Tag Archives: Samsung

Samsung Smart TVs: Just about the worst problem imaginable could be coming for Samsung

There is an ongoing global semiconductor shortage at the moment. The lack of these crucial chips, which are found in a dizzying number of products, is causing havoc to new and existing products. Have you struggled to bag a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X at checkout because of the low stock levels? The chip shortage is to blame. Disappointed that Samsung has delayed a new Galaxy Note phone until 2022 at the earliest? The chip shortage is to blame. Tried to buy a new graphics card for your PC and found that prices are three – or four – times higher than last year? Yup, you’ve guessed – the chip shortage is to blame.

The shortage has been exacerbated in recent months by factory fires at production plans, earthquakes, and the blockage in the Suez Canal in Egypt at the end of last month.

And now a Samsung executive has expressed concerns publicly that – with no sign of the shortage letting up anytime soon – the short supplies could soon have a dismal impact on Samsung’s television production. Head of Samsung Electronics’ Visual Display business Han Jong-hee this week informed reporters in South Korea that if the severe chip shortage doesn’t improve soon, it “may not be possible to produce TVs.”

Given that Samsung is comfortably the biggest producer of Smart TVs on the planet, that’s really not ideal.

If you’ve been thinking about upgrading your ageing telly to a shiny new model in the coming months, you could soon find yourself faced with endless ‘Sold Out’ and ‘More Stock Expected Soon’ warnings. With the Olympics and the Euros on the horizon – both big incentives for people to treat themselves to a new TV, the supply problems could hit sooner than Samsung expects.

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As you’d expect, Samsung is doing everything it can to mitigate against the issue. According to reports, Samsung Electronics’ Han Jong-hee has been meeting with Taiwanese chipmakers, like MediaTek and NovaTek, to try to secure extra supply to keep TVs coming off the production line. Based on previous sales figures, Samsung sells around 430,000 Smart TVs worldwide each day. That’s a lot of chips.

“We are doing all we can to prevent problems,” Han Jong-hee told reporters in South Korea. He is confident that supply for this year should be unaffected, with any issues from the global shortage likely to hit next year.

Despite the concerns around semiconductor shortfall, Han Jong-hee confirmed that Samsung’s mass production line for its 146-inch Micro LED is now fully operational. This wall-sized TV will be joined by 110-, 70-, and 80-inch models later this year, Samsung has confirmed.

Thankfully, if you already have a Samsung Smart TV in your home, there is some good news. The company has recently secured 166 new channels to watch for free.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Samsung Smart TV owners are getting 166 new channels for free

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Samsung is dramatically expanding its free telly offering for Smart TV owners with a set from 2016 onwards. The South Korean company has partnered with Rakuten TV to bring 166 new channels to its Samsung TV Plus.

For those who don’t know, Samsung TV Plus is a free advert-supported video streaming service baked into Samsung Smart TVs. While Samsung has a pretty solid selection of streaming apps, including Apple TV, Disney+, Netflix, and more, supported on their televisions, most of these require a paid subscription each month. If you’ve just emptied your wallet on a shiny new 4K TV or QLED set, that might not be particularly enticing.

The ability to watch films and boxsets for free is a great asset for Samsung TVs. With the latest deal with Rakuten TV sealed, television owners are about to unlock dozens more channels. The 166 new channels will be rolling out to April and May in 16 markets across Europe, including the UK, through Samsung’s TV Plus service.

There are already a number of channels from Rakuten TV available in the UK, Spain, Germany, France, Italy, Austria and Switzerland. So, while viewers in UK won’t see as many new arrivals as those in Sweden and the Netherlands, who have never enjoyed any of these channels before and get the full 166.

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As part of the new barrage of channels, Rakuten is launching its own themed genres channels, from Rakuten Action, Rakuten Comedy, Drama, Spotlight, Rakuten Documentaries, and Family. There’s also Rakuten Movies and Rakuten Stories – a channel designed to bring Rakuten TV’s original and exclusive content.

Other global channels, such as Africanews, Bloomberg TV, Bloomberg Quicktake, and Euronews, are also included in Samsung TV Plus service too.

