Designers sort out TV positioning

This is part two in a series on TV design. Click here for part one: Escaping the armoire.

The flattening of TVs also offers more options for where, exactly, a TV can go in a room. Swivel brackets, movable stands or swimming arms allow guests to adjust where the TV should face.

Mike Scott, director of manufacturing at John Ralph Commercial Furniture International, complained that many designers only want the TV to face the bed or beds, and if it is wall-mounted, that prevents people seated anywhere else from watching. As such, he said, he likes to use "at least a swivel -- which is sometimes completely left out -- where the TV can be viewed from the desk." 

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This would not only increase the options for viewing, but as TVs become smarter and guest devices connect to them both with and without wires, people working at a desk may need to use the TV less for pleasure and more as a part of doing business. "I think that's where we're headed," he added.

Shannon Kim, director of design & technical services for Marriott International, agreed, noting that some hotels place the desk right below the TV. "This means we can't work and watch TV at the same time," she said.

Kim also pointed out the glowing popularity of connecting guest devices to the in-room TV, and the challenge this can provide to designers. "Finding or providing the universal solutions for various ports is essential as there are at least eight different types of ports in various laptop devices," she said, acknowledging that adding ports for guests to connect their devices to TVs may add to the overall cost of building the room.