What is a Smart TV?
A “smart TV” is the home television equivalent of a Smart Phone. It’s a TV that accesses and displays Internet content along with conventional television channels. So in addition to the usual TV shows, you can enjoy additional web-based functionalities such as streaming video and music, using your favourite social networking sites or play mobile games on the big screen.
Typically, Smart TVs also support DLNA® connectivity for network access to your personal content: photos, videos and music. By downloading a free app for either AndroidTM or Apple® iOS phones, you can also use your smart phone as a TV remote control4.
What can I do on a smart TV?
Except for typically office-related products, Smart Tvs are very similar to a tablet or computer in the way that they offer you a vast array of entertainment and social networking possibilities:
- Video streaming: video streaming from popular sites like YouTube or more dedicated Video on Demand services such as Netflix or Hulu means instant access to hours of television at usually very low prices. Watch whatever you want, whenever you want.
- Games: many models will come with pre-installed games, and all of them allow you to download and play directly from your TV. While not as extensive as those offered by dedicated gaming consoles, it‘s an easy entry point to gaming for the whole family.
- Communication: with the addition of a webcam, you can connect to Skype and talk to friends and family while you watch them on your TV.
- Social network: access to social sites such as face book or twitter will ensure that you are always connected. If such private applications can success in a usually family-driven environment like the living room is still to be seen, but the possibility is there.
How do I connect my TV to the Internet?
In a very similar fashion to a traditional laptop or computer, you can connect them through an Ethernet cable or wirelessly to your wireless router if your TV includes this option. And while some won‘t include the wireless connectivity from the box, most will allow the possibility to buy an additional dongle to get connected wireless. Our advice is to use the wired connection if your set up allows it, as it will provide a better link.
Should I ultimately buy one?
That you can only decide. But if you are thinking of changing your TV, then we definitely advice that you purchase a future-proof and smart option: go for a smart TV.