Of course, if you do want to splash some extra cash, Rakuten TV is only happy to oblige. The company, headquartered in Japan, allows Samsung Smart TV owners to rent some of the latest Hollywood blockbusters, indie films, and more. Rakuten also offers access to Starzplay too, which doesn’t have its own streaming app, but is available via Rakuten, Apple TV and Prime Video.

According to the official announcement, you’ll need a Samsung Smart TV from 2016 onwards to get access to Samsung TV Plus and the new advert-supported channels. You’ll also need to be living in the UK, Spain, Germany, France, Italy, Austria, or Switzerland.

The new content drop for Samsung TV Plus is part of a wider push towards free to watch ad-supported channels in response to £10 a month streaming options like Netflix and Disney+. Roku, famed for its easy-to-use set-top boxes, has secured the rights to a number of exclusive shows for its ad-supported Roku Channel, which is available on its own devices (obviously) as well as NOW and Sky Q boxes.

Meanwhile, Plex – originally designed for viewers to bring their own home media to the big screen – , with movies from big Hollywood studios on the way thanks to a recent deal. Samsung is the most popular telly manufacturer on the planet, so it’s in a pretty good position to compete with these rivals. 

You don't need a Samsung TV anymore to get one of its greatest features

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Samsung’s brilliant TV Plus service has been serving up free content to television owners for over five years. The popular app now comes pre-installed on all new tellies from the firm and can also be downloaded onto most modern smart TVs that were made after 2016. Once launched, you’ll find a swathe of shows from platforms such as Vevo Pop, CNN, SuperToons TV and the Comedy Channel without paying a penny to view.
In fact, there’s a total of 94 free channels with no sign-ups asking for your email address or annoying subscriptions raiding your bank account each month.

Now, in a major change, Samsung is bringing this service to more of its fans and they won’t need a TV to tune in.

From today it will be available in the Galaxy Store and Google Play Store for select Galaxy smartphones and tablets.

That means those with one of the latest devices from Samsung will be able to watch shows like Hot in Cleveland, Russell Howard’s Good News and Taskmaster Best Bits straight on their portable devices.

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TV Plus on first launched on smartphones in the US last year and, due to its success, UK and Europe is now being treated to the update as well.

To download the Samsung TV Plus app, users can simply search and download the app from Galaxy Store or Google Play Store to tap into hours of free content.

Samsung TV Plus has become one of the fastest-growing streaming services in the world following its debut in 2015 and that’s probably not hard to dispute considering the amount of content that’s available without reaching for your wallet.

“The growth of Samsung TV Plus has everything to do with the quality of the content, the ease of access and the multi-screen experiences offered,” said Sang Kim, SVP of Product & Marketing for Samsung Electronics. “We are working hard to deliver more to our customers wherever they are – including our mobile offering.”

Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 won’t fix a complaint with the Galaxy S21 Ultra

Sadly though, according to GSMArena, it looks like the next entry in the Z Fold line-up won’t address one big S Pen issue with the Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G.

While it’s great that S Pen support has come to the Galaxy S range, there is one slightly frustrating thing – and that’s the S21 Ultra 5G doesn’t have a built-in holder for the stylus.

Unlike the Note range, you simply can’t pull out and remove the S Pen from the bottom of the S21 Ultra 5G handset.

Instead, a separate case has to be purchased which features a holder for the S Pen.

And it looks like the Galaxy Z Fold 3 will require a similar workaround, according to South Korea’s NaverNews.

The outlet said that the initial plan for the Galaxy Z Fold 3 was to have an S Pen holder built into the device, with patents previously showing this.

This article originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

Google Pixel smartwatch design leaks …and looks set to borrow from both Samsung and Apple

Rumours of a Google-designed smartwatch are nothing new. Ever since Samsung and Apple launched smartwatches to accompany their best-selling smartphone ranges, people have wondered whether Google will follow the same playbook. And thanks to Jon Prosser, who created the popular YouTube show FrontPageTech and has been a reliable source of leaks about Google’s forthcoming products, we have now had a good look at the long-rumoured Pixel Watch.
Sources within Google have revealed some new details about the so-called Pixel Watch to Prosser, who has commissioned some high-resolution renders based on the information. These new images depict a smartwatch with a circular display, a flexible rubber strap, and a physical crown to interact with elements on-screen.

