CNET First Look
Yahoo widgetsYahoo widgets for TV are Internet-connected content modules that let you download weather, stocks, news, and even Flickr photos directly to your television. So how do they work?
[ Music ] >> David Katzmaier: Hi. I'm Senior Editor, David Katzmaier, and I'm here with a TV that's equipped with Yahoo Widgets. Yahoo Widgets is a new feature. It's available on Samsung, Sony, LG, and Visio TV's this year, just select models, but TV's that have it have the ability to use these widgets that are basically little information gateways that use the Internet to update. For example, a TV that I'm reviewing here shipped with a weather widget. There's a widget for finance. There's a widget for Flicker, and there's also a widget for news. So those are the four that it starts out with. There's going to be a lot more widgets coming down the pipe, but right now, it's just those four. The widgets themselves are kind of housed in the widget gallery so when there's a new widget that comes along, you can browse over to the widget gallery, turn it on, and check out what's available there, and then choose to add those widgets to the system. Just like a computer, there's a profile here. So when you first log onto the widget system, you can actually be one or two or three or four, five different family members. You can log on as yourself, or you can have other people can have different logons, and each logon has its own group of widgets, and there's even different settings saved to each logon. So these profiles are a good way to manage the system within the family. Each widget has the ability, again, to use the Internet to go out and find new information. For example, the weather widget will give you real time weather information in a variety of cities. You can program in the cities that you want, and you can also get detailed information like five-day forecast. Even things like wind chill, things like that. The finance widget is the most complex of the bunch. It has the ability to add your individual stock portfolio. It actually works with the Yahoo Finance system that can go out and, again, update those stock informations and then give you business news, and let you track your entire portfolio. Another widget that we really like is the Flicker widget. The Flicker widget is just like the photo service. You can go into that widget, sign on. You can look at all the photos that you have stored on Flicker. You can also add your groups that you like for Flicker Groups and take advantage of checking out friends, photos, and even explore the photos of complete strangers. So it really acts a lot like the Flicker website, and of course, if you blow up those pictures to fill the screen on an HDTV, it really looks good. There's also a news widget. We found that a little bit less exciting to use. It's really just basic news headlines. You can't really click through and get any more information. All in all, we did like the widget experience. The real issue, again, is that it does take awhile to load. It takes awhile to turn on the widgets at first. When you first turn on the system, it takes up to 45 seconds to get going, and then when you go into each widget, sometimes there's a loading delay especially with the more complex widgets. It does seem to take forever sometimes. On the flip side, we do think there is going to be plenty of cool functionality added to the widgets. They are free so, again, when somebody decides to add new widgets to the system, you'll be able to get that functionality for free. There's also these, the ability in the future to add advertising. Of course, now, when the system first launches, there aren't any ads. We'll soon see them I'm sure. We'll also see a bunch of new widgets, but in the meantime, that's a quick look at the system. I'm David Katzmaier, and this has been Yahoo Widgets. [ Music ]