Author Topic: Samsung Smart TV Dongle  (Read 1377 times)

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Offline Simon

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Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« on: May 20, 2017, 13:55:54 »
Does anyone know if a specific WiFi dongle is required to connect a Samsung Smart TV to the internet?  The Samsung brand models seem to be quite expensive, at around £40, but there are cheaper alternatives.  Can you use any WiFi dongle, or does it have to be one for a TV?
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Offline Lance

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2017, 20:52:27 »
Assume you've double checked it doesn't have wifi built in?!
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Offline Simon

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2017, 21:36:31 »
It's not my TV, but I did ask that, and was told that when they try to set up the network functions, the first thing it asks for is a dongle.
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Offline MisterW

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2017, 09:20:19 »
If it has a wired network port then get something like one of these http://www.argos.co.uk/product/5987685 . You'll need to connect it initially to a PC to configure it. Set it to Wireless bridge mode and connect it to the wifi network. Then just plug the TV into it's network port, the TV should just connect as though it was wired directly to the router.

NB you can get more details and download the manual from here http://www.edimax.co.uk/edimax/merchandise/merchandise_detail/data/edimax/uk/wi-fi_range_extenders_n300/ew-7438rpn_mini/

Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2017, 10:32:59 »
Does anyone know if a specific WiFi dongle is required to connect a Samsung Smart TV to the internet?  The Samsung brand models seem to be quite expensive, at around £40, but there are cheaper alternatives.  Can you use any WiFi dongle, or does it have to be one for a TV?
What age? Your better off getting a power plug and connecting is via wired network (but piggy backing of power plug/wifi extender or going to a full router if you wish). As MisterW says.

Most new tvs have wifi built in. This was manufactures cheeping out and trying to make extra cash.

Also, why do they want the internet? Depending on age, it may not even be compatible with anything, and a Google chromecast connected to your phone would give more features (but need better understanding... so are they tech literate? ;) ). Some of the not too old Samsungs have had iPlayer updated. It was mainly the older ones and older Sonys that dropped off when apps moved on. Though saying that, if it's just to see facebook, it may work.
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Offline Simon

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2017, 10:59:22 »
Thanks for the suggestions.  The reason behind this is that a "non-techy" relative has had a Samsung Smart TV for about 3-4 years, but has never been able to use the 'Smart' services such as iPlayer, etc, as the TV asks for a dongle when trying to set up an Internet connection, so she has never bothered going any further.  MisterW's suggestion of a WiFi range extender would be a cheaper option than a Samsung dongle, but it would mean a trip up to London for me to set it up for her, as she wouldn't have a clue.  Presumably, a dongle would just plug in and all she would need to do is enter her WiFi password, which I think she could manage, so that would be the preferred option.
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Offline MisterW

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2017, 14:23:55 »
Quote
The reason behind this is that a "non-techy" relative
Exactly how non techy are they ? Ben's suggestion of home plugs might be an option , all they need to do is plug them in and connect the Ethernet cables. They are usually self configuring. Slightly more expensive than the wifi bridge but still cheaper than the Samsung dongle http://www.argos.co.uk/product/5742734

Offline Simon

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2017, 16:10:32 »
I'll forward the suggestion, but I won't hold my breath. 
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Offline john

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2017, 00:12:34 »
I have a Samung 'smart' TV that's about 4 years old. I don't think I would buy another one though as I've had some issues with it.

Firstly quite often when I switch it on I get sound but no picture and I have to switch it off and on again to resolve this.

Secondly I have media, music, photos and videos stored on a NAS drive and although the TV has built in WiFi for a couple of years now it no longer finds any media files when using the WiFi connection (although it lists the folders that they are in). I've spoken to Samsung support over the telephone and they were unable to resolve this. It finds the media okay using a wired connection, I use TP-Link powerline adaptors to connect the TV to my network and I would therefore recommend these over WiFi as I find that they are more reliable and easier to set up although you need to plug in ethernet cables but these should be possible for your friend to use. Even with a wired connection it won't fast forward/back movies held on my NAS.

Finally if I invoke YouTube I now get a message to say it will no longer be supported after the 30th June. The TV came with a 'smart'  Samsung BluRay player as part of a deal and this will no longer support YouTube after June too. The BluRay player uses WiFi to connect and this has no problems finding media on my NAS.

If apps are no longer going to be supported then I think it would be better to buy a cheap external smart box rather than rely on the TV's smart functions. I also have an older Sony smart TV and this stopped supporting YouTube and the BBC iPlayer a couple of years ago but it will fast forwards/back movies on the NAS okay alhthough some movies it cannot find. This also connects using powerline adaptors.

If I were to replace either of the TV's I'm not sure which brand to use. LG's seem to have a good reputation and my daughter has had a small LG smart TV for about a year. I tried it when I first set it up (with another powerline adaptor) and the smart apps seemed to work okay but she doesn't access my NAS and only uses the Netflix app.

With the increasing rate at which TV features are being added I'm in no hurry to replace either my Sony or my Samsung TV anytime soon though.


Offline MisterW

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2017, 08:00:21 »
Quote
Finally if I invoke YouTube I now get a message to say it will no longer be supported after the 30th June. The TV came with a 'smart'  Samsung BluRay player as part of a deal and this will no longer support YouTube after June too.
It's not just Samsung! Youtube are pulling the flash based  app and replacing with an HTML5 based one. The Smart TV manufacturers are unable to support the new app on some models. You can still get youtube via the built-in browser by going to www.youtube.com.

Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2017, 10:57:28 »
When not selling them, I always recommended getting "dumb" TVs and a box to play content/media/stream. Why? Because no company supports the device for longer than 5 years, most stop after 2. So do you want a new TV every 2 years, or just a new Chromecasht/firestick?

With TVs at ~£300-3000 and the sticks/DVD players at £30-100 you can guess which is the cheaper option.... Yep, a £3 HDMI cable from the laptop/PC!  :whistle: :P
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Offline Simon

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2017, 11:59:49 »
That's a little worrying.  Why can't​ the apps, such as YouTube, on the "Smart" devices get updated via software updates?  I have a Sony Blu-ray player with WiFi and apps such as iPlayer and YouTube built in, and am in the process of buying a second Smart TV (Panasonic) for the bedroom.  It will be disappointing if the bundled apps only work for a couple of years.  In fact, I'd go so far as to say it would be worth a warranty claim under the six year rule (Sale of Goods Act), if the TV stopped functioning as purchased, in less than five years. 
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Offline john

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2017, 16:54:23 »
When not selling them, I always recommended getting "dumb" TVs and a box to play content/media/stream. Why? Because no company supports the device for longer than 5 years, most stop after 2. So do you want a new TV every 2 years, or just a new Chromecasht/firestick?

With TVs at ~£300-3000 and the sticks/DVD players at £30-100 you can guess which is the cheaper option.... Yep, a £3 HDMI cable from the laptop/PC!  :whistle: :P

I agree, I've bought a 3 metre HDMI cable to get the no longer working apps on my Sony TV, not as convenient but more reliable.

That's a little worrying.  Why can't the apps, such as YouTube, on the "Smart" devices get updated via software updates?  I have a Sony Blu-ray player with WiFi and apps such as iPlayer and YouTube built in, and am in the process of buying a second Smart TV (Panasonic) for the bedroom.  It will be disappointing if the bundled apps only work for a couple of years.  In fact, I'd go so far as to say it would be worth a warranty claim under the six year rule (Sale of Goods Act), if the TV stopped functioning as purchased, in less than five years. 

Unfortunately, they usually cover themselves by saying that any apps are not included in the warranty because they are provided by a third party.

Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #13 on: Jun 01, 2017, 09:16:38 »
That's a little worrying.  Why can't​ the apps, such as YouTube, on the "Smart" devices get updated via software updates?  I have a Sony Blu-ray player with WiFi and apps such as iPlayer and YouTube built in, and am in the process of buying a second Smart TV (Panasonic) for the bedroom.  It will be disappointing if the bundled apps only work for a couple of years.  In fact, I'd go so far as to say it would be worth a warranty claim under the six year rule (Sale of Goods Act), if the TV stopped functioning as purchased, in less than five years. 

Yeah, they do. You'll get a couple of updates.

There are 2 problems. One hardware, these things are made to spec and made cheaply. Where as PCs/tablets are made to general computing and/or for the reason of watching youtube, so get more updates. The second problem is unlike phones/tablets the TVs/DVD players are now made to sell sell sell the latest via not improvements (as you get with the Samsung/iPhone upgrades), but obsoletion instead. Add to that, most of the "apps" are just webpages. So anything using proprietary "code" outside of HTML cannot get support unless they code it in. :P

They want you to get a new TV/DVD player every 2-3 years, but have run out of ideas on how to do so, so either as an unintended consequence or for actual profit, they chase the "latest big thing" which is just a craze, and forget they even had other options/products.

I've seen Sony, Panasonic and LG go through about 3 OSs in 3 years. Each one loosing support as the next comes along (the first is usually the longest supported mind, and Samsung was the slowest to swap them out). After HDR they will probably think of some other gimmik...
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Offline john

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #14 on: Jun 01, 2017, 10:37:20 »

..... After HDR they will probably think of some other gimmik...

Like this .... ?

Or even this !!!


« Last Edit: Jun 01, 2017, 10:44:22 by john »

Offline Lance

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #15 on: Jun 07, 2017, 17:30:12 »
The best thing which could happen to TVs at the moment is ensuring that all broadcast content is at least HD. I am amazed at how many channels are still SD only.
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Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #16 on: Jun 07, 2017, 19:08:26 »
You can't ban old content. :P

Though I agree the channels cheaping out on quality of broadcast/stream is annoying. I stopped watching TV when I saw the jpeging (though that was a LONG time ago :P ).
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Offline nowster

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #17 on: Jun 07, 2017, 23:27:48 »
Though I agree the channels cheaping out on quality of broadcast/stream is annoying. I stopped watching TV when I saw the jpeging (though that was a LONG time ago :P ).
MPEGging, surely. Some of the music channels are running at bitrates lower than 1Mbps.

Standard definition resolution is 720x576 (or 702x576). Many of these channels run at half that.

Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #18 on: Jun 08, 2017, 11:58:41 »
Interlaced, so they do run at half? Yeah, Mpeg is just a fancy Jpeg? Right? :D  ;)
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Offline nowster

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #19 on: Jun 08, 2017, 16:55:31 »
Interlaced, so they do run at half? Yeah, Mpeg is just a fancy Jpeg? Right? :D  ;)
Not interlaced, half.

Offline Technical Ben

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Re: Samsung Smart TV Dongle
« Reply #20 on: Jun 09, 2017, 20:43:41 »
... I know the definition between the two is tricky, so I'm trusting you on your word... at which point it must look  :yuk:
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