People are adapting to this new standard of home entertainment, which has integrated so many devices onto one giant thin screen – Smart TVs!
Customers are blown away by a Smart TV’s crisp images and sound quality, but looking under the hood for the main feature, lies a ton of options and apps that someone without a lot of tech experience may find overwhelming.
Are Smart TVs easy or difficult to use?
Smart TVs are very intuitive and built for their customers to use easily and free of effort. Even customers who don’t love complicated technology can master a Smart TV if they are prepared, read the manual, and take care of their electronics.
According to Craig Hanks of Review.org, nine out of 10 TV purchases on Amazon are Smart TVs, meaning that this technology is taking over the TV market! You may find one of these in your living room very soon.
If you are interested in a Smart TV, check out our awesome guide:
How Hard is it to Use a Smart TV?
If you are a person who is quick to adapt to technology, you won’t have a hard time learning the ins and outs of a Smart TV.
For those who are able to get through the ins and outs of your smartphone, chances are, you can navigate through a Smart TV without trouble.
But, if you don’t have a smartphone and you don’t like computers, you may be in for a challenge to navigate Smart TVs.
According to Smart TV Club, one of the biggest drawbacks of Smart TVs is the learning curve that comes with it. The Smart TV user interface, unlike Smartphones, can vary across different platforms and TV brands.
A Smart TV made by one company would have an interface that’s different from another brand, so make sure you are reading your manual when you get your TV.
How Hard is it to Install and Setup for Beginners?
The first thing you need to do is to turn on your TV and connect the remote control to it.
Each TV will have its own set of instructions, which you can find in the manual of your device.
There are four things you need to know when setting up your Smart TV:
- How to find and select the installed apps
- How to access the inputs (i.e., voice, keyboard)
- How to install third-party apps
- How to access the settings
These will all be listed in your manual and usually are included in a step-by-step process when you first boot up your device.
What Comes Next?
Once you have figured those first four steps out, connect your Smart TV to the Internet, either through Wi-Fi or Ethernet, depending on what your TV requires.
After connecting, you can sign-in to the applications you may want to use, such as Netflix or YouTube.
The challenge in setting up a Smart TV is navigating through the interface and typing through your remote control. For example, if you are looking for a certain show on Netflix, typing with a remote can take a long time. This is why many Smart TVs will offer inputs such as voice-to-type or a keyboard.
If your Smart TV has Bluetooth or can support keyboard inputs through USB, you can connect a keyboard to the TV to make typing easier.
Get yourself familiar as well with the layout of the Smart TV’s interface. This will help you navigate around the various features and apps, and should make viewing less difficult!
Once you have gotten your Smart TV set up, you can also connect your other devices, such as gaming console, or Cable TV box.
Are Smart TVs Recommended for Seniors?
For Easy Tech Seniors, a technology blog dedicated to senior citizens, the biggest problem with Smart TVs is the learning curve.
Senior citizens may encounter challenges in setting up these hi-tech TVs to their liking, but that does not mean senior citizens can’t benefit from having a Smart TV.
One advantage of Smart TVs is that they come with very large screens. The median screen size of Smart TVs is at 43 inches, which is enough for the senior citizen viewer. These also come with loud and clear speakers, which make dialogue more audible!
Another advantage is the organized menus on the screen, which helps keep things categorized for easy viewing.
There is no need to scroll through a long list. You can view content by categories, or look up content through the search bar.
Which Smart TV is the Easiest to Use?
When it comes to ease of use, the LG webOS Smart TV has been widely considered the easiest.
Not only does it have an excellent OLED display and Dolby Atmos sound system, but it also provided easy navigation from different apps. It also boasts of a simple and clean interface, putting apps in a single row at the bottom of the screen.
The user experience is superb, as it is easy to find your apps, without worrying if an app was misplaced in another menu.
What Are the Biggest Pros and Cons of Smart TVs?
The biggest advantage of Smart TVs is how you can streamline your entertainment into one device.
You can view your YouTube subscriptions, watch live streams of your favorite sports, or have multiple viewing platforms for movies such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon.
Not only can you play movies, but you can also stream your favorite music through Spotify or set up a slide show of your favorite photos for family occasions!
Smart TV is perfect for having one centralized system for all your media.
The weakest link of a Smart TV is the Internet connection.
Unfortunately, the centerpiece feature of Smart TV relies on a good connection to the Internet. Even if you connect it through Ethernet, once your connection is down, your Smart TV will just be as good as an ordinary television, without the bells and whistles that make Smart TVs smart.
Apart from it being too reliant on the Internet, Smart TVs also track your usage or viewing habits, based on the apps that you will stream.
While it won’t look at what free-to-air channels or videos you watch through the built-in USB port, it tracks your viewing habits or activities. Apps like YouTube, Netflix, or Spotify will have a record of the media you have streamed on your Smart TV.
This monitoring is usually done with recommending other films or artists that you may be interested in, but it can also be used as a basis for the advertisements that are being pushed to the apps you use.
While you have a choice of what to watch on Smart TVs, you are still not always spared the commercials.
What Does a Smart TV Do That a Regular TV Doesn’t?
What separates a Smart TV from ordinary TVs is its ability to connect to the Internet.
With the different apps that you can install on your Smart TV, you have a choice of what to watch, when to watch, and even pause should you want to do something else!
This is something that free-to-air and cable TV cannot offer.
Free-to-air and cable TV keeps you dependent on program schedules, commercials, and limitations. Furthermore, you can’t pause a show or movie should you find the need to stand up from your chair.
Why are Smart TVs so Popular?
Smart TVs are popular because of their continuing evolution to become an all-in-one solution for entertainment while lowering the financial costs of your entertainment consumption.
As mentioned earlier, Smart TVs are packed with the ability to connect you to different platforms that cable TV could only provide a fraction for. This accessibility to media allows you to choose and pay which services you need, unlike cable television, which crams so many channels you probably won’t watch.
On the financial side, Smart TVs have become more affordable now, considering how much bigger screen sizes back then would cost.
Smart TVs that have screens above 50 inches are usually at the 300-dollar mark, which makes them very affordable.
Can You Convert Your Regular TV to a Smart TV?
You cannot convert a regular TV into a Smart TV, but you can attach a digital media player or streaming stick to give it Smart TV characteristics.
Many people who don’t have a Smart TV use gaming consoles attached to their TVs such as Playstation or Xbox to access sites like YouTube, Netflix, or Hulu. These digital media players and gaming consoles are connected via HDMI and have an operating system like Smart TVs.
These devices also have app stores where you can find apps that you want to use.
Like a Smart TV, these devices also need a connection to the Internet for you to stream media. They also come in two (2) form-factors: a set-top box, or stick, which is similar to a USB flash drive.
The most popular digital media players in the market now are the Roku stick, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV Stick, and Apple TV.