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posted by janrinok on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:01AM   Printer-friendly
from the don't-connect-them-to-anything dept.

https://www.techdirt.com/2022/04/14/its-still-stupidly-ridiculously-difficult-to-buy-a-dumb-tv/

Historically, "smart" TVs aren't always particularly smart. They've routinely been shown to have lax security and privacy standards. They also routinely feature embedded OS systems that don't age well, aren't always well designed, don't perform particularly well over time, are slathered with ads, and are usually worse than most third-party game streaming devices or video game consoles.

Yet when if you go shopping for "dumb" televisions — as in just a high quality display with a bunch of HDMI ports and not much else, you're usually going to be out of luck. There are options, but guides on this front will usually shovel you toward computer monitors (too pricey at large sizes), or business-class displays (ditto).

[...] Of course it's challenging because TV manufacturers now make more money collecting and monetizing your personal data than they do selling the actual hardware. Last year Vizio noted it made $38.4 million in one quarter just from tracking and monetizing consumer viewing and usage data. It made $48.2 million on hardware (which also includes soundbars, and other products) in that same period.


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  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:12AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:12AM (#1237591)

    Just plug your computer of choice into one of the HDMI ports. If you still care about privacy, look for a smaht TV without a microphone.

    • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:14AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:14AM (#1237608)

      HDMI can carry network now.

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:38AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:38AM (#1237614)

        Tell your computer to behave. Or get an HDMI extender to act as a "condom".

  • (Score: 5, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:13AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:13AM (#1237592)

    and plug in a $30 USB TV Tuner into an old laptop running Kaffeine connected via HDMI if you need terrestrial broadcasts.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by RedGreen on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:13AM (27 children)

    by RedGreen (888) on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:13AM (#1237593)

    says you have to connect them to the internet for their spying functions. My supposed "smart" TV just sits there not connected in any way to the internet via the Wifi or Ethernet port and simply functions as a monitor with its three HDMI ports connected to the machines I want them connected to. A simple switching of the input source via the remote gives me the connection to the machine I need displayed on the TV at the time. Shockingly enough it all just works fine this way.

    --
    "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:27AM (13 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:27AM (#1237597)

      How confident are you that your smart TV isn't looking for unsecured networks to connect to in the background? It's pretty commonplace for spyware to try to hard code DNS servers to use or to send to IP addresses to try to get around stuff. And you have cable companies and Amazon and others who want to run an open net on your router for extending the network to the "neighborhood," so that network might also be set up in your area already. This issue isn't just for TVs, but also fridges, washers, etc. There indeed should be laws to make this stuff illegal, and certainly NOT opt-out.

      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:53AM (9 children)

        by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:53AM (#1237604)

        I've wondered the same thing. Perhaps you can give the TV a static IP address- one which won't route on a local network?

        Or maybe open it up and look for a WiFi antenna and snippy snippy. To be clear, it's likely a dielectric resonator antenna soldered onto a board, but still quite removable.

        Or you could set up a dummy WiFi router- one not connected to the 'net. Then your real router (gateway) turn off SSID broadcast, disable any guest access, and maybe if possible block all but a few allowable MAC addresses?

        My solution: keep older TVs.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:25AM (8 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:25AM (#1237631)

          1) Any TV that does wifi scanning when it can't phone home is already overriding whatever settings you gave it.
          2) Voids warranty.
          3) See 1.
          4) If you have a working older TV then you weren't in the market in the first place.

          • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:11AM (7 children)

            by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:11AM (#1237645)

            1) Might be in violation of federal laws against computer / network hacking.
            2) How long are warranties these days? And how many things actually break during that short time? And how much do you pay for warranty service? Shipping both ways, fees, more fees?
            3) ?
            4) Maybe I want a newer, larger, more features, so maybe I _am_ in the market.
            5) If someone has a non-working non-smart TV, how about fixing it?

            • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:52AM (3 children)

              by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:52AM (#1237679)

              1) Tell Google TV's that. The ones I've seen do an 'automatic configuration' on power-up that will connect to the first wifi they find that has internet access so they can phone home. It's a 'feature'.
              2) Long enough to cover the 'infant mortality' part of the bathtub curve. The catch is, you need to power the thing on to find out if it works or not.
              3) If the dummy router doesn't give it internet access then it will keep scanning, per 1).
              4) Your solution was to keep the old TV. That takes you out of the market.
              5) Depending on whats wrong with it then good luck getting parts, and good luck getting to the bad part without breaking something else.

              • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:55AM (2 children)

                by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:55AM (#1237689)

                1) Yes, for now. You may not have noticed, but generally people disregard the law until prosecuted. Also, then make Faraday cage around TV room.
                2) So power it on. Who cares? Disable antenna after some short time, days. Time is a thing, right? It's over long time that most people will want spying to stop.
                3) True, so see my 1. (I know, Faraday cage isn't actually practical; I'm just saying if you're properly determined, it can be done.)
                4) Specious argument. You didn't read: I said I'm in the market for another TV. Disputing that is borderline absurd and simply argumentative. I'm in USA. If I want to buy another TV, it's my right and choice. Maybe you're in a country which limits your purchasing?
                5) Good luck? I've done and do component-level electronic repair most of my life, and that's a pretty good # years. Again, your argument is specious- repair is a thing, and would be more so if people actually desired to keep things. Now they may wish they had done so.

                BTW, where I live there is NO open WiFi available. I won't tell you how I know, but part of it is that I live in outer suburbs, houses are not close together, and as such I'm surprised that I can "see" any neighbor's WiFi signals (1-6 depending). But I realize in some areas dozens of WiFi APs show when I look for them. Rarely open, and even those usually require some kind of website login (stores, libraries, etc.)

                • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Reziac on Monday April 18 2022, @03:11AM (1 child)

                  by Reziac (2489) on Monday April 18 2022, @03:11AM (#1237833) Homepage

                  My solution was more radical... I lost interest in TV, and haven't had one in operation in about 10 years. And they're pretty much making sure I never regain that interest. I like your thoughts about snip-snip.

                  Wifi range can be more than you expect. My old ZTE phone can see cars on the highway, about 150 feet away. I have wondered if some of 'em daisy-chain, because they stay on the list a lot longer than I'd expect for a 55mph road.

                  --
                  And there is no Alkibiades to come back and save us from ourselves.
                  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Monday April 18 2022, @03:52AM

                    by RS3 (6367) on Monday April 18 2022, @03:52AM (#1237838)

                    Yeah, I watch less and less TV. Nothing intently- it's on in the background when I'm eating and/or reading / browsing the web. Maybe a few bits here and there get my attention.

                    In fact, some YouTube vids are far more informative and/or entertaining (anything "fail", or "people are awesome", or "idiots at work"...) :)

                    Yes, I know WiFi can go far. I'm more than 200' from my closest neighbor and I used to be able to use free Xfinity WiFi from them. I have a legal login. I did use a particularly powerful USB WiFi adapter, and I had to orient it fairly carefully, but got good solid reception until ComunistCast shut it down. They're an elderly couple, I doubt they use much Internet, and I really never did- just light browsing, so it was invisible to their bandwidth. In fact, the distance made the signal weak enough that I maybe got 10 Mbit on a really good day, but usually 2-4, which is more than enough.

                    Just with phones and laptops I see at least 6 WiFi spots, and they're all more than 200' away.

                    And then you have the high-gain antennas... which a friend first made one (Yagi, fiberglass rod, copper elements), but then he bought a flat-panel array, maybe 6" square, and it blows the Yag away. Again, he has full permission and login to share from his neighbor.

                    Hmm, I kind of doubt daisy-chaining. But I don't know. Something would be working in repeater mode I guess. That or the system just stays locked once it gets lock, until the signal really drops off.

            • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Sunday April 17 2022, @08:19PM (2 children)

              by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Sunday April 17 2022, @08:19PM (#1237757) Homepage Journal

              1) Might be in violation of federal laws against computer / network hacking.

              That's hilarious. Who went to prison over Sony's XCP Trojan? And that was something that worried me when I bought my TV. I screwed up. [mcgrew.info]

              --
              mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
              • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @09:39PM

                by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @09:39PM (#1237774)

                Yeah, I don't know what to say about our (US) legal system. Is "capricious" a good description? (you're the writer, not me!)

                Thanks for that link. 40" CRT? Yikes!! I wasn't aware there was such a thing. I had a broken 36" Mitsubishi. Turned out the CRT had lost vacuum, so I never bothered to try to fix it. The 36" weighed 260 lbs. I know, it had to be weighed where I got rid of it (local recycler).

                Degausser would be very easy repair. It just needed a PTC thermistor- was a moderately common repair in those days. $2 part.

                Also, you can buy a manual / handheld degausser. There are some on ebay, amazon, etc., for $16 or so. Not sure how good they are. I have one of the older bigger loop ones. More $, not sure if they're better or not. Probably will never know nor care.

