11 Things to Consider Before Buying a Smart TV

Whether you are planning to switch from a regular TV or just want to upgrade your smart TV, it becomes hard for most of us to make our big purchases, especially when we are not more into tech. Worry not; today we will discuss some important points to consider before buying a Smart TV.

Smart TVs have become very popular in the past few years, offering features that traditional TVs could only dream of.

But if you don’t have much understanding of these devices, you will end up buying a smart TV that does not match your expectations. We have included some points in this article that you should consider before buying a TV.

What is a Smart TV?

A Smart TV has an operating system that allows you to access streaming content without plugging in an external device. Users can also sync their smart TV to their phone, tablet, and laptop to access media or to enjoy their content on a larger screen.

In simple words, a smart TV is a traditional TV with integrated Internet and interactive Web 2.0 features that allow you to browse the internet, stream music and videos, play games, and do many other things.

Points to Consider Before Buying Smart TV

Now that you know what exactly a smart TV is, you might be wondering what you should consider before purchasing one. Here are a few things you can consider:

Display Size

The ideal size of the TV varies from user to user depending on their budget and the space where they want to place it. The price of a TV increases with the increasing screen size. For the same specs, a large screen is perfect for a large room, and a smaller screen size TV is perfect for a smaller space.

Display Size

Screen Resolution

Resolution is another thing you should consider before buying a smart TV. Keep in mind that the higher the resolution, the better the picture quality you will get from it. Most TVs available on the market have 720p, 1080p, 4K, and 8K resolutions.

High-defintion resolution, whether it’s 720 pixels (HD) or 1080 pixels (FHD), is the most common for most TVs. They are okay and fine; they will not put a load on your pockets either.

Now, 4K is something you can buy if you want to spend more, as it will give you better picture quality. Also, many streaming services nowadays offer 4K content, so you can take advantage of it.

Screen Resolution

8K is still new to the TV market, and there are only a few options available with a high price tag. If your pocket allows it, you can buy one and make your TV future-proof.

Screen Type

You are surely aware of LED or LCD since show owners or retailers sell TVs by referring smart TV display as LED or LCD. But what does it mean? LCD refers to liquid-crystal display which uses a backlight behind the panel to create an image.

Manufacturers are moving from listing their TVs as LCD to LED, OLED, and QLED. However, they are a type of LCD TV. LED stands for light-emitting diode. LED TVs uses diodes to light the panel.

QLED means quantum dot light emitting diode. The only difference between this technology and LEDs is that quantum dots are used instead of conventional LEDs. These tiny dots provide a brighter image than standard LEDs.

OLED refers to an organic light-emitting diode. It also creates an image using small dots known as sub-pixels. However, unlike QLED, each sub-pixel generates its own light independently rather than relying on surrounding sub-pixels, which gives you sharper and brighter visuals with wider viewing angles.

Screen Type

OLED displays offer greater contrast ratios compared to LED or QLED. In terms of price, OLED TVs are among the most expensive on the market. Next, you will get QLED, then LED, and then LCD. If you choose OLED ensure to follow tips to avoid burn-in.

Refresh Rate

The refresh rate is measured in hertz (Hz), which tells how many times the TV shows an image in a second. For example, if the TV has a 45 Hz display, it means the TV screen refreshes at 45 frames per second.

Refresh Rate

The higher the refresh rate, the smoother the motion on the screen will be. A high refresh rate is excellent for watching sports or playing games. However, most LED TVs are limited to 60 Hz, so if you are looking for a higher one, look for QLED or OLED instead, as they come with 90 Hz, 100 Hz, or even a higher refresh rate.

But this does not mean that LED TVs do not have a higher refresh rate; brands like LG, Sony, Samsung, and others now even offer 75Hz or even higher refresh rates with their LED TVs.

Sound

If you want to rely on the TV’s internal speakers, sound is another thing you should consider before buying a smart TV. For better audio quality, go for a TV that has Dolby Audio or Dolby Atmos. However, even after spending too much on the TV, if you still do not get the great sound, you have no choice left but to invest money in a soundbar.

