“Make things as simple as possible, but not simpler.” *
When my Asus Design Lab was asked to design Asus’s next generation LCD television set, Andres Oyaga-Loewy, Tom Risser and I looked closely at the user preferences and desires and decided to go against the grain by defining a user interface and creating a visual design language that had been unheard of in tellevision sets at the time.
Buttons only when you need them
The team found that the industry was still building in legacy controls on television sets, even though the buttons were hardly ever used by customers. Inspired in part by the Green Asus design guideline to reduce parts when possible, we opted not rid our TV set entirely of this interface, but decided that the on-television controls would not need to be visible at all times.
The Asus TLL 37 thus offers a unique user interface with a touch-sensitive area on the bezel that illuminates as a hand approaches and disappears when it is not needed, offering up power, volume, channel and menu buttons only when they are truly desired by the user.
Like any other television set, the TLL 37 had to fit into the living room of our customers and thus it needed to match the care and consideration of other objects found in that space. An important design tenet was thus, to create simple shapes and to use genuine materials without the need for extensive surface finishing. Bezel and back panel are made from recycling-friendly unpainted PC-ABS, front frame, stand and foot are made from metal (cast iron and anodized aluminium) and the fabric that stretches across the speaker area does not only make for a warmer sound, but also exudes a feeling of warmth in the living room.
* Paraphrasing Albert Einstein