People are increasingly eager to replace their single purpose television sets with new Smart TVs. Smart TVs are essential for the connectedness people crave with Web 2.0 content such as streaming media apps from Hulu Plus, DirecTV, and Netflix. Smart TVs allow people to log into their Facebook accounts and watch YouTube videos right from their television screens. Some people confuse Smart TVs with the late 1990s Web TV service, largely because of the name, but there is nothing similar about them. Smart TVs are all about providing more broadband content to consumers via apps and allowing them to connect to other computers as well. These connected devices are considered “smart” because they serve a wider range of purposes than a traditional television.
Television sets are not the only devices that fall into the category of Smart TV; certain gaming consoles, set top boxes, and DVD players are also used to provide “smart” features when used in conjunction with compatible non-smart TVs. For example, you can watch Netflix streaming movies via a Wii console, and with Xbox Live as well. One Blu-ray player allows people to choose from a variety of streaming media services including Amazon Instant Video, Vimeo, Youtube, Hulu Plus, Netflix, and others. Roku is a standalone device designed to make your TV smart by providing the same link-ups plus access to Internet TV channels and even original content.
The future of Smart TV is looking brighter, and smaller, as people long for integration among all of their content and entertainment services. Eliminating the need for multiple devices seems a natural line of progression. Perhaps we will see a day when, with the help of developers and a whole new kind of content licensing, one single device could be developed that would serve the purpose of many. Imagine this kind of Smart TV delivering all your games, movies, music, social networking, photos stored online, and nearly anything else you can think of. It would bypass the need for a Playstation because the TV would be the console. For many people this would be desired and highly convenient.
There would be some drawbacks however, and mobility is a major one. What if you want to take your Xbox with you to a friend’s house? You’d have to lug the whole Smart TV with you. Your family probably wouldn’t be happy about it either, since they depend on it for all their streaming media, too.
What do you think of Smart TV? Do you own one, or plan to buy one in the near future? Let us hear from you.
Melonie is a technology blogger who operates The Apple and Paw. To read more great articles about Apple, Android, and gaming, visit her site.