Part of the reason why the smart TV hasn’t caught on as a dominant connected device in the living room is that competing manufacturers have introduced a confusing array of technology platforms.
But on Wednesday, manufacturers LG Electronics and TP Vision (which makes Philips-branded smart TV sets in a number of territories) announced the formation of the Smart TV Alliance.
The group’s mission: to create a set of open HTML-based standards so that application developers can make apps that run across smart TV brands.
The group says other Japanese manufacturers (Sony? Sharp?) are in the process of joining its alliance. Last fall, Sharp joined LG and Philips in announcing an intention to create this alliance.
“The Smart TV Alliance creates a larger playing field which encourages developers to create more and better TV applications at the same time giving manufacturers and consumers the richest source of movies-on-demand, music services, games, social networking and more,” said said Bong-seok Kwon of LG Electronics, president of Smart TV Alliance, in a statement.
The group is making the first version of its software development kit available for free on its site.
Using the television as a primary device to connect the living room to the internet would seem like a no-brainer. But according to a study released Wednesday by the NPD Group, consumers actually seem to prefer other devices like Blu-ray players to perform that task.
According to the NPD report, 80 percent of Blu-ray users who connect their boxes to the internet actually use them to access such things as over-the-top TV programming. Only 69 percent of smart TV users who have connections do the same.