LG's Google TVs shipping now, update promised in Q3

Today Google and LG announced that the Google TV operating system on LG's Google TVs would be updated to Jelly Bean in the third quarter of 2013.

David Katzmaier

David Katzmaier

Editorial Director -- TVs and streaming

David has reviewed TVs, streaming services, streaming devices and home entertainment gear at CNET since 2002. He is an ISF certified, NIST trained calibrator and developed CNET's TV test procedure himself. Previously David wrote reviews and features for Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com. He is known to two people on Twitter as "The Cormac McCarthy of consumer electronics."

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LG is the only TV maker building TVs with Google TV built-in, and its 2013 lineup of Google TVs is bigger than ever, with seven new models spread across two series.

First announced prior to CES, the GA7900 (55-inch, 47-inch) and the GA6400 (60-inch, 55-inch, 50-inch, 47-inch and 42-inch) series are both available now, in prices currently ranging from $900 to $2,100.

Most Google TV devices, including these LG TVs, now use a version of Honeycomb 3.2, which enables users to use tablet and smartphone apps on their TV. Here's an in-depth look at how it performs in person.

At Google IO in May 2013, LG announced that its Google TVs would receive an update to Jelly Bean in the third quarter of this year. The main improvement promised by the upgrade is access to more apps originally designed to run on phones and tablets. LG also says the sets will have a "3D Game Changer" that simulates 3D effects with 2D games, and an improved remote control app for Android touch screens that caters more to gaming.

On the hardware side, both televisions feature a dual-core processor. They have QWERTY motion remote controls with an integrated mic for "natural" voice commands and voice search powered by Google. The remote design is different from the new Motion Remotes announced in late December, and instead resembles the reversible slab that shipped with the G2. Passive Cinema 3D will also be part of both models.

The top-of-the-line GA7900 features an edge-lit LED with local dimming and a 240Hz refresh rate. The GA6400 is simply edge-lit and includes a lower 120Hz refresh. LG's 2013 TVs use the same kind of backlight scanning as in 2012 to arrive at those refresh rates.

We haven't yet reviewed any of LG's 2013 Google TVs. In the meantime, here's our full review of the LG G2 Google TV from 2012.

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