JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Smart TVs: LG running webOS v Hisense running Android

Date

Adam Turner

Zoom in on this story. Explore all there is to know.

Hisense's Android-powered Vision TV.

Hisense's Android-powered Vision TV.

LG running webOS
from $899
lg.com/au

Hisense "Vision TV" running Android
from $799
hisense.com.au

Televisions are turning into overgrown tablets as the home entertainment giants look for new ways to make our smart TVs smarter.

This year's new televisions from LG run the webOS operating system, previously found on Palm smartphones and HP tablets. Meanwhile Hisense has turned to Google's Android, offering some of the world's first smart TVs certified by Google.

If you're already a keen Android user then you'll immediately feel at home with Hisense's Android televisions, which use the same menus as Android smartphones.

A few streaming video apps are pre-installed and the televisions offer easy access to the Google Play store for music, movies and TV shows. You can also install apps from Google Play, although you're restricted to the Google TV-friendly section of the app store.

If you're not already wedded to Android then you might find it easier to navigate your way around webOS on an LG television. Rather than rely on several layers of menus, webOS puts commonly used features within easy reach. There's less of a learning curve than Android, although unfortunately some of the webOS icons are a bit hard to read from the couch.

Both televisions let you wave the remote to move a pointer around the screen, which often makes life easier. Both also support voice commands, which rarely make life easier.

While the LG is easier for less-tech-savvy people to operate, it's more likely to frustrate power users because of the lack of a built-in movie store and the dearth of third-party apps. The DLNA media player built into webOS is terrible but Australians can't download alternatives such as Plex for streaming video around their home. In these circumstances you're much better off with Android.

VERDICT:

If you live an Android-centric lifestyle then the Hisense televisions should make a good fit for your lounge room. But if you're yet to embrace the world of smartphones and tablets then LG's webOS televisions might make a better starting point.