LG Smart+ TV (webOS): Set Up
Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to the Bean Bird. This animated bird character – shaped like a kidney bean, hence the name – guides you through what’s easily the most friendly and fun out-of-the-box set up process we’ve seen on a Smart+ TV.
Cute and funny graphical Bean Bird interludes congratulate you on every step of your install, or issue a friendly warning that you could be missing out if you try to skip a stage. The set up process is logically organized and brilliantly straightforwardly explained, even making it simplicity itself to integrate control, via LG’s Magic Remote, of external set-top boxes like Sky or Freesat receivers.
Making set up so rewarding and simple means more people are likely to follow the whole process through and thus get more from their TV than would normally be the case.
LG Smart+ TV (webOS): Performance
On the high-spec 55UB950V TV we’ve tried LG Smart+ TV on, it performs just dreamily. Menus load quickly despite their rich levels of graphical content, and zipping between all the many tiles of the TV’s menus is so fast and deliciously fluid – despite the subtle animations going on – that you feel like you’re using a high-spec Mac or PC rather than a TV.
We were impressed by the system’s stability too considering its newness and level of sophistication. We suffered not one single crash in more than a week of use, and while not every app is currently working to full spec there’s always an error message to let you know this rather than the system just leaving you hanging or in the dark as to what’s going on.
There are a couple of places where the menus don’t lead quite where you might expect them to, but such is the sophistication of the Smart+ TV system elsewhere that again this feels like a temporary situation likely to be readily resolved by firmware updates in the not too distant future.
We do wonder if the Smart+ TV system might slow down a bit with TV models lower down LG’s range, which have less powerful processing systems at their disposal. But LG doesn’t believe this will be a significant problem, and the way the platform has been developed – and to some extent the computer-based background of the people who’ve developed it – means we feel inclined to take LG at its word on this.