Google TV devices now have full-screen autoplaying video ads like Fire TVs

Google TV devices have long had autoplaying full-screen video ads on their home screen, far before Amazon added them to Fire TV devices last year. However, those ads have always been for various TV shows and movies. Google has now crossed a new line of annoying by including full-length video ads for products and physical goods unrelated to streaming TV. As Reddit users thevincentasteroid and MMD3_ discovered, turning on a Google TV Chromecast device now blasts you with autoplaying video ads for fast food.

The saving grace for Google TV devices, which has never been possible on Fire TV devices, is that it is easy to install an alternate home screen launcher to avoid the ads entirely. While Amazon actively blocks methods to bypass its home screen on Fire TVs, Google does not, and changing the home screen is a relatively simple process. That said, as the Google TV home screen becomes more annoying and intrusive, I suspect it won’t be long before Google begins protecting its revenue stream by also blocking alternate home screen launchers.

If you’re fed up with intrusive home screens on Google TV and Fire TV devices and are thinking that Roku devices might be your saving grace, think again. Roku executives speaking at CES earlier this month said to expect to see “immerse advertisers in more parts of the home screen.” Whether that means Roku devices will also be autoplaying full-screen video ads is unknown, but more annoying ads on the home screens of all popular streaming devices seem like an unavoidable future.

17 comments
  1. Robert Higgins says:

    I’m waiting for a good android streaming box, not Amazon, Google or NVIDIA.

  2. Michael Swingley says:

    That’s all we need more ads!
    That’s what is ruining the streaming world and TV. Just about done with it all!

  3. LDBetaGuy says:

    The Apple TV Home Screen is still free of ads. I’m talking about the Apple TV streaming box, not the Apple TV app.

  4. Mike says:

    Pretty soon, every day is going to be like September 19th, the “International Talk Like a Pirate Day”. If they’re going to make everybody act like a pirate, we may as well talk like one, too.

  5. Kary says:

    My Fire Cube doesn’t have anything like what’s displayed in the picture for this story. It’s not video and it’s only been for shows (although an MGM+ free for 6 months has appeared too).

  6. Danny says:

    Well that’s why I use Apple TV … zero ads

  7. Andres says:

    En latinoamerica no existe eso

  8. Tingo says:

    When amazon change there os and my current fire device dies there will be no sideloading anyway. At that point if apple is still clear of ads that will be my next device. Anyone that can produce an ad free homescreen device with full streaming service certification and the playstore with or without side loading could make a fortune.

    • Kary says:

      Tingo, you’re making an assumption that side loading won’t be available. Currently it is, and currently you can also install the Google Play Store on Fire Tablets (not sure about on Fire Cubes). So I don’t know why you assume that would change.

  9. clint says:

    hmmm does this also happen when using “app only mode” ?

    https://www.tomsguide.com/opinion/hidden-chromecast-with-google-tv-feature

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