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184 posts

Master Geek


# 233749 1-May-2018 09:58
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It seems like every TV these days comes with all the apps - Netflix, Lightbox, Freeview etc, so is there still much benefit in getting an Apple TV or Chromecast?

I was thinking of updating my old Apple TV but because I plan to get a new TV later in the year (LG or Sony) and I wonder if I will still need the Apple TV?


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  # 2005726 1-May-2018 10:18
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Personally, yes, I would always go for the external device (be it Apple TV, Roku, whatever) because the apps are consistently updated. Smart TVs do not have a stellar record of maintaining support for the apps on their platforms. TVs are designed to last for up to ten years but the software support generally does not. Devices like Apple TV have an update cycle of every couple of years and their OS is being constantly updated too. Plus, if the one you're using becomes obsolete, they're much cheaper to replace than an entire TV. 

 

I'm still using an old Sony Bravia from about 10 years ago, but if I had to replace everything tomorrow, smart features wouldn't even be part of my replacement criteria - I'd just go for whatever had the best picture and get an AppleTV.

 

 





Geek girl. Freelance copywriter and editor at Unmistakable.co.nz.

 

Currently using: Modified 2008 Mac Pro, HP M6-1017TX Laptop, iPad Pro, iPhone 7, iPhone 6S, AppleTV4.


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  # 2005727 1-May-2018 10:18
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I have been looking at getting an ATV too and the only benefit I can see for us is that, if you’re in the Apple ecosystem like us, it makes it very easy to show your holiday snaps on the telly - straight from any iDevice. That’s cool ‘n all but not enough yet to convince me to get one. As you say, all the streaming apps are already on our smart telly.




Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


 
 
 
 


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  # 2005730 1-May-2018 10:20
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It depends on which TV you get...

 

 

 

Some Android TV's will have (semi) regular updates and staty current for a while - any that are running OEM software/firmware will likely be updated for a year then slowly lose smart functionality (like my Sony Bravia "Smart" TV).

 

The newer ones have built-in Chromecast functions, so that's a good thing, but for ease of use and longevity, I'd stick with a Chromecast or an Apple TV and get either a high-quality dumb TV or a new Smart TV AND the Apple TV...

 

 





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  # 2005743 1-May-2018 10:28
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littleheaven:

Personally, yes, I would always go for the external device (be it Apple TV, Roku, whatever) because the apps are consistently updated. Smart TVs do not have a stellar record of maintaining support for the apps on their platforms. TVs are designed to last for up to ten years but the software support generally does not. Devices like Apple TV have an update cycle of every couple of years and their OS is being constantly updated too. Plus, if the one you're using becomes obsolete, they're much cheaper to replace than an entire TV. 


I'm still using an old Sony Bravia from about 10 years ago, but if I had to replace everything tomorrow, smart features wouldn't even be part of my replacement criteria - I'd just go for whatever had the best picture and get an AppleTV.


 



This is a very point I hadn’t thought of. One of our smart TVs is 6-7 years and it appears Samsung have stopped updating/supporting the Netflix app on it. Maybe other apps too. Netflix runs fine on the TV but the app clearly lacks some of the features I see on other devices - eg auto-start next episode, skip recap and title sequence etc. Hmmmm.




Sometimes I just sit and think. Other times I just sit.


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  # 2005775 1-May-2018 10:43
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eracode:
littleheaven:

 

Personally, yes, I would always go for the external device (be it Apple TV, Roku, whatever) because the apps are consistently updated. Smart TVs do not have a stellar record of maintaining support for the apps on their platforms. TVs are designed to last for up to ten years but the software support generally does not. Devices like Apple TV have an update cycle of every couple of years and their OS is being constantly updated too. Plus, if the one you're using becomes obsolete, they're much cheaper to replace than an entire TV. 

 

 

 

I'm still using an old Sony Bravia from about 10 years ago, but if I had to replace everything tomorrow, smart features wouldn't even be part of my replacement criteria - I'd just go for whatever had the best picture and get an AppleTV.

 

 

 

 

 



This is a very point I hadn’t thought of. One of our smart TVs is 6-7 years and it appears Samsung have stopped updating/supporting the Netflix app on it. Maybe other apps too. Netflix runs fine on the TV but the app clearly lacks some of the features I see on other devices - eg auto-start next episode, skip recap and title sequence etc. Hmmmm.

