What Is A Smart TV? (And Which One Should I Get)

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Have you ever asked yourself “what is a Smart TV?” If you are in search of your next TV purchase, you’ve likely seen that phrase pop up over and over again and wondered what exactly it means. Let us help answer some questions you may have regarding this new TV norm, the Smart TV.

What is a Smart TV? | All You Need To Know Before Buying

What Is a Smart TV?

A Smart TV can be simply described as any TV that can connect to the Internet and have access to a number of streaming services or applications. Smart TVs usually allow you to do a variety of things. Here is a quick list of what you can do on a Smart TV:

  • Watch from streaming services like Netflix
  • Browse YouTube
  • Access on-demand movie services like HBO Go
  • Use sports apps like NBA League Pass
  • Rent movies
  • Browse the web
  • Video call on Skype

Why Should I get a Smart TV?

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For most of us, watching Netflix on our laptop will be more than fine when watching alone. But, once you have friends over, most of us have to plug our laptops into a larger TV screen. Getting your own Smart TV can remove that hassle by having the streaming services you need just a TV remote button press away. Or, if you’re simply tired of watching your shows on the small screen of your laptop, tablet, or phone, it might be time to invest in a new Smart TV.

When Was the Smart TV invented?

The Smart TV as we know it today was brought into the mainstream by Samsung in 2008. But surprisingly, the concept of a TV connected to the Internet is something that has been around since 1995. It was called “WebTV” and was originally a set-top box that converted any TV it was connected to into a Smart TV.

How Can I Make my TV “Smart”?

You can actually still turn your existing TV into a Smart TV! There are many dongles, adapters, or even boxes that can connect to your TV using an HDMI cable that practically turns it into a Smart TV. A great example of this would be the Roku Streaming Stick.

Where Can I get a Smart TV?

There are many places where you can buy Smart TVs online like Amazon.com with some manufacturers even allowing you to buy directly from them online. But we suggest that you go to your local electronics store to check out the TVs themselves. Not only can you see the image quality of the TV in the store, but you will probably get to try out all the features it has as well.

Which Smart TV Should I Get?

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This isn’t as straightforward as you might think as each person’s needs are different. Here is a quick list of the things you should keep note of:

  • Resolution – Always go for something that has 4K. It’s time to leave 1080p behind and future-proof your Smart TV
  • HDR – Companies and store displays will bombard you with numbers and contrast ratios and so much tech jargon to impress you. The major thing that matters with image quality is the support for HDR or High Dynamic Range
  • LCD or OLED – OLED generally has the better image quality over LCD screens but does come at a higher cost. If budget is not an issue, always go for OLED screens
  • Display ports – Always keep note of how many HDMI ports and/or Display ports there are on your Smart TV. Make sure there are enough for all of your devices to plug in
  • Connectivity – Wi-Fi is a given but also check if it comes with an ethernet port. If the TV is situated near your router, it would be best to go for the wired connection. Not only will this increase the stability of your connection but will also allow your Smart TV to stream in 4K, whenever applicable

There are a lot of Smart TVs you can choose from Amazon.com.

What Size of Smart TV is Ideal?

Size isn’t everything in this case. Depending on how far your couch is from your Smart TV, this sort of determines what the ideal size of your TV should be. Starting at 5 feet from the TV, you should get something around 32-inches.

As a general rule, for every foot further away from the TV, you should add about 5-8 inches in screen size. For example, having your Smart TV 6 feet away would mean you should probably target something in the 37 to 40-inch range.


Speaking of Contrast Ratio, here is an informative video about it from Techquickie.

Now that you know the answer to “what is a Smart TV,” are you considering getting one? Smart TVs are definitely the new normal when it comes to TVs. With everything being connected to the Internet these days, having your TV connected to it too shouldn’t be a surprise. It’s definitely a great investment, especially if you love video streaming and subscription sites. At least when you do get a Smart TV, you’ll have more screen size for binge-watching sessions on Netflix.

Do you have any other questions about Smart TVs? Discuss them in the comments below

Up next: When smart TV apps stop working

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