                Thanks again for the info. And generally you don't need to do a full format on FLASH media. It takes time, and a little bit unnecessary wear on the cells. A quick format is good. And you can run various tests if you're worried about the media. If it's a USB stick there are some simple free utilities. I have one called simply "Flash Drive Tester". SSD manufacturer will have utilities you can download and run, as well as built-in SMART tests and stats.

              • (Score: 5, Informative) by deimtee on Monday April 18 2022, @02:43AM

                by deimtee (3272) on Monday April 18 2022, @02:43AM (#1237827) Journal

                Have you tried one of those thumb drives with a physical write protect switch? Flick the switch and the TV shouldn't be able to screw with it. Something like :
                https://www.kanguru.com/collections/kanguru-usb-drives-with-a-physical-write-protect-switch [kanguru.com]

                --
                If you cough while drinking cheap red wine it really cleans out your sinuses.
      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by RedGreen on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:16AM

        by RedGreen (888) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:16AM (#1237624)

        "How confident are you that your smart TV isn't looking for unsecured networks to connect to in the background?"

        Good luck finding one of them, unlike in the past when everybody and their dog had unsecured networks all the routers the ISPs give out these days have secured passworded connections. Even the people that have used a third party router have secured them. The only place these days you can get a network connection is at the chain stores, the Library or in the downtown area where the community network is present. Even then you go through their login process to get the IP, oh and there is setting in there where I actually have to turn on the wifi to use it and since I do not plug the cable in the network port it will be cold day in hell when it manages to get an IP from thin air.

        --
        "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
      • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Sunday April 17 2022, @08:04PM

        by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Sunday April 17 2022, @08:04PM (#1237753) Homepage Journal

        Unsecured network? The only ones I've seen in years are places like coffee shops. Not much chance your TV would find one, even if a manufacturer had gone to the expense of programming it to look.

        But what I actually came here to say was, what electronic (or even electric) device can you buy today that DOESN'T have a computer in it? Even your car is a computer! Your microwave, your home's thermostat, your radio, your telephone...

        --
        mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 2) by jasassin on Monday April 18 2022, @09:03PM

        by jasassin (3566) <jasassin@gmail.com> on Monday April 18 2022, @09:03PM (#1238020) Homepage Journal

        How confident are you that your smart TV isn't looking for unsecured networks to connect to in the background?

        I can just see it. A Samsung smart TV running aircrack-ng to pixie dust crack my neighbors Wi-Fi so it can send some telemetry back to Samsung.

        --
        jasassin@gmail.com GPG Key ID: 0xE6462C68A9A3DB5A
    • (Score: 5, Insightful) by ikanreed on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:37AM (12 children)

      by ikanreed (3164) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:37AM (#1237602) Journal

      No law, but do be ready for TVs that outright refuse to function without an internet connection.

      • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:08AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:08AM (#1237606)

        For your convenience.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by RedGreen on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:18AM

        by RedGreen (888) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:18AM (#1237626)

        "No law, but do be ready for TVs that outright refuse to function without an internet connection."

        Then they can get ready to refund my money.

        --
        "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
      • (Score: 4, Informative) by anubi on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:08AM (9 children)

        by anubi (2828) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:08AM (#1237642) Journal

        I was in Walmart asking questions about how to set up a modern TV for monitor/OTA use, Miracast, and Chromecast with local intranet only.

        Guess what? He told me several TV already require a Google account and internet to activate them!

        --
        "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:15AM (8 children)

          by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:15AM (#1237646)

          Ugh. It's come to this: you have to "activate" a TV.

          So I suppose they can DEactivate it at any time, at their whim, and due to some thing you didn't know you agreed to by buying the TV, or even some kind of error causing their auto-activator to think you need to be deactivated.

          • (Score: 5, Interesting) by anubi on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:08AM (7 children)

            by anubi (2828) on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:08AM (#1237663) Journal

            Exactly what scared the bejeebies out of me when considering new technology. I am so used to being able to fix whatever I brought into my life.

            Stuff has become so proprietary that I can no longer do this.

            I now have to consider stuff like this to be disposable. If it breaks, gotta get another. Like a light bulb, cheap transistor radio, phone, etc.

            I hardly consider a major investment like a car, expensive TV, or major appliance as disposable! Waste of my money to buy expensive to maintain crap, and aren't our landfills overused even as I type this?