 

Yes, precisely my point. You're probably never going to get the kind of software support on a TV operating system that you are on a dedicated media streaming device. It's not in the interests of smart TV manufacturers to keep updating their older models because they want to sell you a new one. Much easier to buy a new Chromecast than a new telly :)





Geek girl. Freelance copywriter and editor at Unmistakable.co.nz.

 

Currently using: Modified 2008 Mac Pro, HP M6-1017TX Laptop, iPad Pro, iPhone 7, iPhone 6S, AppleTV4.


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Master Geek


  # 2005887 1-May-2018 12:07
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I wouldn't trust any of the TV manufacturers (including the likes of Samsung, LG, Sony and Panasonic) to keep their stuff up to date, even for critical security flaws.

 

Do any of them even tell you how long support/updates will be provided at the time of purchase?

 

And does anyone think to ask?

 

It's probably much safer to block the Smart TV from the internet and use an Apple TV instead, especially once the TV is more than a couple of years old.    


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Master Geek


  # 2005890 1-May-2018 12:16
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I am using Apple TV and very happy with it. It is the 1080P ATV (still current version). It got auto update at least 4 - 6 times every year. You can never get that sort of software support from a TV manufacturer as someone has put it succinctly. It is not in the interest of TV manufacturer to provide long term software support. 

 

Apple TV has much better Apps support and arguably better usability as well. It also comes with a remote control by default. Money well spent in my view. If I were to buy a new TV, picture quality will be a priority rather than any smart features. 


 
 
 
 




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Master Geek


  # 2006095 1-May-2018 15:53
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Thanks everyone - ATV latest version incoming!

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Master Geek


  # 2006225 1-May-2018 19:55
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 I was thinking of updating my old Apple TV but because I plan to get a new TV later in the year (LG or Sony) and I wonder if I will still need the Apple TV?

 

I have a Sony TV with built in Android TV. If you only watch Netflix, Hulu etc. then Android TV is great and you don't need an additional box. If you want TVNZ OD or ThreeNOW you need an Apple TV. An alternative is Chrome casting from your phone to Android TV, but I'm not sure if TVNZ or TV3 apps support that.


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Ultimate Geek


  # 2006253 1-May-2018 20:37
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I bought my TV four years ago. About a month back I realised I'd never connected it to the internet (cause I've always had a HTPC and AppleTV connected) so out of interest decided to see if there were any updates available (firmware at least). There was none!


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  # 2006550 2-May-2018 13:53
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An ATV has a very high non Tech partner satisfaction score.

A couple of days ago she was very impressed that she could speak the title of a TV programme to the remote and it was found. Searching with tvnzbon demand)

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Master Geek


  # 2006555 2-May-2018 14:01
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Apple TV4 + HDHomerun + Channels APP = Best big screen TV Experience hands down.

 

 


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  # 2006557 2-May-2018 14:04
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I had an earlier "Smart" TV. A year or so after release Samsung stopped providing updates, and as a result it's no longer smart. I didn't buy it for smart features, I use Roku R.Pi for those features, so it didn't much bother me, but it's something to keep in mind.


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  # 2006566 2-May-2018 14:35
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eracode: I have been looking at getting an ATV too and the only benefit I can see for us is that, if you’re in the Apple ecosystem like us, it makes it very easy to show your holiday snaps on the telly - straight from any iDevice. That’s cool ‘n all but not enough yet to convince me to get one. As you say, all the streaming apps are already on our smart telly.


You say that you have all the streaming apps on your TV, but is this true for apps available for ALL regions.

We have an Apple TV, and love it. Where it shines is the ease in which it's possible to install apps from other regions (something other smart TVs & devices often struggle with). We currently use ours for Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Lightbox, TVNZ On Demand, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime, and it is reasonably painless to do so.


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Ultimate Geek


  # 2006588 2-May-2018 15:09
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We have an Android tv to run all local apps ie Lightbox Netflix NZ etc and kodi for streams, then a Apple TV 4K for US content that is region locked like Hulu, Netflix USA, HBO etc oh and Siri support through a US iTunes account.

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