications where the client wants their slim flat-panel TV mounted as close to the wall as possible. WallWizard says the DM65 works with TVs ranging from 42 inches to 65 inches, and it can hold weights up to 150 pounds.

The next product the company introduced is the TA55 Low-Profile Motorized Tilt Mount. This product is also a low-profile mount, but unlike the DM65, it adds motorization. WallWizard says this $300 mount can be used for install scenarios such as the placement of a flat-panel TV over a fireplace. The motorized TA55 includes an IR remote, an optical trigger and a USB port to support the company's ControlWand and Apple app accessories. The TA55 works with TVs ranging from 37 inches to 55 inches and it has a weight capacity of 100 pounds.

The last product WallWizard announced was the SA52 Motorized Swing-out Mount. WallWizard says this mount offers 90-degrees of swivel at the push of a button, and the $379 mount also includes the same IR, optical and USB provisions as the TA55 mount. The SA52 is compatible with TVs ranging from 32 to 52 inches and it can handle TVs weighing up to 80 pounds.

TV Mounts Helping Bolster Flat Panel Sales

With the custom electronics industry inching away from "hanging and banging" to survive, installers are looking for products that help them to grow their revenue streams.

WallWizard, manufacturer of TV mounts that debuted at CEDIA Expo 2010, says installers are interested in its mounts as a means of bolstering sales of flat-panel TVs.

“The fact that we don’t publish our MAPs [minimum advertised price] and leave the actual selling prices up to the dealer is applauded," says Craig Matthews, WallWizard's VP of sales and marketing. "With our suggested selling prices of our core motorized models from $149 to $429 and core manual models from $99 to $329, dealers can sell a motorized WallWizard mount at prices rivaling competing brands manual mounts, while still making substantial margins."

Matthews says the key for installers is to focus on how they can service client’s system needs. Matthews says installers should show clients how mounts can enhance their ability to watch TV.

Chris Wyllie, founder of Islandia, N.Y.-based integration firm
SEAL Solutions, says his company incorporates mounts into all of its sales to make the video category profitable.

Photos: WallWizard Motorized/Manual TV MountsPasted Graphic 1

“In today’s economy, every integrator understands that it is hard to make money on flat-panel TV sales," says Wyllie. "By using WallWizard mounts, it is a way for us to offer something different from what is available at big-box retailers. You will not find motorized mounts at the retail price WallWizard is offering. You can pretty much replace someone’s standard manual mount with a WallWizard motorized mount and get the job because you are giving added value.”

Wyllie adds that selling flat-panel TVs is like selling cell phones. “Stores do not make money on the cell phones, and we know that,” he says. “The accessories are where they are making the money. Similarly, TV accessories are where you make the money. If you are the store that has the really cool accessories, then you are going to be selling - and making - a lot more money.”