In this article, I will talk about the operating system of televisions and whether it is possible to update the television’s operating system to a new version. I don’t mean just to put a new patch (e.g., 2354 instead of 2351), but for example, to update the Tizen OS in a Samsung TV from version 5 to version 6.
The short answer is that this is impossible; the TVs do not have a transition to a new operating system version.
Why you can’t update Tizen OS on your Samsung TV to a new version
You cannot update the Tizen OS because the TV uses a particular way of recording information compared to the computer.
Suppose the computer has only basic commands written to the permanent memory (BIOS) (these commands allow the device to operate with minimal parameters, such as the minimum screen resolution). The installed components are automatically detected and configured when the operating system is installed. Screen resolution is set, memory is checked, and so on; once the OS is installed, the computer is ready to use. Therefore, you can install any version of the OS that is supported on your computer.
Conversely, televisions have many more parameters recorded: screen matrix type (screen model), supported screen frequency, region, and many other parameters. These settings affect the operation of the TV, and if you select them incorrectly, the TV may not work or even start. The TV does not automatically detect the component settings. As a result, one TV model can have several modifications with different parameters (depending on the region and configuration).
The manufacturer must consider all these nuances when updating because if they make a mistake, they can break the TV. In order to repair it, you will need to rewrite the correct parameters into the chips, which can only be done in the service center.
Such a situation happened to buyers of Samsung players in 2020. When turned on, the player would connect to Samsung’s servers and download an incorrectly configured file. Thousands of Blu-ray players and home theater owners could not use their devices.
To fix the problem, they had to send their devices to service centers to reflash the memory chips.
How the process of updating the OS on your Smart TV works
The TVs do not have a global operating system update; the update does not affect the settings. Only the user interaction shell update is downloaded. The app store or browser can be updated; more on this later.
Remember that manufacturers typically support their TVs for 3-5 years. After that, the TV is considered outdated, and updates are no longer released. After 7-10 years, the TV is considered obsolete; updates are only released for critical ones and very rarely. Most likely, the TV cannot be repaired at an authorized service center due to a lack of parts.
Tizen browser update TV Samsung, update Apps
Now I want to talk about updating apps on your Samsung TV, particularly the browser. I understand that sometimes the browsers on TVs can be awkward compared to the browsers on phones or computers. So apps are updated regardless of the operating system. You may have noticed when you want to go to Smart on older TVs or apps on newer TVs, right after you turn on your TV, you may get a message that it’s unavailable due to an update.
So the browser made with Tizen OS can’t be updated forcibly; if there is an update, it will be updated when the TV is turned on. After starting, the TV connects to Samsung servers and checks for application updates; if there is a new version of the browser, the Internet browser application will be removed, and the new one will be loaded.
Updating other apps on your Samsung TV
Third-party services such as Amazon or Netflix apps offered on Samsung TVs are not Samsung’s responsibility; the developer of the streaming video service promotes the app. So if it decides to update its app for new TVs and older platforms, it will do so. The TV will check the availability of the app itself and update it. So you don’t have to worry about updating the app.
I have an old Samsung TV; the apps don’t work anymore.
Yes, it could be. In 2015, Samsung launched the Tizen OS for its TVs. Older TVs stopped getting updates, and streaming service developers found supporting apps for older TVs impractical. After all, not only do you need to make a TV app, but you also need to support specially configured servers to work with older apps. TVs are gradually breaking down, and there is usually a natural decline in TVs using old applications; when the company sees that the number of old TVs is negligible, support for the application will be discontinued; it will work on the TV but will not be able to connect to the servers to receive video.