            I am driven to seek out older stuff these days. A lot of the new stuff is designed to be a problem-child from the get-go.

            --
            "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
            • (Score: 4, Interesting) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @11:09AM (6 children)

              by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @11:09AM (#1237690)

              Kindred spirits we are! All of my flat-screen TVs came from "end of driveway". My best 2 are identical 46" Samsung. Brilliant beautiful picture. Both only needed PS caps, which I stock (gee, I wonder why?). Less than 1 hour total repair time from first screw removed to last screw back in.

              I agree about proprietary stuff. Many things fail due to bad soldering, in general, and specifically BGA soldering problems. In some cases, and you can watch YouTube vids on this if you don't know but are curious, you have to dismount the chip, clean board and chip well, flux it up, replace balls, cook until medium-well done.

              A friend, who is a college art professor and is somewhat technical, fixed his very expensive Apple laptop by "cooking" the "logic board" in his oven. He found the instructions somewhere. Didn't need BGA chip dismount. I think he had to dismount a few things, squirt some liquid flux under GPU, cook in his kitchen oven, and it worked and works.

              If not able to do a component-level repair (or you give up due to eroding sanity), most TVs have only 2 or 3 circuit boards in them, and you can find many (most) on ebay and other online sources.

              My main car is 20 years old, has 255k miles, and runs almost like new.

              I'm not much of a TV watcher, a few things here or there, not into movies, etc., so I don't even watch my flat-screens. My main TV is, still, a 14" (odd I know) CRT that simply works. I can't read some of the print on some shows, esp. sports, and some subtitles because they're making them microscopic. And you know what? My life goes on perfectly well.

              Oh, and congratulations on being rid of that bejeebies infection. :)

              • (Score: 2, Interesting) by anubi on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:11PM (3 children)

                by anubi (2828) on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:11PM (#1237695) Journal

                Yup... It's just plain peace of mind to know I do not have the "Sword of Damocles" of stuff failure swinging over my head.

                If it breaks, I can fix it, shoo in a replacement, or know other people of like mindset that can fix it. I am not averse to getting a tradesman involved. I'd rather have my well made old thing than a new, shiny, piece of junk.

                ( I am looking at washing machines, dryers, ovens, ranges, refrigerators, freezers... So many crappy designs out there these days. Have they all forgot how to use gravity so water does not go into inappropriate places should a seal leak?)

                Just lost the glow plug controller on my 25 year old diesel van, got a far better part - an industrial White-Rodgers contactor back in. I had to hog out some scrap metal to make another mounting bracket for it, and it's now on manual control from a really nice 50 year old mil-spec spring return toggle switch I've had since I was a kid. Knew I would need that switch some day. It was once part of some old WW2 military console.

                Every day, I appreciate the stuff my grandpa, an Alabama farmer, taught me about designing stuff to last.

                We have a helluva lot of slipshod design out there today. I can't figure out why anyone would want it. It's just a pain in the arse to own.

                Yup, I think we both think a helluva lot alike.

                --
                "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
                • (Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:02PM (2 children)

                  by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:02PM (#1237783)

                  I'm not truly as cynical as this will sound, but, as an engineer, one of the main things companies want to see on my resume: how I "cost reduced" something. Cheapened. And that's not just one time, it's a constant evolution of everything electronic / mechanical. An additional component, and sorry, I'm generalizing, it's not absolute, but too often companies "lay off" older engineers in favor of the younger more malleable ones. Older ones might be more prone to make more solid designs, like the "good old days". Also, some countries are particularly good at copying something, and "cost reducing" (cheapening) it all the while.

                  I keep wondering if there's a market for stuff that's really well made. Thinking of if someone started a retailer / reseller and only sold good stuff. I know some people who go out of their way to buy really good tools. I also know people who buy the very cheap stuff and don't care if it breaks- they buy more cheap ones. Sigh. Admittedly there's generally a huge price disparity and the cheap ones are tempting.

                  I have an infuriating washing machine. Found at end of neighbor's driveway. Needed some work. It's maybe 10 years old. It's an HE top loader. It's totally uncontrollable. If you try to cheat it, you'll generally anger it and it will dump all your warm soapy water down the drain. You can't cancel the dump, nor power it off. The display will go all dark as it pumps $ in energy and detergent down the drain. I unplugged it, grabbed some 5 gal. buckets, and recovered most of it. Sometimes it overfills, sometimes under. It decides on temperature, ignoring the Hot, Med, Cold you've chosen. If you try to cheat on the temp, it will get angry and display a cryptic error code and just sit there. Sometimes you can figure out what magic combination of buttons to push and get it back running again.

