Google launches a new update for Android TV that gives its smart TV OS a whole new look – one that is almost identical to the user interface of the company’s Google TV software on its latest Chromecast.
The new interface updates the look of Android TV to bring it more in line with Google TV, adding scrolling carousels with selected content to the top of the menus and releasing the large icons for more minimalist tabs.
That said, there are some differences between the user interface on Chromecast’s Google TV and the updated Android TV. The new Android TV menu has three main tabs: home, for quick access to apps and channels; apps, as a dedicated place to find your applications; and a brand new Discover tab, which will offer personalized recommendations for TV shows and movies, along with popular content from Google – similar to the “For You” tab on Google TV.
Conversely, the Google TV UI uses the aforementioned “For You” tab as its home screen and then breaks out certain pieces of content into dedicated shows, movies and live tabs, instead of gathering them all in one place. It also makes it easier to access your purchasing content through a library tab that Android TV lacks.
It’s still a nice update, which helps bring Google’s various smart TV platforms a little more in line – although it’s still a bit confusing that Google TV and Android TV still exist as separate products with different interfaces at this time. (Google still plans to offer Google TV on newer smart TVs in the future.)
The updated Android TV user interface is starting to launch today on Android TV OS devices in the US, Australia, Canada, Germany and France, with several countries promised to follow in the coming weeks.