Google is tipped to have created an almost bezel-less display – to minimise the total size of the device on your wrist. Google already has a fitness-tracking app, Google Fit, so we can be pretty confident that Pixel Watch will include some level of step, calorie, or heart-rate tracking.

Interestingly, the Pixel Watch seems to borrow from both market-leading smartwatches – the Samsung Galaxy Watch series and Apple Watch. While it was Apple that pioneered the crown – a staple of analogue watches – as a way to interact with a smartwatch. This solves the issue of smearing the touchscreen with fingerprints (making it difficult to see the time) and endless swipes on the small display. However, it is Samsung that has rigidly stuck with a round design – like a traditional timepiece.

While a number of rivals have flocked to copy the rounded square shape of the best-selling Apple Watch (Fitbit, for example), Samsung has stuck firm with its circular design. And now, Google looks set to join its ranks too. According to Prosser, Google is eyeing up an October release date for its Pixel Watch. That would make sense. After all, Google regularly unveils the latest entry in its flagship Pixel smartphone series in October, alongside Chromebook and new Google Nest gadgets.

You can watch the whole report, complete with exclusive renders, in the latest edition of FrontPageTech below.

This article originally appeared on Daily Express :: Tech Feed

More Samsung TV owners offered a swathe of free content and that's not all

Samsung is offering even more of its TV customers the chance to tune into content without having to pay any expensive subscription fees. The firm’s popular TV Plus service – which brings access to channels such as CNN, SuperToons TV, Action Movies, Rakuten TV and the Comedy Channel – is now launching in a number of new regions across the world including India, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Luxembourg, Ireland and Portugal.
These areas now join the UK, US, Australia, Brazil and Mexico who have already been given access to the streaming app which can be found on almost all new Samsung TVs.

If you weren’t already aware, Samsung’s TV Plus gives you instant access to top news, sports, entertainment, and more. In fact, there are over 80 channels available and the best part is that it’s totally free and doesn’t require any downloads, sign-up, credit cards, subscriptions or additional devices.

Samsung TV Plus has become one of the fastest-growing streaming services in the world following its debut in 2015 and that’s probably not hard to dispute considering the amount of content that’s available without reaching for your wallet.

It’s also getting regular updates aimed at improving the experience with the most recent change including a simplified player bar for more intuitive controls.

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Some more big news about Samsung TV Plus is that the new phone app is now coming to more places including the U.K., Canada, Germany and India. The Samsung TV Plus mobile app first launched in the US late last year and offers select Galaxy users access to the shows and content they love for free.

Samsung says that Galaxy users who own a smartphone from the Galaxy Note20, Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note10 or Galaxy S10 series will be able to enjoy the app this April.

“The growth of Samsung TV Plus has everything to do with the quality of the content, the ease of access and the multi-screen experiences offered,” said Sang Kim, SVP of Product & Marketing for Samsung Electronics. “We are working hard to deliver more to our customers wherever they are – including our mobile offering.”

Earlier this year Samsung TV Plus got a big boost with the launch of the new Vevo music channel. This playlist-packed station arrived in the UK back in February and offers 24-hour access to music videos at no cost.

Explaining more, Kevin McGurn, president of sales and distribution, Vevo said: “In the US, we partnered with Samsung TV Plus during the early days of our OTT expansion. Today, they are one of our top-performing television experiences, with tens of millions of viewers across Vevo channels daily. We are excited to build on this success and do the same in the UK and Europe, but with more localized curation.”