Sound

Apps

As we have mentioned earlier, you can access streaming content without any external device; hence, another thing you should consider is whether the TV has all the popular apps or not.

Almost all smart TVs have some apps preinstalled on them, and the most popular TVs have their own app stores from which you can download apps. For example, Samsung has the Samsung Smart Hub, and LG has the LG Content Store, from which you can find and install apps. Android TVs come with the largest collection of Apps.

Before purchasing any smart TV, check for their installed and available apps on the app store.

Connectivity

Even though all smart TVs have important ports like HDMI, USB, etc., you should check whether the TV has at least one latest HDMI port on it for connecting streaming devices or consoles. Older HDMI doesn’t support some displays and devices or cast screen at limited refresh rate and resolution.

In addition to that, you should also check for USB ports, for connecting accessories and drives. Check and make sure it has a number of different ports for connecting different devices, like multiple HDMI ports, USB ports, and audio outputs to connect various devices like gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, or soundbars.

Connectivity

Additionally, make sure it has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities for wireless connectivity.

Operating System

The operating system is another thing you should consider when buying a new smart TV.

OS not only impacts the user experience but also plays an important role in installing applications.

If the TV is powered by Google TV, you will have a wider variety of applications to install than other TVs’ OS, like LG’s WebOS, Samsung’s Tizen, etc.

However, you can bypass this hurdle using the Roku streaming stick, Google TV stick, or others, but then you will have to spend more money on these devices.

Software Experience

Software experience is another important thing that you need to consider before buying a smart TV. It can impact your overall enjoyment and usability.

To give you an idea, a well-designed software interface can make navigating apps and settings effortless, while a poorly designed interface can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction.

Before purchasing a TV, research the operating system of the smart TV. Popular OS like Android TV, WebOS, Fire TV, and Tizen offer a user-friendly interface and allow to install a wide range of apps.

You can also check reviews from other users on different social websites and forums. Visit a showroom if possible to experience the software interface of the smart TV.

Price

The most important thing you should consider after selecting all the features, like size, resolution, refresh rate, display type, and others, is its price.

If you are tight on budget, you should compromise on the OS and Software Experience. Why? It’s because you can buy a TV Stick anytime to change your OS and Software, but changing Display and Hardware require buying a new TV.

But if you have no barrier to the price, you can opt for all the top-notch features.

Also, if you go for popular brands like Samsung, Sony, LG, and others, you will have to spend more, while if you want the same specs at a lower price, you can go with brands like Insignia, Hisense, Vizio, and others. Here you need to consider the service from the chosen brand in your area.

Warranty

While most smart TVs offer a warranty of at least one year, you can extend the warranty by paying upfront. Warranty extension makes a lot more sense when you are spending a good amount on the new TV. You can skip the extension for lower-range TVs.

Let me share a recent incident involving my team member, Haneet. A minor issue with the transformer near his location caused voltage fluctuations, resulting in problems with his Smart TV’s motherboard which was completely dead when examined by the company’s support team.

Fortunately, the TV was still under an extended warranty period, so the company replaced the motherboard completely free, which would have otherwise cost almost half the price of the TV.

Wrapping Up

So, these are some of the important things you should consider purchasing when buying a smart TV. If you have selected a TV that’s excellent in all the features except the app availability, then you can opt for Chromecast, Firestick, or another streaming device to get all of them on your TV.

If you have any questions related to the article, let us know in the comments.

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AUTHOR.

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Harsh Saxena

Hi! I am Harsh and I write about technology on different websites. I frequently write about these topics and cover them. I am available on Twitter at @Harsh4saxena or Email me at harsh4saxena@gmail.com to send in your feedback and tips. Worked at GadgetsToUse, BrowserToUse, DailyTechByte, FreshFounder, and with many other websites as an author and researcher.

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