Google TV and Android TV are two different media platforms that allow you to stream your favorite movies, TV shows, music, etc.

While Google has developed Android TV for use on televisions, media players, streaming devices and more, the platform that has appeared in many guises and iterations since its launch in 2014, Google TV is essentially a big name release, with extra features and a few design tweaks.

Android TV and Google TV offer pretty much the same things, like streaming and internet browsing apps, with a few key differences, but What are they and which one is really the best to use?

What is Google TV?

Last year, Google announced its new smart TV platform, known as Google TV. Google TV is a user interface that runs on Android devices like smartphones, TVs, and the latest Google Chromecast.

Google TV allows users to access their favorite content, including Netflix, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, Apple TV, HBO Max, and more. While this may sound quite similar to other smart platforms on the market, Google TV wants users to have easier and faster access to their most viewed and recommended content. It does this by mixing all the content from each streaming service and putting it in one interface so that you can search all streaming services with one click.

For example, instead of searching for Netflix content in the Netflix app, head to the home screen where Google TV will give you quick and easy access to what you want to watch without having to waste time accessing each app.

Chromecst with Google TV

This Chromecast model was the first streamer to bring Google TV to market (Image credit: Google)

Google TV has many features that are not available on Android TV. The great thing about Google TV is that it's much easier to use because you don't have to be in front of the screen for it to work. You can add movies or TV shows to your watch list through your phone, which is great for planning your viewing ahead of time.

Google TV also has an intelligent smart engine that will suggest content you might enjoy based on your previous viewing habits. This can be especially helpful if you're a serial gamer who's always looking for new shows to watch.

Google TV is also a great addition if you have kids, as you can create a channel just for them that will only show age-appropriate content. Parents can keep full control of this channel by using the Family Link app to block apps, control which apps are used, and set viewing limits and bed times.

If you own a Google Nest, you'll also love the new Google TV system, because you can connect your Google Nest camera and watch your camera feed through your TV.

Additional Google TV features include built-in Google Photos slideshows and the ability to control your other smart home devices, such as lighting, directly from your TV screen. There is also support for multiple user accounts, which is useful if you and your household enjoy different content.

What is Android TV?

Android TV is an Android operating system that Google designed for use on televisions., streaming devices, digital media players, and even sound bars. Android TV is built into many TVs from brands like Philips, Sony and Sharp. It offers a wide range of apps through the Google Play Store, including Netflix, Disney Channel, Spotify, YouTube, and HBO Now. There are also a number of viable live channels via Android TV, including Bloomberg TV, NFL, and ABC, as well as a host of gaming apps.

Android TV takes clutter out of the way, giving you a streamlined and simpler experience, an experience that is limited to what your TV can handle.

This means Google Play Store on Android TVs it only shows applications compatible with the TV platform, not all those available on smartphones.

TVs manufactured from 2017 with Android TV included are also integrated with the Google Assistant by default. So you can simply say "OK Google" to help control your smart home products, as well as perform life management tasks like checking your calendar or adding to your to-do list.

Xiaomi Mi TV 4S

Android TV is a fairly popular smart TV platform (Image credit: Joakim Ewenson)

Voice search, through the remote control function, can save you wasting time and typing what you are looking for; Just say the name of the actor, movie, or TV show you're looking for on the remote and Android TV will find it for you.

Android TV may have been around for a while, but it's definitely keeping up with the latest trends. If you are tired of scrolling through the latest dance moves on your phone, you will now find the TikTok app built into Android smart TVs.

Plus, another cool feature is included if you can't watch a movie or TV show without wondering where you've seen the actor before. Search the name of the actor and you will find all the titles he starred in, along with his bio, saving you a visit to IMDB.

Android TV users should have recently seen an update to its user interface, which now features three new tabs, including Home, Discover, and Apps that can help make content easier to find and emulate the new one. Chromecast with Google TV, even without a complete switch to the new platform.

Where to get Google TV

chromecast

(Image credit: Google)

The best way to watch Google TV is to buy the Chromecast with Google TV. This new Chromecast has the latest technology, including the 4K video streaming and a voice remote.

In terms of price, it costs $49.99 / €59.99 / AU$99, which is a bit cheaper than the Chromecast Ultra, but unless you want to stream games, it's the perfect choice.

When it comes to buying a TV with Google TV built in, Sony is the only option right now. Sony has chosen to use Google TV in its high-end televisions, including the 4K OLED Sony A90J and the LCD champion Sony X95J.

Where to get Android TV

Sony A8 OLED

(Image credit: Sony)

Android TV can be found on many smart TVs Philips, Sharp, Toshiba and Sony are just some of the manufacturers that include this functionality as standard. You can also find it in streaming video players, like the Nvidia Shield TV Pro.

Last year's Sony A8H OLED is still one of the best TVs and one with the Android TV platform. This TV offers amazing picture performance combined with a powerful sound system, making it the perfect choice for any home theater enthusiast. In terms of price, the 55-inch model costs $1,899 / €1,799, while the larger 65-inch size costs $2,799 / €2,799.

How do Google TV and Android TV compare, and which is better?

So, at first glance, it might seem like Google TV is just an update to Android TV that brings a new name, a new user interface, and new features. functions, more of a rebrand than a revolution, and you wouldn't be wrong. But Just because Google TV is now on the scene doesn't mean Android TV is gone.

The main difference between the two is that Google TV focuses on user interaction and fine-tuning content curation, so finding what you want to watch is simple and elegant.. Google TV also offers a watchlist that allows you to easily tag content from different apps to watch later. You can do this from any device that allows you to sign in to your Google account, so you can sign in, whether it's on your phone or on your laptop.

However, as of 2021, mMany TV manufacturers running Android TV will switch to Google TV as their main interface. Additionally, you can also access Google TV via streaming media devices like Google Chromecast, which is why we cast on the Google TV side as the primary option.

Unless you're planning on upgrading your TV, you probably don't have to worry too much about making the switch. Unless of course your Android TV is acting a bit slow, in which case it might be cheaper to buy a new Chromecast with Google TV instead of a new TV screen.

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