Android TV Overview Updated April 1, 2020

Android TV

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493 'Android TV' stories

May 2011 - April 2020


Android TV is a version of the Android platform which has been modified by Google to run on televisions with native applications. The platform was first launched at Google I/O 2014 and has since been updated several times, receiving a complete redesign in 2017.

Google has also built its Chromecast platform into Android TV, helping to bring more apps to the platform. As of 2019, though, over 5,000 apps have been brought to the platform with more arriving on a regular basis. Big names such as YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and many others all have native applications. Most recently, Amazon Prime Video joined the ranks with wider availability of its app.

android tv link bar

The Android TV homescreen running on a JBL Link Bar

Google Assistant is also integrated into Android TV with visual responses, tie-ins with certain apps, and control over playback. Some devices such as the JBL Link Bar even support Assistant as a traditional speaker or with always listening options on devices such as the Nvidia Shield TV.

On the consumer level, this platform can often be found in set-top boxes and built into full-size TVs. Popular set-top boxes include the Nvidia Shield TV and Xiaomi Mi Box S, while major TV makers such as Sony and Hisense often release models using it. These devices differ wildly in price and quality, but the software experience is largely the same on all of them.


Recommended Android TV devices:


 

google assistant on android tv

Google Assistant integration on Android TV

Another major source of growth for Android TV is the platform’s Operator Tier. While this won’t be found on the majority of consumer devices, Pay TV operators such as TiVo, AT&T, and others have used this option to create customized experiences for their customers, further extending the reach of the platform.

You can learn about the latest from Google’s platform in our continued coverage below.

Android TV Stories Today

Anker’s 4K ‘Cosmos’ projector ditches AOSP for Google’s Android TV

Projectors have become a fairly popular option for watching movies at home on the biggest “screen” possible. Some of them even pack Google’s Android TV platform. Now, Anker has announced that its upcoming Nebula “Cosmos” projector is adopting Android TV.

Android TV Stories Yesterday

Roku adds voice commands, finally rivaling one of Android TV’s best features

Roku is one of the biggest TV platforms in the US with a good portion of its success coming from a barebones, simple offering. Now, with Roku OS v9.3, the platform is adding wide support for voice commands, something Google’s Android TV has offered for years.

Android TV Stories March 11

For a long time, Google has had a restriction in place for Android manufacturers that mandates they can’t fork the Android platform without risking support for the Play Store and other Google Services. What you might not have known, though, is that Google also places that restriction on its Android TV partners, barring them from also producing models with Amazon’s Fire TV.

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Android TV Stories March 10

According to a reliable source familiar with the company’s plans, Google is planning to launch a second-generation Chromecast Ultra this year based on Android TV. The device is a dongle, much like the current form-factor, but there is one major hardware addition: an external remote.

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Android TV Stories March 9

March Madness is right around the corner and now, the NCAA’s official app is getting a huge upgrade for Android TV owners.

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Android TV Stories March 4

YouTube’s Android TV app tweaks UI w/ darker background, thumbnail borders

Like it does on smartphones, YouTube seems to constant want to tinker with its interface on TVs. Now, we’ve noticed a tweak to YouTube’s Android TV app that gives it a darker background and adjusts thumbnails, too.

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