When a new version of Android launches, it’s usually a big deal, at least when it comes to phones. That’s not the case with Android TV as version 12 has now officially launched but it doesn’t matter to anyone but developers since the only device that it’s available on is the ADT-3 Developer Kit. Google’s own flagship Andoird TV device, the 2020 Chromecast, is still running Android TV 10 with no indication that it will be updated. Similarly, the newest Amazon Fire TVs are based on Android 9 and have also shown no indication of being updated. Read more ›
Nvidia has confirmed on its product forum that the Shield TV will not be updating to Android 10, as spotted by @mrjuzmafia. An employee post states that “SHIELD development is still full steam ahead” and that “there is still a lot of development going into SHIELD” but Nvidia has decided to skip updating to Android 10 because “the effort was large and there was essential no impact to end users.” The Tivo Stream 4K, on the other hand, appears to be set to receive an Android 10 update, according to the Google Play Console, which @AndroidTV_Rumor spotted. Read more ›
Amazon has added a powerful new feature to the Alexa app for Android devices. It’s now possible to set Alexa as the default voice assistant on Android. Doing so will replace the Google Assistant in certain scenarios with Alexa. This lets you make Alexa requests without needing to first launch the Alexa app. Read more ›
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HBO Now is currently only available on Apple devices due to an exclusivity deal between the two companies. Apple’s exclusivity deal is expected to end in about a month and, unsurprisingly, it looks like the Google Play Store will be the next platform to get the new service. The announcement was made during today’s big Google I/O keynote presentation. No specifics were given during the announcement, but HBO has said the service will arrive on Android “this summer” with support for casting to Chromecast devices. Interestingly, the announcement was made during the Chromecast portion of Google’s keynote, not during the brief Android TV portion. It wouldn’t surprise me if HBO Now was initially incompatible with Android TV when it arrives in the Google Play Store.
This announcement is good news for Fire TV users since it doesn’t take much to release a Fire TV version of the app once HBO finishes their Android version. We may even be able to sideload and use the Android version on Fire TV devices while we wait for official support from HBO.