Are Smart TVs Bluetooth Capable?


are smart tvs bluetooth capable

Is it possible that smart TVs are Bluetooth capable? Because besides having so many different interesting features such as screen mirroring, Web Browsing, and so on,

it came to my mind that Bluetooth is an ever-evolving thing and it has been setting aside slowly from smart TVs and its capabilities.

Some smart TVs in circulation today are Bluetooth enabled, but this is typically reserved for premium models and was only integrated with TVs in 2016. You should be able to tell if your TV is Bluetooth enabled by a Bluetooth symbol on the box, button on the remote, or reviewing your owner’s manual.

There are many questions that come to mind when understanding your smart TV and its capabilities.

What makes it “smart?” How does Bluetooth work and when was it introduced into TV manufacturing?

What type of devices can you connect to it? Is there any benefit to having a Bluetooth enabled smart TV?

How can you tell if your TV has Bluetooth? The rest of this article will answer all of these questions, so continue reading to find out! 

What Is a Smart TV?

A Smart TV is a traditional television set that comes equipped with extra features to allow integrated internet connectivity and web services, allowing users to stream music, TV shows, movies, pictures, and more.

Oftentimes, the operating system and software apps come preloaded on the TV, so all you’ll need to do is power it on and connect it to your home Wi-Fi connection. 

These TVs come with a public software development kit (SDK), so third party vendors can develop applications that will integrate with smart TVs that can be downloaded once it’s connected to an internet source.

Applications can be downloaded from an app store that comes preloaded on the TV itself. 

The idea of Smart TVs was first conceptualized in Japan in the early ‘90s, but they became more universally adopted in the mid-2000s.

Samsung was the first vendor to produce a smart TV and was followed shortly thereafter by a few big-name brands like Sony and Westinghouse

What Is Bluetooth? 

So, how do smart TVs integrate Bluetooth into their operating systems? First, you need to understand a bit about what Bluetooth is and the most common uses for it. 

Bluetooth is a wireless technology standard that is used for exchanging data between fixed and mobile devices over short distances using short-length ultra high frequency (UHF) radio waves.

It acts as a standard wire replacement system for interconnecting devices meant to communicate with one another, like headphones with mobile devices, TVs with multimedia devices like gaming consoles or voice-controlled remotes, and radios with speaker systems. 

Bluetooth was first developed in 1989 by Nils Rydbeck of Ericsson Mobile in Lund, Sweden.

His intent was to develop wireless headsets, but he was later approached by research and development engineers at IBM looking to integrate his technology with laptop computers.

It was finally integrated with computing technology in 1998 and is still extremely popular today with laptops and laptop accessories like Bluetooth enabled mice and keyboards. 

Connecting two Bluetooth enabled devices together creates an ad-hoc short-wave network called a piconet.

With this protocol, consumers can connect up to eight devices at a time on the same network. This is what allows you to connect multiple devices to your TV at once. 

The primary use of Bluetooth when connecting mobile devices is for audio broadcasting, which is why the most popular devices available today to connect to a Bluetooth enabled TV are for enhancing sound.

Smart TVs were first integrated with Bluetooth technology when Bluetooth version 5.0 was introduced in 2016. 

Is There a Benefit to Having Bluetooth on a smart TV?

are smart tvs bluetooth capable

Having a Bluetooth enabled television allows you to connect certain devices to your TV that will enhance your experience, such as speakers, gaming controllers, remote controllers, and even some mobile devices (with exceptions), all without the use of a bunch of wires. 

However, because of the nature of Bluetooth technology, having a Bluetooth enabled TV is not going to be a gamechanger for you in terms of feature set.

Most smart TVs come equipped with wireless capabilities, which is more widely utilized than Bluetooth, especially because of the smart TV’s ability to access the internet.

Additionally, using the current version of Bluetooth (5.2) to stream content is going to be lackluster in comparison to streaming over Wi-Fi-capable devices.

Bluetooth is currently able to stream data at a rate of 2.1 Mbps, while Wi-Fi can stream at over 100 Mbps, ensuring the quality of your content will be much better. 

Major TV brands like Sony, Samsung, LG, and more are constantly looking for ways to enhance the normal TV experience, so you can expect many more Bluetooth devices to become integrative with your TV in the near future, as Bluetooth protocols and capabilities expand. 

What Are the Types of Devices Can You Connect to a Smart TV?

Most of the devices you can connect to your Bluetooth TV are audio related. Here is a short list of devices you can connect: 

  • Bluetooth Speakers – Pair Bluetooth speakers or a soundbar to your TV for enhanced audio quality and volume. This is common with surround sound systems
  • Gaming Console Controllers – Many gaming consoles, like Playstation 4 and XBOX, have wireless controllers that can be paired directly with your TV. 
  • Wireless Headphones – You can also pair wireless headphones to your TV to enhance your gaming experience, or if you have trouble hearing the TV on your own. 
  • Remote Controllers – You can pair voice-controlled remotes to your TV for easy browsing of your favorite channels.

When attempting to connect a device to your Bluetooth enabled smart TV, be sure to read the instruction manual for both the device and your TV to ensure they are compatible.

If you can’t connect to your TV directly with another Bluetooth enabled device, you can utilize a Bluetooth adapter to bridge that gap. Once connected to a Bluetooth adapter, your TV should function exactly as one already equipped with the technology. 

Bluetooth adapters typically connect to your TV via an RCA connector, which will plug into the audio and visual ports on your TV. 

How Can You Tell if Your Smart TV Is Bluetooth Enabled? 

The best way to tell if your TV is Bluetooth enabled is to check the settings menu of your TV.

Most Bluetooth enabled TVs will have an option for enabling Bluetooth with step by step instructions available right from your screen. 

You can also check your TV’s remote, or the box it came in with, to gain an understanding of whether or not it will be able to pair with your favorite Bluetooth devices. 

Conclusion

To review, just because you have a smart TV does not mean it’s going to be enabled with Bluetooth right out of the box.

Bluetooth technology, which allows you to remotely connect certain wireless devices via short-wave, high-frequency radio signals, is a nice feature to have and will enhance your TV experience, but is not necessary to access most of the great benefits a smart TV has to offer. 

There are a number of devices you can connect to a Bluetooth enabled smart TV, such as voice-controlled remotes, wireless speakers and soundbars, and gaming consoles and wireless headsets. 

If you want to take advantage of Bluetooth technology with your Smart TV, but don’t currently have the feature available, you can utilize a Bluetooth adapter to bridge that gap. 

Nelson Barbosa

I'm an engineer in love with smart home tech. On my website, I share useful tips and tricks to help my readers get the most of their devices and make their lives simpler by adding just a drop of technology in everyday routines!

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