A smart TV is a television which can function as a computer in addition to performing its primary task of producing television images. It has become the newest trend in the television market and many leading television manufacturers have already released their versions of this newest trend. However, as with most novel technologies, there are two sides to every story and this article will look into the pros and cons of Smart TVs in its present state.
Capabilities of Smart TVs
The Smart TVs presently in the market are capable of allowing the users to browse the Internet and perform many other functions that were only possible through a computer or through a modern day smartphone. The consumers are now able to watch streaming videos, chat through Skype, send and receive emails, do shopping in eBay or even access social networks such as Facebook and Twitter using their Smart TV. In addition, the Smart TV can also be used as a gaming device and will allow the consumer to play web-based games with many other participants from around the world. In addition, Smart TVs also allow its consumers to store large number of movies and data in the television itself while some Smart TVs allow its consumers to make use of a cloud server for further storage. In order to perform many of its tasks, it is necessary for the Smart TV to have sound sensing devices such as microphones and motion sensing devices such as video cameras in its possession in addition to being linked with the Internet via communication devices. Although such tools make the Smart TV what it is, the same tools has the potential to pose a threat to its users privacy at various instances.
Benefits of using a Smart TV
When looking at the capabilities of a Smart TV described above, it is clear that the consumers have been provided with a device, which can make life so easy in the future. With a Smart TV, it is possible for a person to perform these tasks without having to leave the television in the living room and therefore keep an eye on important television programs or on breaking news on TV at the same time. In addition, one could assume that being able to perform these tasks in the comfort of the living room will allow families to be at each other’s company more often than enjoying such entertainment in isolation.
Drawbacks of present day Smart TVs
The technology incorporated into the Smart TV brings to the household its vulnerabilities as well. It was reported recently that hackers were able to obtain live feeds from web cameras world-over and invade the privacy of many unsuspecting users of such services. If this was the case, the same vulnerability will invade the privacy of the living room as well. In addition, the use of cloud servers can also provide avenues for invading household privacy to a certain extent. Another downside of having all in one Smart TVs in the living room is that it may prevent people from breaking off from watching TV, which could promote inactivity as well as addictiveness to television among vulnerable populations. The next generation of young people may suffer the consequences if Smart TVs are allowed to dictate terms in the household.
When looking at the overall concept of Smart TVs, it seems like that it would become a general lifestyle change within the next couple of years. However, given the rate at which most of these technologies evolve, even Smart TVs might not last in its present form for much longer and therefore the future Smart TVs or its successors may correct some of these drawbacks to a certain extent. If such technologies are forced into the society without considering its vulnerabilities, giving into such technologies might not be a ‘smart move’ for most individuals.