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June 6, 2018

What happens when your smart Android TV goes dumb?

by John_A

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If a manufacturer abandons one of the biggest purchases in a home, is there anything that can be done?

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Chinese manufacturer LeEco did exactly what a lot of us expected to do. It blew into the U.S. with all the bling and bluster you’d expect from a Chinese upstart that was looking to basically be the next Amazon, only without the fuss of time and build-up.

And then it flamed out and closed up shop.

But that doesn’t mean it didn’t actually sell some products in the U.S. Maybe not a lot, but enough to make the aftermath something we have to think about. The low-cost phones are one thing. But what about a thousand-dollar television that’s not exactly something you’d just toss in the trash? What happens when an Android TV-powered television is abandoned by the company that birthed it, and it starts to become unusable due to bit rot?

You’ve got a couple options. You could hack at it, which is fun. But frankly it’s also not something I want to put any time into — this thing basically is DOA.

Or, you could take that smart TV and make it dumb. And that’s exactly what I did.

Read: What to do when your smart TV goes dumb at Cordcutters.com

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