Top critical review
170 people found this helpful
Not so Smart TV
on 2 July 2012
Just to be clear, the TV side of this model is excellent with pin sharp clarity and a nice bright display. The built in Freeview HD tunes in easily and reception on all the stations I have tried is excellent. So far so good.
It's when you come to explore the Smart TV functions that you may be disappointed. I connected the TV to my home Ethernet network by cable. Initially, BBC I-Player didn't work, but after downloading an update (automatic) this started to function and now works well. A web browser gives access to the Internet but text entries can only be made using an on screen keyboard, selecting each individual letter using the arrow keys and pressing OK on the TV remote control. This is painfully slow and you can forget any notion of writing or replying to emails via the TV. Updating your Facebook page or using Twitter is near impossible.
To remedy this, I enquired of Samsung Customer Service Centre whether I could buy a Wireless Keyboard to go with my model and was told unequivocally by e-mail that the VG-KBD1000 keyboard would work with my TV. Unfortunately, this turns out to be untrue. The VG-KBD1000 does not work with the UE40EH5300 despite the keyboard being advertised as 'an accessory for Smart TV'. This should mean that the keyboard will work with any Smart TV.. and I went to the trouble of asking Samsung first!
Many of the remaining Smart features involve signing up with a monthly fee, for example for Netflix or Lovefilm. Samsung Family Story seems to be a Facebook-like application, but I don't really understand how anyone could use it effectively without a keyboard. You Tube on TV seems worthwhile though.
I have managed to link my TV to the Shared Folder on my main computer and to the Shared Folder on my netbook via the Wi-Fi Dongle (which does work). This lets you access and play shared media. Viewing photos and running a slide show works nicely.
It is frustrating that I can see the potential of some of the Smart functions/applications but can't really use or explore them properly because text entry is so slow.
In my latest email from Samsung it was suggested that a third party wired keyboard might work. From searching on the Internet, I think this is almost certainly a non-starter. To get a keyboard to work through a USB connection requires a software driver and there is no way of installing this on the TV.
If I had known all of this, I might have shelled out for a model with a higher spec including bluetooth and then I would have been a happy bunny. However, I didn't and I'm not.