Do you own a smart TV? | Connectedly

Do you own a smart TV?

By Adam Zeis on 10 May 2014 01:57 pm

In my pursuit to collect more and more connected tech, I've been eyeing up some smart TV options lately. My current living room TV isn't all that old, but I do like the idea of having a connected TV that offers more features beyond that of a standard unit — be it Netflix, Pandora or even social apps like Facebook and Twitter. At the same time, I'm not sure I want to jump from my overly-connected Macbook, to one of my many phones, then to my still-connected smart TV. I kind of like just having a TV be a TV — not one that keeps me even more connected.

Over the months and years ahead I'm sure that bigger, better, even more connected smart TVs will hit the market, so I'll have to give in at some point. I assume that eventually all TVs will be smart TVs as well — but for now we still have options. I guess that could be said for many of our household items — even appliances and toothbrushes.

So for now I'll just keep looking until I find something that really sways me. I'm curious however to know just how many of you have a smart TV, and what your thoughts are? Love it? Hate it? Impartial?

Drop your vote in the poll below, then hit up the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Related: Smart TVs Polls

Reader comments

Do you own a smart TV?


"Smart" TVs are at the place smart phones were several years ago: that is, semi-intelligent. Before Android and iOS, each manufacturer had their own menu system, apps, etc. and it was a huge mess. I probably have the same TV that Audemars02 has and the only smart feature I use is Netflix (because it's easier than going through the Blu-ray player.) What I would prefer is something, whether it's a box or the TV itself, that I can have an array of apps on (ABC/CBS/NBC News, CNN, WatchESPN, etc.) and watch that content when I want to. I hope this is what gets us away from the cable companies. I hope more and more providers of content (especially sports) realize they could probably make a lot more money to charge subscriptions to just their service, than if they were "bundled" with cable (and satellite) packages. I know I would pay pretty good money to get ESPN, the Tennis Channel, Comcast Sports Net NW, and NBC Sports if they were apps on my TV or box that I paid a subscription to...

I have one but limited use of smart features. We were using it to stream from a network drive but the drive died. We just got Amazon prime so now we use it for that. We also have a smart Blu-ray player and we could just use it. My advice is a good hdtv and then use smart Blu-ray or Chrome cast or something for Smart features. I worry about my TV not staying up to date and those boxes are easier to upgrade.

Can't bring myself to upgrade my TV because it still works great, but I have added a connected blu-ray player and other wireless media players to achieve the functionality.

Our living room LG TV is smart and connected and, until this article came up, I never thought of it as a "connected" device. With the Chromecast plugged in we have additional (and some duplicate) services. Our "cabin" has an older LG - not so smart, but with enough HDMI ports to support a connected Blu-Ray player and an Apple TV box running through the DSL router. Since we are out of any sort of antenna reception range, there is a basic service Dish Network TV box, too, that has been there for years. It's funny to realize we take these smart devices for granted, and have for a relatively long time.

I have a Toshiba smart TV that's a generation or two old now, it has a better Netflix use interface than the apple TV but the rest of the apps are lacking. I had hoped the software would be updated as I love the TV itself but wish the smart features were more capable.

Smart TVs aren't all that smart. They're dumb and don't get the number of updates or the amount of support that devices like an Xbox One, PS4, Roku, Chromecast, etc do.

I have a Chromecast and my PC is hooked up to my AVR, so I haven't really needed a smart TV. Just using a basic Toshiba 40" LCD TV for now.

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Thinking of owning a smart TV too, but with the smart TV OS so fragmented (Web OS, tons of proprietary ones), I may just resort to a chromecast and a normal LED tv...

Nope, no smart TV here. Still rocking a good 'ol Samsung 61" DLP and a Samsung 50" Plasma. I'm sure one of these days I'll be forced to update my TV but as of right now I'm just waiting for the 4K revolution to get cheaper.

How can the "Idiot Box" become smart?

That aside, Smart TVs are still a niche and have not appealed to the average consumer, not counting people who like showing off.

Currently, most people's needs can be curated using a Chromecast/Streamer/Apple TV

While I joke about wanting to have a webOS TV I don't think I'd ever really buy anything more than a great display. Here's the thing: why would I want an interface on my TV that introduces another way of navigating and more apps to download when I can just plug in a XBox, Apple TV, or Chromecast and have everything I want in a way that works perfectly with my devices? I've tried to use my father-in-law's smart TV and it made me want to claw my eyes out a little bit. For that matter, he doesn't like it either. On my recommendation he saved some money by buying a nice display and a Chromecast for his basement.

