LG brings Google Play Movies & TV to its Smart TV range

Google’s video store for televisions slowly expands beyond Chromecast and Android TV.

Google’s video store is getting a new home on LG's smart TVs.

Later this month, all WebOS-based LG televisions will get an app for Google Play Movies & TV, as will older LG TVs running NetCast 4.0 or 4.5. The rollout will begin in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada, and will eventually expand to 104 countries, Android Central reports.

Google Play Movies & TV offers videos for purchase or rental from all the major Hollywood studios, and anything users purchase on one device becomes available to view on other devices tied to the same Google account. Supported platforms include the web, Android, iOS (with access to past purchases only), Android TV, Chromecast, and Roku.

LG’s WebOS platform already offers other ways to buy or rent videos, including Amazon Video and Vudu. Still, having Google Play will be helpful for users who’ve already built up a video catalog in Google’s ecosystem.

The partnership is a bit more interesting from Google’s perspective. Until last year’s hookup with Roku, Google hadn’t offered its video store on any third-party TV platforms. LG is just the second partner to offer Google’s video app on its own smart TV system.

The story behind the story: Presumably, Google would prefer if television makers would just adopt Android TV instead of building out their own platforms. But so far, major brands such as Samsung, LG, and Vizio show no signs of ceding control. It makes sense, then, for Google to make its video store more widely available, giving it a better chance to succeed against Amazon Video, iTunes, Vudu, M-Go, and others. Perhaps support for Samsung and Vizio televisions will be the next step.

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Jared Newman

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