Panasonic rivals Samsung, Sony and LG with launch of its clever new TVs

If you fancy treating yourself to a pin-sharp new telly, then you’re certainly spoilt for choice this year. All the big manufacturers, including Sony, Samsung and LG, have now revealed their new televisions for the upcoming year. Last, but definitely not least, is Panasonic. The Japanese technology company has now given consumers a glimpse of what’s coming to store shelves over the next 12 months, and it certainly looks like an eye-pleasing line-up of big screens.
So, if you’ve been holding off buying a new Smart TV to binge Netflix, or play your shiny new next-generation console – we’ve now seen the full line-up. So, what is Panasonic bringing to the table?

The most premium of the new Panasonic bunch is the new JZ2000, which was actually revealed in January and includes automatic scene selection that adjusts the settings depending on what you happen to be viewing. There’s also improved sound thanks to side-firing speakers and the TV includes a stand that swivels so you can get the perfect viewing angle.

This premier telly has now been joined by Panasonic’s new JZ1500, JZ1000 and JZ980 series which will be available in 65-inch and 55-inch screens. Plus, new for 2021, are smaller 48-inch sizes which means there’s more choice for consumers. As with the JZ2000, these sets benefit from the colour tuning of Stefan Sonnenfeld, Founder and CEO of Company 3, and a trusted collaborator of some of the world’s best filmmakers.

There is a total of three new LED TV series for 2021: the JX940 series (75-inch, 65-inch, 55-inch, 49-inch), the JX850 series (65-inch, 58-inch, 50-inch, 40-inch), and JX800 series (65-inch, 58-inch, 50-inch, 40-inch).

The JX940 series will have particular appeal for sports and gaming enthusiasts. Firstly, like the newly announced OLED TVs, the JX940 also features the new HCX Pro AI processor, meaning it can automatically detect sports broadcasts and optimise the picture quality accordingly.

Intelligent Clear Motion also smooths out dynamic action for flicker-free viewing. The JX800 also introduces the Android TV OS to Panasonic’s line-up which should make it ideal for accessing every streaming service available on the market.

Full pricing will be revealed in the coming weeks, so watch this space.

Currys sale offers cheap Samsung 4K TVs, Google Nest mini, Galaxy Watch and more

Currys is joining Amazon with the launch of a big spring sale which is now underway on the tech retailer’s website. There are some pretty big deals to be grabbed including money off Samsung TVs, Google Nest smart speakers and coffee machines.
Two of the biggest deals sees Samsung’s QLED TV 75-inch telly dropped in price by £2,000 and there’s £651 off a Delonghi Bean to Cup Coffee Machine.

Other deals worth a mention include money off Windows 10 laptops plus you can save money on Samsung tablets, Fitbit smartwatches and Amazon Echo smart speakers.

Speaking about the sale event Ed Connolly, Chief Commercial Officer at Dixons Carphone, says: “We are delighted to be able to offer our customers this incredible selection of deals as part of our Epic Deals. With unmissable savings across a large range of top brands, our customers have the chance of getting their hands on the amazing tech they need to make their lockdown life easier.”

So, if you are looking for a big tech bargain then here are some of the very best offers available right now from Currys.

This article contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission on any sales of products or services we write about. This article was written completely independently, see more details here.

Galaxy app crash bug: Google and Samsung offer important advice on how to fix your phone

The gremlins began on Monday night with many users still suffering from the glitch days later. Luckily, a fix has been released with both Google and Samsung offering advice to users on how to get things back up and running smoothly. The problems seem to stem from something called WebView. This piece of software comes pre-installed on all Android devices and it’s this that needs updating to mend the issues.

Google says that all users should update Android System WebView and Google Chrome via the Google Play.

To do this, navigate to the Play Store app, search for Android System WebView, then tap update. This should solve your app-crashing woes.

Samsung has also revealed its own advice with the company tweeting numerous users with its own fix.

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In the post on social media, Samsung said: “Please remove the Webview Update and then restart the phone. Here are the steps: Go settings > apps > tap the three dots in the top right corner > show system apps > search for Android System WebView > select Uninstall updates.

If the above steps don’t stop your Android apps from crashing, you might need to follow these extra steps

Although this is good advice it seems it’s not working for all Samsung fans.

