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What’s on Samsung Smart TV? Apps, on-demand TV, voice, gesture and smartphone control

What is Samsung Smart TV?

Latest news for Samsung Smart TVSamsung Smart TV collects together features including voice, gesture and smartphone, apps, web browsing, and universal search via voice, remote control or a wireless keyboard.

There are apps including Netflix, iPlayer and YouTube, signature services such as fitness, family and kids’ learning, and you can share video, music and photos to and from the TV over your home network.

Some Samsung Smart TVs also come with a remote control featuring a touch-pad, and there are remote control and sharing apps for selected Android phones and tablets.

Samsung’s most expensive smart TVs can be upgraded with new processors to add new smart TV and performance features, thanks to a detachable TV Evolution Kit.

Samsung Smart Hub UI 2012

Which Samsung TVs have Smart TV?

In 2012, Smart TV features are available on Samsung Series 5, Series 6, Series 6+, Series 7 and Series 8 LED TVs

Which Samsung home entertainment devices have Smart TV?

For Blu-ray players, in 2012 you can find Smart TV on the BD-5500, BD-6100, BD-ES6000, BD-ES600E, BD-ES7000. It’s also on the BD-E8300, BD-E8500 and BD-E8900, which are Blu-ray players with Freeview HD hard-disc recorders.

Samsung also has three HD hard disc recorders with Smart TV: the STB-E7900 and E7500 for Freeview HD, and the SMT-S7800 for Freesat HD.

For 2012 Blue-ray home theatre systems, Smart TV is on the HT-E4200, E4500, E4550, E5200, E5500, E5530, ES4200, ES6200, ES6600 and ES8200.

Which catch-up TV services are on Samsung Smart TV?

BBC iPlayer and ITV Player apps can both be downloaded to Samsung Smart TVs.

Which video-on-demand services are on Samsung Smart TV?

Lovefilm, Netflix, Acetrax, PictureBox, and Blinkbox all offer pay-as-you-go and subscription film and TV services on Samsung Smart TVs. You can also watch free videos on YouTube, Vimeo and Dailymotion.

Two unusual apps are Digital Theatre's catalogue of live performances from British theatres, and Curzon's extensive library of new and classic independent cinema.

Which games are on Samsung Smart TV?

In addition to motion-controlled Angry Birds on the Series 7 and higher models, all of Samsung's Smart TV comes with a fun pack of arcade, puzzle and brain-teasing games from Playjam.

Which social networks are on Samsung smart TV?

You can make Skype video calls from your Samsung Smart TV, using the built-in HD camera.

Family Story is an app that lets you share photos, messages and personal clendars with your family across email and social networks.

There are also dedicated Twitter, Facebook and Google Talk apps that let you interact and comment on social networks, and a new Social TV feature for watching tweets and status updates while you watch live TV.

How can I get more apps for my Samsung Smart TV?

The Samsung TV App store for the UK has 30 apps in video, games, sports, lifestyle, information and education genres.

Can I control my Samsung Smart TV with my smartphone or tablet?

Samsung Smart TV tablet remote app

There are two key apps for Samsung Smart TV displays and home entertainment devices: the remote app for older Internet@TV equipment, and Smart View for Smart TV equipment from 2011 onwards.

The Samsung Remote app gives you full remote control capability, including a trackpad. It works on selected Android phones, although not all Samsung phones (usch as the Galaxy s3). It’s not available for the iPhone or iPad.

The app is available specialised for phones and tablets. Nearly all of the Samsung 2010 and some 2011 TV models are easily compatible with the Samsung TV Remote App.

For 2010 TVs these are the LCD 650, LED 6500, PDP 6500 and higher models. For 2011 TVs, models equal to or better than the LCD 550, LED 5500, and PDP 5500. For Blu-ray and other home entertainment devices, models above the D5300 Blu-ray player or BD-HTS D5000, plus the BD-AVR D7000 and BD-HDD Combo D6900/8200/8500/8900.

Samsung Smart View gives you remote control, including Bluetooth power-on, trackpad and gyro control for games, and lets you stream live TV from your TV to your phone or tablet over your home network. Blu-ray home cinema systems can adjust audio features and PVRs can schedule recordings remotely. Smart View also comes in both phone and tablet versions.

TV compatibility begins with the 2011 LED 7000, PDP 8000 and better models, and in 2012 on the ES7000 and above. It’s also compatible with the HT-E4000 Blu-ray home cinema system (or above) and the BD-E8000 Blu-ray digital TV recorder.

