Samsung legacy platform enables the user to combine Internet and web technologies into TVs and set top boxes. It also enables TVs to integrate with external devices like mobile phones, tablets, and other pointing devices using the web development platform as a convergence medium. Developing applications for Samsung Smart TV is different from developing for web applications because of the varied differences in the environments in which the application is developed.
Samsung Smart TV platform features
The development in the Samsung Smart TV platform is mainly concentrated to three major resolutions. The following are the supported resolutions
- 960×540 px
- 1024×768 px
- 1920×1080 px
The TV engines are based on two browser engines namely Gecko (for the models till 2011) and Webkit for the latest models before Tizen. All the developed applications will be finally running inside the TV hardware. The TV apps have a different set of external hardware to interact with like mouse, gesture, voice controls, TV remote etc.
Web platform features
The web platform uses the same web technology used in the TV, but the environment differs. The application has to be responsive and has to support almost the available resolutions in desktops and mobile. It also runs on various browsers with various engines including Gecko and Webkit. Also the external devices for interaction differs from the TV. The applications will be running in all the places where the current web engine is integrated.
Additional features in TV
Developing for Samsung TV provides the following areas for development. The TV API has provisions for working with audio and video content. The content can be either from the local application or over a network. The streaming can be for either audio or video. The APIs for interactivity where the user can interact with devices like remote, gestures etc, APIs for convergence where the same app can control various devices at once, the APIs for AllShare that enables content sharing between devices a easy task, SSO (Single Sign On) where multiple applications can benefit from a single sign in, IME (Input Method Editor) where the user can enter content into the applications using the remote control with ease of use. All these features when combined with a well defined application model will a well defined feature set will help us in enabling a stable TV application with a decent user experience.
This post showed how the same web development environment can be used for developing applications for the TV and the browser. Even though the development scenario differs between the TV and the web in the case of hardware, devices etc, the technology used to develop applications remains the same. The TV platform with its own well defined set of APIs for accessing various feature set enables the developer to make use of the TV specific features in the developed applications.