We have friends who recently bought a smart TV, they seem happy with it. I don't know how many of the features they use. As you mentioned though it's hard to thing of moving from s laptop or smart phone. It's interesting to read other people's responses because I feel that it really shows the value of the TV.

I have a Sony Smart TV but I think if I was in the market now, I'd rather see manufacturers release all their top end displays in both smart and dumb form so that I would be able to choose to either buy into their smart TV platform, or still get a fantastic display but pass off the smart features to another device like a Roku, Chromecast, XBox One, or whatever I choose.

I do but don't use 99% of the features because the interface is horrible. The tv is connected directly to an old desktop computer via HDMI which is networked. Stream and download almost everything I watch. Come on Supreme Court and give me Aero.

I own a Vizio smart TV. I love it as a TV, but the software is marginally better than the junky cable DVR. In fact, its Netflix app often crashes on startup so badly that I actually have to unplug the TV to get it back to doing anything. I've pretty much given up on all of the smart apps and rely on external devices (mostly Chromecast) for my streaming content.

I'm strongly considering a Fire TV, but I'm waiting to see what the new Android-based stuff from Google will look like. The only thing I can't do on Chromecast (yet) is Amazon video.

I've recently installed a Push2TV and run my BB10 to watch Netflix and whatever video I want. I also have a laptop on a dock connected so I use I as a computer screen as well. I haven't been attracted to the Smart TVs yet. I'll keep looking at them and when I see them offering so.ething that I can't do without then I will be getting one, or two....

My TV isn't a smart TV, but it has internet capability (which doesn't work and Samsung will not repair it). I don't really need a Smart TV. I agree with you, I really don't need a TV that is connected. I only have local channels and don't have time to watch all that much TV anyway.

I specifically avoided Smart TVs when I bought my LG a few months ago. In my case, it was a moot point because I have an Xbox One, which gives my TV its brains. Smart TV features would go to waste.

I do not have a smart tv. Our main tv is the one i bought when i graduated from college 7 years ago. Back then smart tvs weren't common so i didn't go for one. I think if we had to buy a new one we might look into a smart tv. It also depends on how usable they are though, the ones I have seen aren't that great. Plus, in reality, a smart tv only replaces 1 devices such as a Roku. We have tablets and computers that do the rest(facebook, twitter, etc) better than all the smart tvs I have seen

I do, but to be honest, if I could buy a good TV without the "smart" features I would. I never use any of them anyway as I get online content through either Chromecast or Roku.

I have one, but it wasn't much of a factor when purchasing. My family does like having a Netflix button on the remote.

I don't think smart TV's are that useful. Most are horrible at UX and there are settop boxes that are waaaaay better!

I have a smart bluray player, that is so far good enough. My monoprice hdmi switch takes care of the rest, until I can replace my dead amplifier. So, no,I don't see the point to having a smart tv, at least not for a media center. More in the bedroom, 32" range perhaps...

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I guess I have a samsung smart tv, but I never use any of the features, I use the xbox one which is much better at "smart" functions and streaming.

I am like you and would like to keep my TV just a TV... If I can stream from my connected phone to a HDMI dongle (say with a Cromecast) then would added benefit could a SmartTV provide? Not needing a phone... When would I not have my phone?

No smart TV here either...just smart devices hooked up to it. So much better then the slow apps I have seen on Smart TVs. They need to be "smarter" before I buy in.

I have a Samsung I bought a couple of years ago that does everything I need. Although, it has a ton of apps that I never use, so I wonder how they will build in more connectivity in the future to do things like the Chromecast does.

No smart TV. But am plugging in my Z10 via micro HDMI.

Maybe in a year or 2 I'll get one. Interested in the webOS tvs.

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I have a Smart TV as well as other components (blu ray and older TV with apps) but I don't see myself using it. I have my macbook, PC chromecast, Z30 and other gadgets to keep me connected.

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I have a "smart" Vizio TV, but the on-board apps are so slow and clunky that I use my Chromecast for Netflix and Hulu instead of the TV's native apps.

One not-smart Sanyo Aquos LCD that's 5-6 years old, and a new Phillips Smart-TV. Both do their jobs well enough.

I also use my Playbook and BB10 as Smart-TV substitutes. With the HDMI outputs on both devices, it's pretty easy to get a high quality movie or stream playing on the TVs.

I have a Panasonic plasma that's a smart TV, has an app store and apps. Really the only thing I use it for is the Amazon instant video. I actually haven't even really tried out any other apps, I think I tried YouTube once but the app was junk, besides I have a chromecast.

