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[Article] Hands-on with LG's webOS - the first smart TV platform worthy of the name
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Old 05/12/2014, 10:31 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Stuff magazine just released an article calling the new LG webOS TV's "the first smart TV platform worthy of the name". Impressive to see non-tech mag give their impressions.

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If webOS sounds familiar, itís no surprise Ė this is the operating system that originally appeared on the ill-fated Palm Pre and Pixi smartphones and tablet.

A lot has changed since then. After six months of working with the webOS guys in Silicon Valley, LG made HP an offer it couldnít refuse and acquired the team for itself. Since then itís been frantically beavering away to turn the originally portable OS into a TV platform.

And the end result? Perhaps the simplest and smartest smart TV platform thereís ever been.
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It all adds up to webOS being a true hub for everything you might possibly want to watch. All of that fragmentation you get when trawling multiple apps and multiple sources for something of interest is gone. Content comes first, and your route to it has been shortened immeasurably.

In fact, moving from app to app is practically instantaneous, and apps continue running in the background so that if you switch from an episode of Sons Of Anarchy in order to watch the footie, once the match is over you can instantly resume the biker gang soap opera exactly where you left off.
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Rather than need a dedicated app for each source, LG's created its own called Connect SDK.

Itís completely open and completely free to develop for, and it already works with a number of platforms, including Chromecast, Roku, Amazon Fire TV and LGís smart TVs, both webOS and older.

Source-wise, the popular Plex is already up and running on it (just use the Cast button) as is a new app called Musixmatch, which lets you send your portable deviceís music straight to your TV. It even includes lyrics for a bit of at-home karaoke.

The success or failure of Connect SDK will rest on how many sources join that list, but it can only be an advantage for them to do so. Here's hoping we see Netflix, Amazon Prime Instant Video, BBC iPlayer and the rest on it soon.
And...
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LG webOS Initial Verdict

From what weíve seen so far, webOS is the best smart TV platform yet. Itís pretty and lightning fast, effortlessly simple but deep and feature-laden. Essentially, whatever type of user you are and however you like to use your TV, it makes getting to what you want quicker and more fun than ever.

Hereís hoping the TVs themselves (check out the full list of LG's webOS models on our sister site whathifi.com) are just as impressive Ė the fabulous platform deserves equally fabulous hardware.
Full Article here: LG webOS smart TV platform hands-on review | Stuff
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Old 05/13/2014, 12:48 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Reads like a good article but to be fair I have to say that stuff seems to have a close partnership with lg on this website:

LG – How to Live It
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Old 05/13/2014, 02:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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This is exactly the kind of hype i want to hear!

I cannot wish hard enough, for this webOS TV thing to be a raging success. Rereleasing webOS phones must become a necessity for LG.

Even if it doesn't lead to new webOS phones, i hope at the least someone at hp has bad heart burn when they read about people loving it.
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Old 05/13/2014, 06:48 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm still somewhat surprised.

LG could have bought this, turned it into what we see today, then called it 'LGOS' or something. A few tech journalists might remark that it was based on webOS in passing. After all, visually there are similarities, but it's not obviously what used to be on phones & TPs. Why risk association with an OS that failed in the market?

But LG have slapped the webOS name on top of everything and are using it as a selling point. At the moment, things look good for the name of webOS being 'rehabilitated'. As long as LG are putting out hardware to match the best in the market, the interface is the differentiator. Other manufacturers will be scrambling to catch up & are maybe a year behind (unless there's something under wraps).

So yes, there's no way to tell if this will result in an LG webOS phone, but things are looking good.
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Old 05/14/2014, 12:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Preemptive View Post
I'm still somewhat surprised.

LG could have bought this, turned it into what we see today, then called it 'LGOS' or something. A few tech journalists might remark that it was based on webOS in passing. After all, visually there are similarities, but it's not obviously what used to be on phones & TPs. Why risk association with an OS that failed in the market?

But LG have slapped the webOS name on top of everything and are using it as a selling point. At the moment, things look good for the name of webOS being 'rehabilitated'. As long as LG are putting out hardware to match the best in the market, the interface is the differentiator. Other manufacturers will be scrambling to catch up & are maybe a year behind (unless there's something under wraps).

So yes, there's no way to tell if this will result in an LG webOS phone, but things are looking good.
well... webOS is a great name for a web based consumer product. it's not proprietary like 'palmOS', and there's been so much time between its use that new customers may only recognize it in its LG context anyway. it would be an interesting gamble if they only licensed a catchy name...

but the devs and now the reviewers all seem to talk about the new tv OS with a passion that is somewhat similar to what has kept us loyal to the brand as well.

so something is still there in this new system, that attracts people to it. i dont know who originally engineered it, or how they were able to reapply it in their tv world, but it only takes a little exposure to realize its a winner. (if executed effectively on competent hardware of course)

the catch i'm wondering about is, if it's based in open source code, can the parts of webOS that become popular just be snatched up by the competition and mainstreamed? then webOS tvs will have been the jack rabbit starter that got caught by the competition it motivated when it jumped out of the gate. no monumental smart appliance revolution thus no accompanying phone to round out the product lineup.

i cant imagine them designing another phone this cleverly anyway. where'd palm hardware devs go? who made the river rock? where are they now?
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Old 05/14/2014, 02:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The ones who weren't burned out on the business probably scattered to all the other developers of mobile hardware, the ones that were probably off to different industries.

Much of what you see in the TVs is Open webOS, with all the TV software added on, and a new UI. Neither Enyo 1 nor the mojo-service components are there, so no services or apps that came with webOS 3.0.5 or Open webOS app are there.

IF some of that stuff were to become open source, I don't see much of any way that it would be a bad thing if other people started also selling webOS TVs. Not that I'm saying that any of that stuff would become open source. I just don't see that IF it did, that it would be a bad thing for webOS.

Nothing stopping someone from cramming their own TV support into Open webOS, either. I know in one interview Steve W said that LG spent quite a lot of time porting the software from LG's old Linux system to webOS Linux, so I don't think it's a secret that LG's smart TV system prior was also Linux based, but obviously there's a -huge- difference between the old and the new.
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Old 05/14/2014, 06:35 AM   #7 (permalink)
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been looking around my locale, seems the cheapest model in the uk is around the £560 mark for a 32" model, which is like 2-3x more than other models of the same size, going to be a hard sell i think, was gonna suggest my sister buy one as hers just died but when she saw the price difference between a webOS tv and everythign else she ended up buying a much, much, much cheaper sony bravia tv instead.
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Old 05/14/2014, 01:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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yeah we need a new TV, but that's a but too expensive. I can just buy a cheap 'dumb' TV and hook it up to my ROKU to get the same functionality, if not the same ease of use. Glad the reviews are positive so far.
i wonder if it will be like the phones, and other TV's will start copying features
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