Technology – Android TV
So what is so special about Android TV compared to the standard android box or the Apple TV or the Fire TV. I am going to go through the benefits based on my Nvidia Shield box that runs Android TV but this is standard on any Android TV device.
1. The answer is in the name. Android TV is specifically designed for your TV. This means that apps that are available can be navigated using an Android TV remote. I know there are people reading this already saying that the standard Android boxes can be navigated in the same way. Yes, you are right but Android TV is so smooth and it really does look the part. I mean come on that is cool.
2. It has voice search for god sake, and it’s getting full google assistant. I know we are inundated with assistants in our phones and homes but there is allot to be said for pushing a button and just naming the film that you want to watch. Those same people are shouting again saying that a handheld keyboard is just as fast, now come on folks, you know you are wrong there. Also if you are running local movies through SPMC, the voice search will find those too. Awesome. I will get to SPMC in a later post but it really is brilliant.
3. Built-in Chrome-cast. This is where Android TV shines. There are hacks out there to get open-cast etc running on a standard android box but who has the time to be finding APK and manually keeping them updated. This works out of the box and it works super well. You can even google assistant your phone and tell her to put up photos. Its one step closer to Star Trek Computer. yahhhhhhhh.
4. The games. You can connect up a Bluetooth controller and go to town on the latest Android games on the 42 inch. It doesn’t have all the games that are in the Android store but the ones that it does allow you to install are all specifically designed for playing on the TV. There are more coming all the time.
5. All your standard Android apps are available, such as Netflix, YouTube (voice search is so handy on this), Hulu etc. I know you are saying that sure they are available on a lot of devices and you are right but it has them all as well as everything I listed about in one small little package. And if you are willing to take a risk, Terrarium TV is an interesting one to check out.
These last few are specifically for the Nvidia Shield but I am just throwing them in as I did say in a previous post that it is well worth the money.
Nvidia Games, This is a subscription service you can sign up for that will allow you to play higher end games over the internet. You need pretty decent internet to do this but if you are not the kind of person that was to drop 80 euro on a new PlayStation/Xbox game then this may be the path for you. The best feature though is that you can stream your games from a gaming PC onto your TV over your local network. That is pretty impressive.
Google Assistant is now available on the shield, for those with a google home in the living room, it’s not a massive jump but just showing that yet again the shield is the complete package.
SmartThings Link. This is the one I am most excited about. For those of you that are thinking about anything smart home, the smartThings hub is a must have, however, they are 120 euro which I cannot justify buying at the minute. Nvidia Shield to the rescue again. They have partnered with Samsung to bring the smartThings Link. Literally, a dongle that plugs into the back for the Nvidia Shield and makes it a smartThings hub. All that for 15 dollars. It’s not available here yet but god that is cool.
Anyway, that is my review of Android TV. I think its awesome but to each their own. Enjoy folks