The new Google TV-like user interface is rolling out to Philips, Sony and TCL Android TVs as well as Nvidia Shield and other boxes in many European countries, India, and other places. Users complain about autoplaying ads.
Google TV-like user interfaceAfter the initial launch in February in North America and a few of the largest European countries, there are now reports about it rolling out in other regions. FlatpanelsHD has been contacted by over 20 users in Europe where it started to appear last week. There are also fresh reports from India, Brazil and other countries. It is apparently rolling out to 2017-2021 Android TVs from OnePlus, Philips, Sony, Sharp, Realme, TCL and other brands. It has started to appear on Nexus Player, Nokia, Nvidia Shield, Motorola, Strong, and Xiaomi boxes. It is not clear exactly which devices will get it but it would appear that Google is planning to bring it to almost every device. If you are not seeing it yet, it is probably just a matter of time. It does not require a system update as Google is pushing it out directly as an update to the launcher app (seemingly version 3.0). The new Android TV user interface mimics Google TV but it does not offer the full functionality and has fewer tabs compared to the new Chromecast and 2021 TVs from Sony or TCL.
Old Android TV (left) and new Android TV (right)
Complaints about adsThe new user interface has been out for a while in the US, Australia, Canada, Germany and France. Users of especially Nvidia Shield have voiced their concerns on reddit about an increasing number of ads, autoplay and recommendations. FlatpanelsHD wrote about it in July. Autoplaying ads can be disabled from Preferences -> Home Screen -> Disable video/audio previews In 2019, Google told partners that it would expand its ads offerings on Android TV in 2020 and beyond. The revamped user interface is part of Google's plan to put content front and center to reduce the time spent inside apps trying to find new content. Existing Android TV devices will be updated whereas most new TVs and media players are expected to come preloaded with Google TV.