Several days ago, Samsung announced that it will be unveiling new personalized smart TV services at the upcoming CES 2017.
One of these services is called TV Plus and based on a recent leak, it is going to be a part of a Samsung media platform embedded in its next-generation televisions. The feature is similar to the service provided by Google Chromecast.
The leak came straight from Samsung's Smart View app, which has long allowed its users to sync media files from a Samsung smartphone to a Samsung smart television. Smart View's latest version at the App Store includes information that reveals Samsung's streaming ambition.
Aggregating Media Content
One of the images posted in the app's description shows a Live TV tab under the Living Room TV section. Like in Chromecast, the Smart TV could also stream media content providers such as YouTube, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. Essentially, the concept is not unlike smartphone casting wherein media content from the device is beamed to the Samsung smart TV.
Some tech observers note that Netflix is noticeably absent from the posted media providers that will eventually be supported. This probably means Samsung has also failed to secure rights to stream Netflix content, a problem that Apple has also encountered for its own media platform.
It is also worth noting that Samsung has already inked a deal with Fandango, which will start providing content for its streaming channels.
What is particularly interesting is that all content accessible from Samsung's Smart TV will no longer require a separate device or media dongle like the Chromecast or Roku, as content can be directly controlled from a user's smartphone.
This is not an entirely new phenomenon, of course. Vizio, a rival TV manufacturer, has already integrated Chromecast into its TV sets. Rather than a smartphone or a remote, the company has been shipping its higher-end models with a tablet-like contraption used to navigate the interface.
Samsung has not released any statement about the leak. However, one can turn to its previous pronouncement for more insight.
"At Samsung, one of our top priorities is ensuring that we are closely in tune with what consumers want and need from their smart devices and electronics," Won Jin Lee, executive vice president at Samsung Electronics, said when TV Plus was announced. "We continue to innovate our Smart TV offering in order to provide the content experiences that our customers have come to know and expect from Samsung."