Black and white analogue TV setWhat to look for when buying a tv, Terminologies explained. Television set, as it was formally called is one common device in our homes with over 7 million TVs in Kenyan homes…With digital migration, Television sets saw a metamorphosis from analogue to digital with a lot of design changes. That’s what we buy today.

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In my opinion, like any other electronic house hold device. It is important to know what certain terms  on the product or online store mean; The specs. We get lucky by consuming known brands which come with a longer  warranty (will explain later) and they are reliable. But we buy our tvs for way more reasons than just a warranty.

Online platforms like jumia, jiji, kilimall etc stock TVs at very competitive prices and wide varieties making some consumers get confused. Now, lets define some terminologies that will empower us in making choices on what to buy. Of course TV prices is a term we all understand.

When you open an ecommerce site selling TVs, the first thing you look for is the brand. It can be generic (not a known brand ) or a known brand “original”. But either way TVs come with a set of specs which we should understand before we make a choice.

  • Inches- 24″, 32″……105″ These are simply the display sizes for the TVs. we all want the largest possible but then again our budget and or the size of the room and its purpose can affect that that decision. The size of the tv is measured diagonally across the display screen.
  • Digital TV/ Smart TV. TVs processes a radio wave carrying video signals and converts it into images projected through the screen. Digital TVs process Digital waves carrying video signal from the broadcaster into images. The signals are transmitted through internet, satellite and cable connections. For a smart Tv, It has added features to help the user browse internet and to some extent touch feature. A smart tv can stream internet video content from streaming platforms like YouTube,, Netflix, etc
  • HD. High Definition(Resolution). This ranges from Half HD 1280×720 (HD), Full HD (1920*1080) and UltraHD (3840*2160) In simple terms it is the clarity of your screen. The bigger the better your TV will be able to project clearer pictures. HD and FHD are way too different! always check on the specs. There is a common HD 1366×768 on Generic TVs. But then again your budget is a factor.
  • 16:9 Aspect ratio. This defines how wide is the screen. Old version 4:3 was almost a squire. Most digital TVs are 16:9 in exceptions of ultra wide tvs
  • LCD, LED and OLED. Liquid crystal display (LCD) and Light emitting Diode (LED). These are very small projectors that display different colors that define color on screen. When these colors are mixed they define the image. The better the quality the sharper the image. OLED is the latest technology and better (Sharper Images) while LCD is the former.
  • Warranty. This is how long the vendor or the manufacturer is willing to support the TV after purchase. The longer the better. From one year should be good. Its is very important to ask if the warranty is based on shipping date or purchase date. Read the warranty carefully. Check on what the warrant covers. Most don’t cover power damages so ensure you protect your device from power surges. Again if the product has a local service center the better to avoid expensive shipments to and fro and long wait period.
  • Other considerations like usb pots and HDMI connections will make your TV easy to connect to external sources for video streaming and storage. Power consumption is also a factor when buying a TV but unlike their predecessors (CRT TVs) which consumed a lot of power, LED TVs have very low consumption rat.

I believe the above tips will help advice you on your TV purchase.


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