The Amazon app interface is nice and easy for my son and wife to navigate. It's much easier to use the app on my smart TV, than to turn on my computer connected to the TV and go to amazons website and pull up videos. Plus it plays HD content perfectly.

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I don't want a smart TV. They just offer redundant services to the Chromecast, Blu-ray players, gaming consoles and whatever other boxes a person might have attached to their TV. I would rather save money and get a nice unintelligent display.

Not currently, but i would have loved to have one some day. I saw one at my friend's place, and i gotta say they are quite convenient.

But Derek has brought up a good point though. When you wanna upgrade the smart component, you'd have to upgrade the whole thing. Whereas having a smart device plugged into your regular TV would allow you to upgrade your smart component/device without having to dump your favorite TV.

I love my smart TV, however lots of the functions that are not available in canada (Pandora, hulu, etc.) cannot be removed from my quick access menu and makes me think that my smart TV is really a glorified Netflix box...

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I have a 3-4 year old Panasonic plasma. It's a smart TV but pretty basic due to the age. I usually just use the smart features on other devices as a result.

I have 4 tv's all dumb. No need for a smart tv just yet. I have the roku 2 and 3. Chromecast, Xbox, Wii and blue ray players with apps. I have more than I need right now.

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Yes, but don't use the 'smart' part.. Love my Vizio .. just not all the sold on 'integrated' features.. To many things change to have to / want to upgrade my TV every single time a new system comes out.

So I use a Mac Mini w/XBMC and my Synology Box. I also use a Apple TV for Netflix.. Much more flexible.. I have Plex too, but it doesn't work with DVBLink like XBMC does for my Live and DVR'd tv stations. Most times I never need to leave XBMC except for Netflix.. XBMC gets Netflix figured out, I'll have a truly all in one system for Live & DVR TV/Recorded DVDs/and Streaming video..

I won't buy another HDTV without it being a SmartTV. This has gotten me WAAAAYYYY spoilt!
PS I own a Samsung SmartTV

No smart TV here, personally I just don't think there smart enough to warrent the extra bucks.

By that I mean if you want to game you need to plug in a console, to play Blu rays you need a player most of which have Netflix exs on. Personally I'd rather save on the TV and spend that on upgrading my console or Blue ray player.

On my dumb TV I have a Minix Neo X7 Android TV box with a 1tb hard drive a Moga game controller, web cam and mic a sky + box a PS3 and a Windows 7 desktop for PC gaming why on earth would I need apps on my TV.

Call me Mr Overkill, but yes I have a SmartTV, and it also has a FireTV, Chromecast, RokuXS, and an XBox all hooked up too it. Plus I usually have a USB stick plugged in to it with a few downloaded movies or a TV episodes.

For me a TV is just a screen. All the smart stuff can be done by other devices for which it serves as screen. Although I don't want to replace every two years, like you might do with your smart phone.

Yes but I've found Samsung's lack of surround sound support in its apps so frustrating that I use my PS3 for my streaming needs.
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I think I'm personally set with 2 Chromecasts, a Roku 3, Xbox 360 and One. I'm not sure I'd use the features on a TV.

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We have one of the four that we own. But, its in my wife's office room, since it was the last TV we bought. Our living room TV u see Chromecast.

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No. On one TV I've hooked up a Blu Ray player that has apps such as Netflix, Amazon Video, YouTube etc., and on the second TV I have a Chromecast installed. Those two solutions are sufficient for my household... For now anyway.

I do not. And honestly I'm not sure I want one.

I don't have a smart monitor — I have a monitor into which I plug my smart computer. I'd rather my TV be the same way, that way I can swap out the attached smart thing and not have to replace a perfectly good display at the same time.

That's good for now, but what happens when you want to upgrade the smart component of your TV, but you're satisfied with/don't want to spend money on the display?

It's just a firmware and/or app upgrade providing the manufacturer and content creators bother to provide support. That is the main issue with smart TVs going forward particularly as TVs tend to outlast other devices.

I know Samsung has been promoting their "Evolution Kit" which is essentially a removable card with the "smart" electronics on it. Hopefully LG and others have a similar option for their newer TVs as well.

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I own a LG smart tv from 2 years ago. Interface is horrible and I don't use 99% off the features it offers. In fact, I have chromecast plugged it that I use for Netflix, YouTube, HBO go, etc. The only smart feature I use is when my 5 year old daughter wants to watch Netflix because she can use the motion remote on her own and doesn't require a phone /tablet for the chromecast. I am, however, very interested in LGs new webOS TVs because they actually look user friendly and useful.

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