Phone compatibility is limited to the Samsung Galaxy S2.

Can I use my music, photos and videos with Samsung Smart TV?

AllShare is a DLNA client that lets you pick up media files from computers and handheld devices using Samsung’s own AllShare software and apps, or another DLNA server. ConnectShare lets you access media files direct from USB drives connected to your TVs.

Are there any accessories for Samsung Smart TV?

Samsung sells a USB WiFi adapter for its TVs, a wireless QWERTY keyboard, and a clip-on HD camera for Skype. 

Latest news for Samsung Smart TV

Demand 5 lands on Samsung’s TV App Store

Demand 5, Channel 5’s catch-up service, is now available to download on Samsung Smart TV sets.

This’ll give fans of Celebrity Big Brother, Neighbours and Benidorm ER the chance to catch up on missed episodes through your Smart TV.

Demand 5 lands on Samsung’s TV App Store

Demand 5 now rubs shoulders with the likes of BBC iPlayer and ITV Player, further strengthening its broadcast catch-up arsenal. As well as this, you get Netflix, Lovefilm, YouTube and on Samsung’s connected tellies for on-demand video fun.

There are also high brow apps such as BFI App and S[edition] if you’ve caught up with the latest Home and Away vignette and fancy a bit of Hitchcock and Hirst in your life too.

January 28, 2013

CES 2013 TV Evolution Kit could cost around £200

Samsung Smart TV - CES 2013 TV Evolution Kit could cost around £200Upgrading your top-end 2012 Samsung Smart TV to the 2013 Smart Hub could cost around £300.

The first Samsung Evolution Kit was unveiled at CES 2013 this week, and will boost the 2012 ES-range to the same processing power as the top-end 2013 TVs.

Reports from the show floor are suggesting a price of $200-$400, or £125-£250 in The Queen’s money, to upgrade a £2,000 TV.

The interface adds the same 1.3GHz quad-core processor from the 2013 models, plus 4GB more memory and the software for the 2013 Smart Hub. It also comes with an upgraded Magic Remote, with a touchpad but a few more buttons than the over-basic 2012 model.

Support is promised for four years (so 2016 for 2012 models), by which time high-end TV owners will probably be itching to get into 4K or even 8K Ultra High Definition - and that will mean a new TV.

You’ll also have to cope with losing an HDMI port: the Evolution Kit slot supplies power, then the kit itself plugs into a spare HDMI - your screen is just a monitor.

We’re looking forward to testing one when they hit the UK.

January 10, 2013 

CES 2013 Video hands-on Samsung's Smart TV Hub for 2013 

Jamie Carter takes a tour of Samsung's new look user interface

Last year's Smart Hub was good, but it was spoiled by some of Samsung's own apps – such as the bland Your Fitness and Family Story – which took up far too much room on the home page.

That changes here with the introduction of a new version of Smart Hub in its upcoming quad core TVs, one that streamlines and compacts apps – and thankfully relegates those two Samsung made services to the status of all the other apps.

 

 

A grid-based page of apps is far from the only innovation, with four other pages to scroll through: photos, video, social, and TV programmes, with a nice thumbnail of live TV clustered by key apps.

Enticingly the system is tied to your TV own system – be it Freeview, cable or satellite – and learns what you like to watch, and when. Consequently not only it let you know that, say, reruns of Frasier are on if you watch it a lot, but it will recognise that you watch them only at breakfast time, for example.

Probably the most interesting aspect, though, is what Samsung calls S Recommendation with Voice Interaction. As well as now being able to cope with accents and more natural ways of speaking (no more TV! TURN! OFF! as with last year's smart crop), it's possible to zip through the TV schedules and either set reminders (spoken, naturally) or recordings (Samsung's flagship LED Series, the F8000, has two Freeview HD tuners inside).

In the demo we had, a hailing of 'Find me Tom Cruise movies' (well, this is America) elicited six pieces of cover art thumbnails, including one live TV transmission of Valkerie and five others, including The Reacher, available in one of Smart Hub's on-demand movie streaming apps. First it searches live TV, then popular TV shows in your area, then the content in your on-demand apps. 

One problem that needs ironing out before the system goes live in Spring: the voice of the system is a tad robotic.

For those who bought last year's Samsung Smart Hub TV, and are now cursing their bad luck, know that a Smart Evolution Kit will be sold. Install the box, which has a quad-core processor inside, in a panel in the rear of the TV to get all of the latest features. 