                  Extremely cheaply made. And, it has pockets in the stupid tub that hold water that gets VERY stinky after a few days. So you have to run some kind of special cleaner in a cleaning cycle. Not so efficient afterall.

                  Undersized bearings that are famous for going bad. Mine still work, but scream. I'll measure the dB someday, but you don't want to be in the room with it during final high speed spin. I might replace them someday. Time & effort better spent on a better machine, even if it needs work.

                  Awesome upgrade repair on your van- exactly my style.

                  Farmers are usually very resourceful, smart, and great at fixing things. I often wish I was one. My mom's father was, so it's in my blood, but he died when I was quite young so I didn't get to work with and learn from him.

                  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by anubi on Monday April 18 2022, @06:42AM (1 child)

                    by anubi (2828) on Monday April 18 2022, @06:42AM (#1237860) Journal

                    Oh gawd, the nausea I experienced at Sears upon examining the newer washing machines. I still have my old Kenmore Direct Drive model 70. Yup, like you, an end of the driveway find intended for the scrap metal hauler 20 years ago. Still running fine! All that was wrong with it was the PO kept raising the lid when the thing was trying to drain and it overheated and glazed the clutch. Disassembly and a quick rub on the concrete floor knocked the glaze off, and so far I've got another 20 years out of it.

                    These new ones...first thing I would do is build an Arduino for it

                    I am updating an old oven/cooktop from bimetallic control to Arduino control. Thing won't hold precise temperature. It will now. Type K thermocouple. And all the knobs will do exactly what I want them to do. Including the new safety interlock that keeps main power off until I have entered a certain sequence on the control panel using temperature set function like a combination lock. Hold a button down to fire up the 12 volt system, twirl the temp knob back and forth to the correct numbers, then the big White-Rodgers will pull in, then the Triac SSR's, controlled from the Arduino, will take over. Everything's on timer. Quadrature encoded controls, and, of course, the old latching start-stop hard relay latch circuit with the White-Rodgers.

                    It will use the same White-Rodgers contactor as I used for my van. Just to make damned sure those heating elements don't unexpectedly engage upon child play, bump, cat, or power line spike. I mean when this is powered down, only thing still running is the Arduino clock. If I want to see the time, I can power up the Arduino by pressing the start switch, but if no combination is entered, the Arduino won't power the White-Rodgers coil, and the whole shebang turns right back off when the button is released. I want this to have enough smarts to keep me out of trouble by timing out to complete shutdown when done. Or if setting goes wrong, tell me on it's LCD what the problem is.

                    I have so much fun building stuff like this that I rarely have time to watch TV.

                    --
                    "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
                    • (Score: 1) by anubi on Tuesday April 19 2022, @05:23AM

                      by anubi (2828) on Tuesday April 19 2022, @05:23AM (#1238100) Journal

                      I was re-reading this thread. It's stale by now, but I did fail to react to a point RS3 brought up ... And that is the new corporate race to mediocrity by corner cutting, laying off experienced engineers, opting to hire the cheapest incoming technical expertise without benefit of decades of experience.

                      I watched this play out in two companies in Southern California. The new breed of MBA got in, the engineers were organized to be subordinate to them. Engineers now had no recourse when ordered to implement poorly considered designs. Some engineers who had no alternative went along with the MBA and survived a bit longer. Some of us were too proud of what we could do, leaving the MBA no alternative but to lay us off. A lot of the older ones took retirement, now their experiences were no longer available to the new hires.

                      It seemed that the MBA were trained that we were nothing more than interchangeable worker bees. Support for thousands of customers who have bought our products for decades was now being provided by people who barely knew how to pronounce the name of the thing, and maybe even knew what it did. But how to fix it? How to modify it?

                      Oh, the MBA specialized in fresh, crisp haircuts, pressed suits, lavish meetings, and a good firm hand shake. But we were about as competent as those nice looking car repair businesses in the elite areas of town, where you bring a car to them, needing as little as a new set of spark plugs, only to have their well dressed Mechanic tell you he's sorry, but your car is over ten years old and you need to retire it and buy a new one.

                      Meanwhile, go to the next town over where the working people live, and fixing it is no problem.

