Dell turns on its 17-inch LCD television

As promised, Dell introduced its first LCD (liquid crystal display) television Wednesday, pitting the company against a group of unfamiliar consumer electronics foes.

The Dell W1700 is a 17-inch LCD display that can be used as either a television or a PC monitor, Dell said. It will be available Oct. 28, and costs US$699.

Dell's new TV is priced less than models from other consumer electronics vendors such as Sharp Corp. Matsushita Industrial Electronics Co. Ltd. (better known as Panasonic) and Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV, said Christina Lawson, an analyst with ARS.

Most 17-inch LCD TVs sell for around $799 or $899, because most consumer electronics vendors sell their wares through retail channels, Lawson said. Dell sells its products directly through its website.

Dell's TV is a widescreen model, and is capable of a 16:9 aspect ratio format. The display resolution is 1280 pixels by 768 pixels, Dell said.

The unit's features are competitive with other 17-inch LCD TVs on the market, Lawson said.

It measures 11.6 inches high by 21.8 inches wide by 3.6 inches deep (29.5cm by 55.4cm by 9.1cm), and weighs 15.5 pounds (7kg).

Dell, along with other PC vendors such as Hewlett-Packard, have turned to the consumer electronics world to find alternative sources of revenue. PC shipments are headed back up after two years of stagnation, but the growth rates of devices like LCD TVs, digital cameras and personal music players have captivated PC vendors.

The company announced its entrance into the LCD TV market last month, alongside the unveiling of a new personal music player, an online music store and two new Axim personal digital assistants.

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