I promised a follow up to my Android TV explanation to discuss UX/UI implications, and here it is.
About 10 years ago, I had a friend who wanted to integrate his laptops, keyboards, and TV. Using 3 laptops, 2 keyboards, a mouse, 3 remote controls, a rather large and bulky TV, 3 coffee tables and I don’t even know how many cables, he managed to set everything up. Did it work? It sure did. Too bad the picture from the laptops stayed about the same size, the streaming paused at regular intervals, both keyboards, the mouse, and the three remotes were all required to make anything happen, and because the movies were all pirated, someone’s hand or head was partly in the picture the entire time. Now Iook at Android TV. We have come a long way.
Android TV is going to be easily accessible and readily available starting next year. Android TV will be built into all Sony HD TVs and 4KTVs, as well as new TVs from Sharp and TPVision. Don’t feel like buying a new TV? Razor and Asus will be making set-top boxes for existing TVs called “micro-consoles”. Also on the hardware side, you will be able to use smartwatches running , and your Android phone as remote controls. So the hardware is user friendly and easily accessible, what about the software?
From what I have read, Android TV is going to be very user friendly. In fact, after learning more about Android TV, I emailed my dad to let him know this is something he and my mom may be interested in. If I am telling my parents about it, it means that it will probably be easy to learn and use. Android TV utilizes voice search, which is huge for me. You can search specific TV shows and movies, or do generic searches such as “Oscar nominated movies from 1989”. You can also choose to watch the show or movie you find on a streaming service, look at YouTube clips related to the show or movie, or select actors and actresses from the show or movie for another search. Android TV will even make recommendations for you based on viewing habits
Another check in the user friendly box, Android TV will double as a streamer for its Cast feature, allowing users to search for shows or movies on their mobile devices, then run them on their TV.
In my earlier blog, I talked about the Instead of having to launch an app before being able to view a movie or TV show, I go straight to the movie or TV show “card” and start play back immediately. I think this is fantastic. I am not the most patient person in the world, and sometimes it drives me crazy waiting for Netflix to launch before I can even start my movie. Now, I don’t have to deal with that anymore.
Admittedly, a lot of what I just discussed sounds like it is comparable to some of the other systems out there, but I think Android TV will be different. Because of its ease of use across all devices, and the user friendly aspect for people who don’t want a bunch of different plug-ins for their TV, this is a great option.
As with its Android L, Google has focused on creating something that makes the user experience better, easier and predictable. If you know how to use Android TV, you can easily use it on any TV. Graphics, movement, and interface al stay the same.
I foresee 2015 as a fun, exciting year in the personal entertainment industry.