Last updated on June 4th, 2021
You’ve done it! You’ve purchased a Smart TV, and Buck Rogers has well and truly entered the 21st century. You have said goodbye to traditional broadcasting and entered the world of streaming, and are faced with the dreaded what-now moment and a remote that looks like it could launch a space station.
Or perhaps you are debating whether or not to purchase a Smart TV and want to know more about its capabilities. Whatever your reason, you have come to the right place! Today we are looking at all your Smart TV-related questions so you can buy with ease and unlock your TV’s full potential!
What can I do with a Smart TV?
With your Smart TV, you can watch live TV, listen to the radio, and have access to online streaming services on a large, high-definition screen! There are hundreds of apps that you can choose from, such as Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, Amazon Prime, and YouTube, all packed with exclusive content that means movie night options are endless!
These services do come with a subscription fee that should be considered before making your purchase. A Smart TV will sometimes have an internet browser, too, allowing you to search the web and a range of ports available. You will be able to add HDMI cables and other media devices such as Amazon’s Fire Stick for more content and games, giving you endless possibilities!
Can I install Zoom on a Smart TV?
At present, Zoom does not have a Smart TV app that you can download and use on your TV. But that does not mean you can’t use Zoom on your TV; in fact, there are a few ways that you can run Zoom on your TV!
If you have an Apple TV box, you can mirror your other Apple devices using Airplay. You will be able to see the Zoom call that is running on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac on your TV in a few easy steps! There are plenty of tutorials online to walk you through this, although screen mirroring is quite self-explanatory, especially after a few uses.
For Android devices, Chromo casting will allow you to view Zoom on your Smart TV. You will need Google’s Chromecast to do this. It can be connected to your TV through the HDMI port and allows you to mirror the screen on your PC, phone, or tablet in a few easy steps.
Again there are plenty of tutorials online walking you through this, but it is easy to do once you have installed your Chromecast successfully. For those wanting to use their PC, you can run an HDMI lead straight from the PC to your TV and avoid the added cost of extra devices!
Can I use my Smart TV without the internet?
You can use your Smart TV without the internet, but you will find yourself limited with what you can do. As most of your Smart TVs apps will require an internet connection, you won’t be able to stream content from Netflix, Youtube, or other apps without being connected to the internet.
The internet connection is usually a wireless one, and to watch TV in HD or 4K quality, you usually need a fast and high-quality internet connection. It’s worth checking your area’s internet speeds and capabilities before deciding if a Smart TV is the right choice for you.
Without an internet connection, you can still watch regular or live TV on your Smart TV, though, so there’s no need to panic if the internet breaks one day! You will need a top box, a cable connection, or a satellite/aerial to access these regular live TV channels. Again, the channels available to you will depend on your area, so be sure to check these beforehand.
Like many things, Smart TVs are heavily reliant on an internet connection, so we recommend ensuring you have a fast and reliable connection before purchasing and installing a Smart TV.
Can we download apps on Smart TV?
Yes, you can download apps on your Smart TV! These apps will provide you with access to streaming services such as Netflix, Prime Video, and YouTube, and all require internet access and, often, a paid subscription fee.
Installing apps is easy to do, but the method will depend on the brand of your Smart TV. Generally speaking, you will need to launch your TV’s home screen and navigate the app store or app section. This is usually clearly labeled, so you should find it problem-free! If you are struggling, you can search online for your TV and app store brand and find a wealth of tutorials walking you through the process.
Once launched, there will be featured apps or promoted apps that you can choose from. Alternatively, you can use the search icon to search for the apps that you want. You will be able to use your remote to type in the app’s name, and then it should, along with other suggested apps, appear.
You will only be able to download and use apps on your TV in the app store. For apps that you cannot find, or if your Smart TV does not have an app store (this is unlikely these days), you can purchase a digital media player such as the Amazon Fire Stick or Apple TV box. These devices will connect to your TV and provide access to apps with ease.
Can you watch regular TV on a Smart TV?
Yes, you can watch regular TV on your Smart TV! You can use apps to stream live TV such as Hulu+, AT&T TV, Sling TV, YouTube TV, and others, but there is a monthly subscription cost to each of these services.
But don’t worry about the added cost just yet; you can still access the free networks in your area! Your Smart TV will need to be connected to a satellite, aerial, or cable to access these, just as a regular TV does. It’s worth checking the inputs and outputs on the back of your Smart TV to ensure there is space for a wire or cable to be inserted before purchasing so that your TV provides you with the channels you want.
The same applies if you already pay for cable TV or a satellite subscription. You can plug your cable or box in as usual and access the regular channels or features you had with your regular TV. Most satellites or cables can be affordable to purchase, but it’s always worth keeping the wire your previous TV used to save some dollars and make the installation of your new Smart TV even easier!
For those that currently do not have a satellite or aerial to receive regular TV, you can purchase these either online or in stores with ease. Suppose you are installing the aerial or satellite dish outside on your roof. In that case, it might be worth having a professional engineer come and install it to save you any injuries or an afternoon wondering what cable goes where!
Is Netflix free on a Smart TV?
While the Netflix app is free for you to download on your Smart TV, you will need to pay a subscription fee to watch and use Netflix. Netflix used to offer free trials for first-time users but has since stopped these trial periods in the US.
You can choose three plans from basic, standard, and premium ranging from $8.99 a month to $17.99 a month. The plans range in video quality and resolution, with the premium package offering 4K streaming quality. When selecting your package, we recommend checking what the resolution of your Smart TV is; after all, why pay for poor quality if your TV is capable of so much more?
It’s also worth checking your internet connection and its streaming capabilities, as this will determine the quality of the image on your TV. The last thing you want is a pixel-y image that buffers every few seconds!
The subscription you choose will determine how many screens can stream from Netflix at the same time, an important feature for those looking to share the account with family members. You can cancel or change your package at any time, and there is no cap on the amount of content you can watch so that you can stream away with ease!
Some users share their accounts with friends, too, keeping the cost of the subscription down, although Netflix’s website does state that you should only share your account with people that you live with. It’s worth weighing up the cost of Netflix with the shows or movies on there that you want to watch before deciding on your package.