January 9, 2013

CES 2013 will show first TV Evolution Kit 

Samsung is set to unveil the first of its Evolution Kits designed to make sure its smart TVs aren’t out of date a year after they’ve launched.

The smartphone-sized unit contains updated processors and memory so Samsung’s 2012 Smart TV range can keep up with the 2013 models.

CES 2013 sees first Samsung Smart TV Evolution Kit

It plugs into the upgrade slot on the back of a Samsung series 7000, 8000 and 9000 Smart TV and will instantly move them onto the 2013 Smart Hub, which features five pages showcasing live TV, video on-demand, apps, the internet and social media.

The Evolution Kit was announced at CES 2012 in response to growing unhappiness among smart TV owners that new TVs are soon out of date - sometimes in less than a year.

There are also enhancements to the TVs’ voice control and motion control features, but no word yet on how it will be priced and whether it will require an installation visit.

Samsung could sell the Evolution Kit as a one-off every year, but the smart money would be to sign up owners to a service subscription.

January 2, 2013 

January update promised to fix security hole

Samsung has reminded Smart TV owners to use encrypted wireless access points while it works to fix a security hole which could make your TV a back door to your network.

The world's biggest TV manufacturer told The Register it would include a security fix in its January 2013 software update.

The full statement from Samsung reads: "We have discovered that only in extremely unusual circumstances a connectivity issue arises between Samsung Smart TVs released in 2011 and other connected devices. We assure our customers that our Smart TV’s are safe to use.

We will release a previously scheduled software patch in January 2013 to further strengthen Smart TV security. We recommend our customers to use encrypted wireless access points, when using connected devices."

Start-up online security firm ReVuln reported the smart TV security flaw in a dramatic video, but wouldn't disclose details to anyone - including Samsung - without cash up front.

December 19, 2012

Security holes could expose your data - in video

Online security researchers claim to have found security flaws which could let hackers steal data or take control of Samsung Smart TVs.

ReVuln hasn’t told Samsung what’s wrong with its TVs - it’s holding them hostage until Samsung (or someone else) coughs up.

The Maltese start-up company has published this video, wrapped in a suitably sinister 1980s techno-thriller soundtrack, which shows how to break into Samsung’s Smart TVs.

The exploit is known as a ‘zero-day vulnerability’, meaning there’s no evidence Samsung knows it exists, so they would have no time to counter an attack.

ReVuln's Luigi Auriemma told The Register: "This specific vulnerability affects almost all the Samsung televisions of the latest generations, so multiple models.

"We plan to invest more time and effort on the home devices security in the near future testing the products of many other vendors (we chose Samsung because it's the current market leader in this sector) and moreover finding new types of attacks and ways to use such vulnerabilities. The televisions are just the beginning."

Samsung told Recombu Digital: "Samsung takes the security of our products very seriously. We are currently investigating the matter and will take appropriate actions, to the extent necessary."

The video demonstrates access to the file system of the TV, including USB storage, TV settings and channel lists, SecureStorage accounts (your user IDs and passwords), apps and their configurations.

Attackers could install malicious software to a root directory, giving them control of the TV, replacing approved remote control devices such as mobile phones with their own devices, and copying files from USB discs.

That means they could access personal files on a USB drive used to show films or photos on the TV, or add it to the millions of ‘zombie’ PCs and devices worldwide which are traded by hackers and criminals for launching attacks on government and business networks.

The video highlights the need to encrypt personal files on all your storage in case it’s connected to devices which don’t have the security of a typical PC.

December 14, 2012

S[edition] App brings Young British Artists into the living room

Samsung has gone a bit Ab Fab with its latest Smart TV app - the new s[edition] App lets you browse digital copies of famous works of art such as Damien Hirst’s LSD (aka those bloody dots) and have them on display in your living room.

S[edition] is a service that sells limited editions of digital art for as little as £5 a throw, but prices can climb up to £1,000. With each buy you get a digital certificate of ownership, and your art also appears on a personal profile - there’s a social networking element too.

You can browse other people’s collections if you wish or if you would rather your collection of digital art remain private, you can make it so it’s for your your eyes only.

The main focus of the Samsung Smart TV s[edition] App though is to show off your collection in the living room. Married with the super-thin bezels of Samsung’s latest panels, there’s an emphasis on providing ‘a truly artistic experience for the living room’ and your TV becoming the ‘perfect frame for eye catching works of art’.

The s[edition] App is available to download on Samsung 2012 Smart Interaction enabled models now.

