It’s not just Hisense with a new smart TV operating system this year, as LG previews what we can expect from its television OS.
When you buy a TV these days, you kind of expect it to do more than let you watch standard TV. You can always plug it into an antenna or a line that connecting you to the one on your roof, or even a cable box if you have one of those, but TVs do so much more.
They run apps, too, working in a similar way to phones and tablets, allowing you to get streaming TV from the web and watch feeds. That’s something you can thank a TV operating system for, as well as an internet connection, with the combination of these making them a “smart TV”.
But not every smart TV operating system is created equal, and there are some pretty big differences from the versions out there. While Samsung relies on its own operating system Tizen for its TVs and Hisense uses its own operating system VIDAA U, Sony opts instead for one made by Google, the same one found on the most recent Google Chromecast, Google TV. It’s a decision shared by select TV manufacturers, but not LG.
Like Samsung and Hisense, LG has its own operating system, something you can find on LG smart TVs since it was first introduced in 2014. Originally built by Palm and HP for tablets, webOS has become something made more for TVs, and a few years into being used across all of LG’s smart TVs, it’s now getting an update.
This year, LG webOS moves into version 6.0, upgrading the design so that it looks a little clearer and grid like, supporting voice commands for both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, and offering apps for major streaming services.
The LG “magic” remote plays a big part in webOS 6.0 we’re told, likely because there’s a new remote for LG’s 2021 slate of TVs, complete with an NFC-based function to allow people to share images and videos from their phones directly to the remote. From what we understand, you’ll simply bring the two together (likely with an app), and the combination of webOS 6.0 and the remote will make it work.
It’s just one of the features coming to LG TVs, specifically the new ones, though we’re waiting to find out whether LG’s previous models will get an update to webOS 6.0, too.
Right now, there’s no word on whether the 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, or even 2016 LG smart TVs with webOS will get an update, though the moment we find out, we’ll report on it. Our guess is that some will, but that it could take some time before it happens.