Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 25th Feb 2013 14:15 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes "LG said today it was acquiring WebOS from Hewlett-Packard, with the intention to use the operating system not for its mobile phones, but in its smart televisions. With the deal, LG obtains the source code for WebOS, related documentation, engineering talent, and related WebOS Web sites. LG also gets HP licenses for use with its WebOS products, and patents HP obtained from Palm. The financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed." Completely and utterly pointless. Smart TVs are a dead end. The TV should just remain a dumb receiver for input - whether from a computer or console via cables, or wirelessly from a smartphone or tablet. Our phones and tablets are already smart so TVs don't have to be.
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Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

What will happen in 3-4 years with a smart tv..

1) Try to plug in usb disk into 3-4 year old smart tv... Dang it doesn't support usb 4.0 devices
2) find adapter cable, plug it in.
3) Dang, smart tv doesn't support this new super codec.
4) Buy new smart tv($800) or converter box ($50) that has more intelligence than older smart tv.


You might have the same problems with a converter box,but you only paid $50 for it, and replacing it is incredibly more simple than swapping out your tv.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Bill Shooter of Bul,

Obviously I know what you mean, but...

"1) Try to plug in usb disk into 3-4 year old smart tv... Dang it doesn't support usb 4.0 devices"
"2) find adapter cable, plug it in."

To date, new USB devices have always been backwards compatible.

"3) Dang, smart tv doesn't support this new super codec."

Hell, you're right. But it's not just smart TVs at risk though, even mobile devices have this problem. Apple dictates that their users can not install google's webm format. Microsoft has an on/off relationship with support for the full mpeg family of codecs, but in their case at least desktop users have not been prohibited from installing 3rd party codecs (anyone know if their winrt tablet has codec restrictions?)

Fundamentally *if* the embedded computer were open, this wouldn't be a problem. But that's a quite large assumption; everything is going the way of walled gardens. As great as it would be for LG to buck this trend, I'm not terribly confident that they will.


"4) Buy new smart tv($800) or converter box ($50) that has more intelligence than older smart tv."

I honestly haven't found any network streaming box for NAS content at $50, more like $200 and that's only for something completely locked down. Might as well go for a full blown mini-board computer. However if I'm overlooking something obvious please let me know. It'd be fun to tinker with the raspberry pie, but in this case I'd be looking for something ready to use.

Reply Parent Score: 4

_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

Hell, you're right. But it's not just smart TVs at risk though, even mobile devices have this problem. Apple dictates that their users can not install google's webm format. Microsoft has an on/off relationship with support for the full mpeg family of codecs, but in their case at least desktop users have not been prohibited from installing 3rd party codecs (anyone know if their winrt tablet has codec restrictions?)


That is being slightly unfair. I am perfectly happy to rail against set top boxes (non portable devices) and their poor codec support, but I recognise the reality that mobile devices ultimately need fixed function hardware in order to support media due to lack of processing power and energy efficiency.

Seeing as ARM devices still choke on h264 1080p without a hardware decoder, I see this trend continuing especially as HEVC is on the horizon.

Edited 2013-02-25 18:19 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

3.0 did add a new connector, which isn't backwards compatible( The USB 3.0 Micro-B connector ).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB_3.0#Connectors

There are $50 network streaming boxes for nas.

http://www.roku.com/roku-products
$50.

roksbox channel
http://roksbox.com/home/

The $70 Wd TV play also works for those who want something to work out of the box.

http://store.westerndigital.com/store/wdus/en_US/pd/ThemeID.2198630...

Reply Parent Score: 2

galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Buy new smart tv($800) or converter box ($50) that has more intelligence than older smart tv.


If you didn't have a smart TV to begin with, you would still need to buy that $50 converter box. Other than the soon to be negligible increase in cost for the smart TV, what difference does it make?

I think everyone is missing this point - the "brains" for a Smart TV are

1. Potentially useful for quite a lot of stuff - streaming, airplay like functionality, basic web browsing, etc. And I expect new uses to emerge that make sense as well.
2. TV manufacturers will have the ability to update firmwares. They can make it faster, but they may be able to add features you didn't have before.
2. Have a cost that is rapidly approaching a effective level of zero.

I can easily see a lowend end ARM SOC with wifi and enough memory and horsepower to do basic stuff being a $20 component inside of the next 3 years. At that point, why the hell not?

Reply Parent Score: 6