Google TV is adding personalized profiles, better info in ambient mode

Get ready for recommendations on Google TV to become better, and more personalized, with the addition of top-level profiles. Starting first with Chromecast with Google TV and smart TVs from Sony and TCL, you’ll soon get recommendations that are relevant to you instead of, say, your spouse or kids — which is important for the obvious reasons.

The personalization will extend into watchlists, too, as well as Google Assistant, so you’ll get more of the right results more of the time.

The addition will mean adding a full Google account to Google TV. Google didn’t go into details on if there’d be any sort of password protection, or if one user will be able to hop into another’s account unfettered. It did, however, say that downloaded apps and logins can be used across profiles, so you’re not effectively setting up a new device two or three or four times for each user.

Google TV ambient cards.
Google

Also getting a sprucing up is one the most underrated features of Google TV — ambient mode. You’ll start to get more personalized information and recommendations there, too, including weather, news, sports scores, and more. Here’s how Google puts it:

Google TV already lets you see your favorite memories from Google Photos when your TV is idle. Now, we’re making ambient mode more useful by bringing in more personalized information and recommendations at a glance. From the latest game score to the weather, news, and more, your TV will keep you up to date with info based on your profile. You can even scroll through the on-screen shortcuts to jump into your photos or start playing your music and podcasts with just a click. If you are off for a longer break, your TV will shift fully to your ambient mode’s photos or curated artwork after a few minutes.

One more addition coming with this update is the inclusion of low-cost streaming service Philo into the live TV provider options, along with YouTube TV and Sling TV. So if you’re using the $25-a-month streaming service, you’ll see it integrated right into the Google TV home screen.

Google says that profiles will be available to everyone globally, while the ambient mode cards will only be available in the United States at first.

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