Hisense's CanvasTV is an affordable rival to The Frame

Mike Wheatley

China’s Hisense is launching an alternative to Samsung’s iconic art gallery-style TV, The Frame. Its new TV is called the CanvasTV, and it’s very competitively priced at just $999 in the U.S.


That price makes it more affordable than Samsung’s model, although buyers will of course want to note that the Korean company probably offers a much more extensive collection of artworks via its online store, having partnered with numerous famous art galleries to exclusively showcase their masterpieces.

If you’re unfamiliar with The Frame, it’s basically a TV that’s designed to be hung on a wall and look as if it were a regular piece of art when it’s not being used to watch TV shows or movies. Hisense’s CanvasTV is similar, in that it transforms into a digital picture frame when it’s effectively in standby mode.

The company has teased the launch of its rival to The Frame on a number of occasions, most recently at CES 2024, so its debut does not come as a surprise. In a press release, the company promised that the CanvasTV will offer a “curated word of free artistic masterpieces, with a collection of pre-loaded works spanning abstract, modern and renaissance styles”.

The key word in that statement is “free”, which is notably different from Samsung’s The Frame, where users are required to rent or purchase the artworks from its store, in addition to paying a higher price for the actual TV.

Hisense’s CanvasTV, will also allow users to display their own photos when the TV is not being used, which is another feature found on The Frame.

The $999 price tag is for the smallest, 55-inch version of the CanvasTV, and there’s a larger 65-inch variant also going on sale priced at $1,299, the company said. In comparison, Samsung’s most recent edition of the Frame is priced at $1,499 and $1,999 respectively, for the 55-inch and 65-inch models.

Consumers will have lots to weigh up though, because in addition to the different art catalogs and associated costs, the TV specifications are also slightly different. Like The Frame, Hisense’s CanvasTV comes with a 4K resolution LCD panel and quantum dots, and a matte finish that features a novel “anti-glare coating”. But that coating is likely to be different to Samsung’s, so an in-store comparison – if possible – might not go amiss.

In terms of connectivity, the CanvasTV comes with HDMI 2.1 ports that support 144Hz frame rates, plus Variable Refresh Rate and Auto Low-Latency Mode features that make it more suitable for gaming than standard TVs. The audio is provided by a built-in 2.0.2 speaker system.

The CanvasTV is powered by the Google TV operating system rather than Samsung’s Tizen, which may be another factor worth considering. Google TV is one of the best TV platforms around, with all of the major streaming apps such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video pre-installed, and support for Chromecast and Google Assistant, and its extensive Google Play app store.

Users will also be able to purchase different coloured frames for the CanvasTV, just as you can with Samsung’s The Frame. Hisense said it comes fitted with a teak-coloured frame, plus white and walnut frames that are also included in the box. The frames are simple to clip on, sticking to the TV through the use of magnets.

The CanvasTV will go on sale in the U.S. in the summer, but the company did not say if it intends to launch it in other territories. However, it said it will provide an update at IFA 2024 in September. IFA is the biggest consumer electronics event of the year in Europe, so it’s likely that it will be launch in at least some European countries in the wake of that event.

Hisense Americas and USA President David Gold said the CanvasTV represents the company’s philosophy of “melding premier home entertainment with modern design sensibilities.” He added that it has the ability to transform living spaces into an art gallery, with the “perfect balance of high aesthetics, exceptional technology and industry-leading picture quality”.