Numerous posts on Twitter reveal Galaxy fans still having issues with one saying: “Samsung team my apps keep crashing since yesterday and the Android system WebView is disable already on my phone can’t remove it or do anything.what to do ??????”

Whilst another added: “Please help! Google apps keep crashing on Samsung galaxy s8. I am unable to install Android system webview app.”

If the fix hasn’t worked for you then it’s unclear what to do next although more advice from Google and Samsung should be expected soon if the issues are ongoing.

In a statement sent to Express.co.uk, a Google spokesperson said: “We have resolved the issue with WebView that caused some apps on Android to crash for some users. Updating Android System WebView and Google Chrome via Google Play should now resolve the issue.”

Google will FIX crashing Android apps TONIGHT: Gmail, Samsung, Outlook apps to work again

Struggling to open some of your favourite Android apps this week? You’re not alone. An infuriating bug has caused havoc for Android smartphone and tablet owners worldwide – with some of the most popular apps on the platform crashing as soon as you tap on the app icon to open them. The glitch, which was first spotted late on Monday night, has impacted everything from Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Microsoft Outlook, Google Chrome, as well as Amazon and BBC Weather apps on Android. Thankfully, some good news is on the way.
Google issued a fix for the problems yesterday morning, around 12-hours after the first reports of problems started to roll in. However, there are quite a few steps to follow to ensure everything is up-and-running again on your Android phone. If you haven’t tried the four-step process yet, you can find instructions here.

Unfortunately, even then, some users with Google, Samsung, and OnePlus smartphones find themselves still struggling with crashing apps. To try to solve that, Google has revealed some extra steps to help those who desperately need to use their Android apps to work remotely or keep in touch with friends.

But now, the Californian company is going a step further.

A spokesperson for Google has confirmed to Express.co.uk that will begin automatically installing the patch on users’ Android smartphones in the next 24-hours. So, if you haven’t tried to fix the problem yourself – or the steps haven’t resolved the crashing apps on your smartphone – Google is going to automatically tweak your settings and update your handset some time in the next few hours. Since this is a worldwide issue, there’s no exact estimate for UK users. However, we’d expect the update to begin overnight as this is likely to cause the least disruption to Android users (who have already had to endure a fair amount of disruption over the last few days).

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Unable to update Google apps to fix crashing bug? Here’s the fix

Google’s official @Android Twitter account has yet to announce the automatic update that will be rolling out soon. However, it confirmed the initial patch this morning when it tweeted: “A number of users experienced app crashes over the last 24 hours, which has since been fixed. If your device is still affected, please update Android System WebView and/or Google Chrome via Google Play.”

Of course, if you need to use your Android apps right now – and don’t want to wait for the automatic updates to start, we’ve got the initial instructions from Google below.

  • Open Google Play Store on the smartphone or tablet suffering the issues
  • Search for “Android System WebView”
  • Select “Update”. If it doesn’t say “Update”, skip this step
  • Search the Play Store for “Google Chrome”
  • Select “Update”
If the above steps aren’t working – for example, if the Update button crashes as soon as you tap it – then there are some additional steps to try. If you’re unable to update either of the apps above from the Google Play Store, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  • Open your phone’s Settings app.
  • Tap Apps & Notifications > See All Apps > Google Play Store > Storage & Cache > Clear Data

However, it’s worth noting that Google is warning Android users that the above the steps will clear Google Play Store settings like parental controls and auto-update preferences. So, if you’re trying to get a shared tablet or phone working – you’ll need to remember to head back into your settings and set up age limits again as they will have been wiped. That’s not ideal… but maybe still a little better than not being able to load any apps.

You don’t need to understand exactly how “Android System WebView” works to fix the app crash problems. In a nutshell, this is core part of the Android operating system that powers a number of Google-developed and third-party apps. “Android System WebView” is tied with Chrome and enables allows Android apps to display content from the web.

That’s why you need both Android System WebView and Google Chrome updated to fix the problem.

Since the problem is caused by this core system component, it’s also why deleting and reinstalling the apps that are crashing – whether it be Microsoft Outlook, Amazon, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, or whatever – will not solve the problem.