3D TVs were the phenomenon of 2010, followed by Smart TVs in 2011, but how much do you actually know about them? A Smart TV is a TV which has the ability to connect to the internet by itself, giving you access to features you are more used to using on a mobile phone or laptop. Smart TVs are available in LCD, Plasma and LED and come in various sizes, many of them with Freeview HD built-in.
Features of a Smart TV
With a Smart TV you can download apps, similar to an Android phone or an iPhone – the kind of apps available including gambling apps, Catch-UP TV, movie apps and social networking. Other common apps include Skype, You Tube, Love Film and BBC iPlayer – the particular beauty of Skype on a TV is that it enables you to make a video call on the big screen- all you need to do is plug in a webcam to the USB port on the TV.
Connecting to the Internet
On a Smart TV you will find an ethernet port which allows you to connect to your broadband using a cable. Many Smart TVs are Wi-Fi ready too, so you can buy an optional wireless dongle which plugs directly into the TV and picks up your home Wi-Fi broadband. The more expensive Smart TVs have Wi-Fi capability already built in, so no need for the dongle.
Smart TV Remote Control
You’ll get a remote control with your Smart TV, as you’d expect with a TV, but with top end models from Samsung you would receive a touch remote – this has a small LCD screen which even allows you to watch a different channel to the one on the main TV. Additionally, you can use your Android device or Smart Phone as a remote control on some Smart TVs.
Other Features Available on a Smart TV
Smart TVs feature DLNA Digital Living Network Alliance technology – in basic terms, DNLA is a piece of technology which enables a wide selection of devices and gadgets to ‘communicate’ with each other, a bit like Bluetooth. In turn, this means they offer you the option to send music or photos to your television wirelessly from your mobile phone.
Access to the Internet from your Smart TV
Cheaper Smart TVs will not have an internet browser included so you would not be able to surf the internet as you would on a laptop, you would only be able to access apps. On the other hand, expensive Smart TVs will include a browser enabling you to surf pretty much any site from the comfort of your sofa.