(pocket-lint) – There have been many good TVs previously, a few of that are loads smarter than others, however none have actually satisfied us to surrender our Apple TVs, Roku bins, or recreation consoles. They’re nice for individuals who favor a tidier AV cupboard (or no cupboard in any respect), however there appear to be extra choices in numerous home equipment.
Nonetheless, the Philips TVs powered by the Android vary modifications that. From our demo on the IFA Shopper Electronics commerce present in Berlin, it’s clear that we have now entered a brand new period in good TVs, made potential with out including any set-top-box.
The entire firm’s new 4K UHD TVs will likely be Android-enabled, together with the 7900 Collection, 8900 Curved Collection, and 9100 Collection that we noticed in motion. All of them have a customized consumer interface based mostly on Android 4.4 KitKat, run on a quad-core processor, and a variant of Ambilight – Philips’ proprietary rear lighting system that broadcasts colours on the display to the wall behind the TV.
A part of the explanation and enchantment of Android as the principle working system is that everybody within the help set has entry to the Google Play Retailer in addition to Philips’ SmartTV app platform. Which means that Android apps appropriate for TV use will be downloaded and put in on the TV.
At present round 200 apps are supported. And whereas that is solely a fraction of the hundreds of thousands or extra accessible for Android gadgets, that is as a result of they should work properly on non-touchscreen gadgets.
With video games, for instance, most require help for Bluetooth or a linked recreation controller—such because the OnLive Common controller. Some may fit with gesture-focused distant controls, however additionally they must be transformed for first use.
Philips is closely selling the gaming performance of its new TVs, with Badlands coming pre-installed and in talks with Gameloft to have a few of its largest titles accessible proper out of the field.
Plus, the corporate not too long ago introduced a tie-in with the OnLive service, which additionally supplies direct entry to a whole bunch of triple-A console high quality cloud streamed titles.
Studying: Philips joins the curved TV revolution with its personal Extremely HD 4K set, provides Ambilight
Different apps, akin to Skype, work very in a different way on a pill than these required for a tv, so Philips deliberately blocks them from the Play Retailer and infrequently provides a devoted model on its App Retailer. TVs include a built-in front-facing digital camera and the distant has a microphone, so the app wants to acknowledge these components for them to work.
Different key options embody MyLiveGuard software program that may management your safety system, alarms, safety cameras and even a house automation package from the TV. Plus, it may possibly hyperlink to the MyLiveGuard app for smartphones and tablets so you possibly can entry it remotely.
You probably have a Philips Hue lighting system, you can even hyperlink it to work with the TV’s Ambilight perform, in order that your entire room modifications colours based mostly on on-screen motion. This was potential in older units, however can now be set by way of the TV’s menu.
And there is a separate Philips MyRemote app for iPhone, iPad, iPod contact, and Android gadgets that provides extra management over content material saved on the TV and its many consumer interface choices.
Every TV has 1.6GB of inside storage for the consumer to fill with downloaded apps, however that is admittedly small when contemplating the few video games accessible. Subsequently, an exterior supply will be linked by way of USB, both a reminiscence stick or a tough drive. This fashion as much as a further 64GB will be added.
By doing this, customers will even have the ability to pause, rewind and file TV reveals and these will even be options within the Android menu. One final function we observed was a recombination system in TV listings that provides you an concept of future reveals it thinks you may like based mostly on prior viewing habits.
Naturally, apps like Netflix and Amazon Immediate Prime will likely be accessible the place 4K streamed content material will likely be accessible. And the brand new TVs all have HEVC video help to let this occur.
The brand new 4K Extremely HD Philips TVs powered by Android will begin hitting the market within the third quarter of this yr, probably October we perceive. Costs are but to be disclosed.
Written by Rick Henderson.