October 25, 2012

BFI App launches today

The BFI App app we heard about a few weeks back is available to download on Samsung Smart TV sets now.

While you won’t be able to watch thousands of films through this (at least not yet) the BFI App will give you access to footage from the just-concluded BFI London Film Festival and events at BFI Southbank.

Interviews and Q&A’s with attendees including Bill Murray, Adam Buxton and Dustin Hoffman are included alongside trailers for films including Argo, Great Expectations and the forthcoming Rolling Stones documentary Crossfire Hurricane.

What’s on Samsung Smart TV? BFI App launches today

The BFI’s acting digital director, Chris Travers, said: "The BFI is delighted to take the riches of film culture and especially British film into so many homes with Samsung.

"This new app gets Samsung’s customers closer to the action with all that’s happening in the world of film. The app is a key staging post in realising the BFI’s ambitions for a wider suite of on-demand services.”

We’re chasing up for more details on the anticipated BFI Player, which would provide access to 10,000 digitised films from the BFI archives - the BFI 10K.

October 24, 2012

Spotify brings the streaming music party to Samsung

A new Samsung Smart TV app will give Spotify Premium subscribers (£10/month) access to their playlists and the 18 million-strong library of tunes.

It features a new-look UI, designed specifically for TVs, that differs from the standard desktop app. You’ll be able to play and create playlists using your remote and, as Spotify auto-syncs playlists on the go, any lists you make on the desktop or mobile apps will be available through your telly as well.

What’s on Samsung Smart TV? Spotify comes to the big screen

Owners of Samsung Smart TVs, connected Blu-ray players and home theatre systems will be able to download the free app now from Samsung Apps. Available initially on the Samsung Series 7 and 8 Smart TVs today, the app will roll out across the range by the end of October.

October 10, 2012

10,000 on-demand films from the British Film Institute

Samsung and the British Film Institute have teamed up to bring a BFI Player app to Samsung Smart TVs.

This forthcoming app will give Samsung Smart TV owners the ability to watch 10,000 films on-demand before they’re available elsewhere online. Web and mobile based versions of the BFI Player app are said to be in the pipeline as is a YouView app. But it’s those who’ve shelled out for a Samsung Smart TV who’ll be able to enjoy it first.

BFI Player brings London Film Festival to your Smart TV

BFI’s press says that the app will include “exclusive BFI content, including behind the scenes at the BFI London Film Festival,” and is part of ‘a series of initiatives towards a [fuller] BFI Player [service].’

The first 10,000 films available on the BFI Player will be chosen by the public, meaning you’ll have the chance to vote for your favourite Hitchcock or Kurosawa classic.

With Samsung Smart TVs already hosting Digital Theatre and the Curzon on Demand app, it seems like Sammy has the arthouse/film buff market cornered pretty well.

October 3, 2012

Digital Theatre brings live to the living room

Abi Morgan's Lovesong on Digital Theatre with Samsung Smart TV

Smart TV isn’t synonymous with highbrow culture, but Samsung is challenging that with the arrival of Digital Theatre on its TV app market.

The live performance library joins Curzon’s independent cinema player on Samsung’s Smart TVs, giving viewers worldwide access to a wealth of live British theatre performances.

Plays include David Tennant and Catherine Tate in Much Ado About Nothing, and All My Sons with David Suchet, with around six new productions being added per year.

It’s the first venture beyond the PC/laptop screen for Digital Theatre, which hosts more than a dozen productions from companies such as the Young Vic, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the Almeida Theatre.

Digital Theatre captures live performances using tiny HD cameras that don’t intrude on the audience, and cost from £4.99 for a 48-hour rental, £6.99 to own in standard definition and £8.99 to own in HD (plus VAT).

To watch on smart TV, you buy through a browser, then generate a 48-hour code to unlock your film on the app - it’s a system which will be extended to forthcoming iPad app.

The app uses an adaptive bitrate which matches the delivery to your broadband connection - so reliable connections at decent bandwidth (usually 3Mbps or better) will get HD, but anyone will be able to watch it. 

September 18, 2012

Does Angry Birds motion control mark the peak of smart TV tech?

Is it possible that Smart TV technology has already peaked? Samsung’s innovation for the IFA 2012 consumer tech show was to pair ultra-hit Angry Birds with motion control.

Gesture control was introduced for Samsung Smart TVs at CES 2012 in January, but use of the feature has so far been restricted to a select group of attractive young women in tight clothing, who also own Samsung’s top-of-the-range TVs.

Angry Birds on Samsung Smart TV

September 5, 2012

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