Android TV and Google TV are two names currently floating around the internet with regard to smart TV platforms. Android TV has been around for a while, but with the recent unveiling of Google TV many people are asking – what’s the difference?
We thought we’d clarify things here.
Android TV is Google’s mature smart TV platform which has been around since 2014.
A major aspect of the platform is the ability to manage your smart TV apps. Apps are the focus on Android TV. They provide access to subscription streaming services such as Netflix, Stan, Disney+, Amazon Prime, and others as well as video-on-demand services. Additionally, they allow you to watch free-to-air streaming channels such as 7Plus, 9Now, ABC iView, and more.
The Android TV platform also allows you to manage TV features, preferences, settings, and external device inputs. It lets you download additional apps via the Google Play store. Importantly, though, it limits access to only those apps that will work with your specific TV model.
Overall, Android TV is an excellent and extremely usable platform for managing your smart TV and content preferences. And now the important bit – It’s not going anywhere.
The change from Android TV to Google TV
Google TV has been quietly developing over the last couple of years. It was officially announced this year, however, that many Android TV sets will be getting an upgrade to this new platform.
In reality, Google TV is a new and upgraded interface that sits on top of the Android platform. Android will maintain its role as an effective operating system whilst Google TV becomes the front-facing element for your TV.
So let’s look at some of the new features for the Google TV upgrade.
Primarily, Google has designed their new interface to bring content to the front-and-centre.
Content from all your streaming services will appear in the one location. No longer will you need to skip between different apps in order to decide what to watch; everything will be in one place.
Excitingly, Google TV uses Google’s sophisticated machine-learning algorithms to recommend new content based upon your previous viewing history. Once again, it accesses content from across all your streaming services and channels and presents them to you in one location.
An important feature of the Google TV platform is the ability to access it across multiple devices. Your viewing preferences and selections can be accessed on smartphone, tablet, or additional TVs. Plan your evening’s entertainment on your smartphone whilst you are out and about, with all your selections saved for later. Turn on your TV when you get back home and they’re all still there.
The platform also becomes your access-point for Google Nest smart home devices. Check out your video doorbell feeds easily from your TV or smartphone via the interface.
The Google TV platform also offers control over other smart home devices such as lighting. Imagine sitting down to movie night. Make your viewing selection and dim the lights without needing to move from your comfortable position on the couch. You can even do this using Google Assistant voice control devices such as Google Home. Watch out also for the smartphone remote control app due later this year.
The last feature we wanted to highlight is the Family Link. This allows you to control all age-based content for children and lock them out from inappropriate content or apps. What it can’t do is ensure you know more about technology than your kids, though, so watch out for this.
Your TCL TV
TCL smart TVs operate on the Android TV platform and will soon be getting an upgrade to the Google TV interface.
Speak with your local retail store or online seller about purchasing a TCL television and access a world of entertainment.