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CES 2014: TP Vision brings Android to Philips TVs

Tom Morgan
6 Jan 2014
TP Vision Android
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TP Vision has announced plans to add Google's Android operating system to its upcoming Philips TVs

Philips TVs could soon be powered by Google's Android operating system, following parent company TP Vision's announcement that it plans to launch its first Android-powered sets in 2014.

Rather than ditch the existing Smart TV system, it seems TPV intends Android will co-exist with its own interface. Considering TPV was one of the founding members of the Smart TV alliance, a group that wanted to standardise Smart TV platforms across manufacturers to make it easier for developers and provide more choice for consumers, it's good to know it won't be getting rid of Smart TV completely, although with full access to the Google Play store it may quickly get left behind once Philips TVs can download apps like Netflix, BBC iPlayer and LoveFilm.

TPV has pledged to pair the new software with a quad-core processor, which should provide ample performance to run Android's many apps and games smoothly. This is more than welcome, as a sluggish UI was one of the criticisms we had with the 4K 65PFL9708 earlier this year, although it's currently unclear if this chip will be the Qualcomm Snapdragon 802 announced earlier today.

TP Vision CEO Maarten de Vries said "we will start the roll-out of Philips TVs featuring Android in the higher end of our product portfolio. We expect that consumer appreciation and take-up will rapidly grow. By 2015 already the majority of our Smart TVs will be Android powered.

"We believe that Android is a true promise for the TV market as it will seriously boost the Smart TV experience, bringing the speed and user friendliness on par with the experiences users get from their mobile smart devices of today." Scott Housley, Global Head of Product and Strategy at TP Vision, added.

So far Europe and Russia have been confirmed as target markets for the new Android-powered sets. The first models should go on sale from the Summer onwards.

What we don't know yet is what shape Android will come in - TPV has yet to confirm whether it will use Google TV, a custom interface or the stock version of Android. Hopefully we'll learn more as CES continues.

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