                      It's been my observation that the MBA usually have no concept as to how stuff works, and no experience in developing abstractive skills... Stuff like your customer has a problem. They have come here for years to have their concerns addressed. Using the Skills of the Mastery of Business Administration, the Cash Flow has been noted and the company bought out. Cost centers are identified, and profit centers kept, cost centers - such as dedication to making quality product - can be marginalized/eliminated by making those dedicated to serve the customer reorganized to be subordinate losers to the Management MBA.

                      The frustrated customers now have to go somewhere else. All we can do is show up in crisp haircuts, shined shoes, expensive suits, exquisite meeting experiences, but no one knows how to change a spark plug.

                      The ability to abstract why we have customers never seemed to be taught in a business curriculum. It was all about making money.

                      I would almost swear they use the CIA Simple Sabotage Field Manual as a guidebook on how to manage a workplace.

                      --
                      "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
              • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:15PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:15PM (#1237743)

                squirt some liquid flux under GPU, cook in his kitchen oven, and it worked and works.

                That flux doesn't go well with the liver though so maybe if you have a spare oven for these things instead.

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @04:58PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @04:58PM (#1237951)

                I think open source hardware is the answer to this. I have made do with FOSS and jailbreaking devices, but now I'm transferring everything to open source hardware too. If companies keep up the shenanigans we need to spend our money differently.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:14AM (6 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:14AM (#1237594)

    Don't connect your tv, "smart" or not, to the internet. Problem solved.

    Why even bother to post this bullshit? Is this a case of SN "editors" being dumbass or SN readers? You decide.

    • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:19AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:19AM (#1237595)

      Don't forget story commentators. You forgot to throw yourself into the mix.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:28AM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:28AM (#1237634)

      These TV's do their own network scanning. There is no way to turn it off. It only takes one neighbour with an open network and they're online.

      • (Score: 2) by MIRV888 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:35AM (2 children)

        by MIRV888 (11376) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:35AM (#1237654)

        Just hand it an an unrouteble address. Specify your dhcp server by mac address.
        It pulls an address... that doesn't work.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:58AM (1 child)

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:58AM (#1237680)

          The auto-scanning occurs during boot, before you have a chance to configure it. I haven't tried (not my TV or network), but giving it a non-routable IP may even trigger an auto-scan to 'fix' your connection for you.

          • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:07PM

            by tangomargarine (667) on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:07PM (#1237708)

            The auto-scanning occurs during boot, before you have a chance to configure it.

            So we have to turn on our TVs in a Faraday cage to avoid this shit? Wow, that's completely fucked.

            --
            "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
    • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @05:18PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @05:18PM (#1237954)

      says the dumb whore who funds the enemy and rationalizes it with workarounds.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:27AM (4 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:27AM (#1237598)

    Our living room TV is space constrained to a 42" screen - that's not too unreasonably priced for a computer monitor like the Viewsonic we replaced our 2008 vintage 42" TV with when it died of lightning exposure in 2019. O.K. - the Viewsonic was more than similar quality "smart" TVs at the time, but it was less than the 2008 TV (not even considering inflation) and when you consider that "smart" TVs are probably subsidized by the apps they default install - like a Kindle Fire tablet - you're getting what you're not paying for: advertising built into your screen.

    We have another room with a 55" monitor, I see current prices run around $1400 - and that's a chunk of change, but again: what's your perspective? Are you comparing with 55" non-advertising sponsored screens of the past which would easily have cost $2000 and up? Or, are you comparing it with a system built to push subscription based content into your home which will easily drain a few hundred dollars a year from your family - if not in actual spending, then in attention-time stolen from you with advertising?

    --
    🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by krishnoid on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:32AM (3 children)

      by krishnoid (1156) on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:32AM (#1237599)

      Now that you mention the Fire tablet, are these Smart TVs running a version of Android, and if so ... could they be rooted and converted to stock (or other) Android? If that's the case, you could just connect them to Wi-Fi only when you prefer, without having to take a soldering iron to the circuit board.

      • (Score: 3, Informative) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:42AM (2 children)

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @02:42AM (#1237603)

        I dinked around with a Fire tablet for an hour or so once with the thought to "root" it, and came to the conclusion that my time is more valuable to me doing other things than learning how to circumvent their revenue generation games.

        I'm sure, with sufficient effort and probably not much or any physical modification to the products, you could probably software-mod your way out of all the smart-TV features - but that's going to require hours of reverse-engineering and/or research which, ultimately, could be spent enjoying things in life other than "beating the system." Now, if your whole reason for living is to "stick it to the man" then smart TVs are one outlet for that energy, but for a few hundred bucks once every 5-10 years, you can also just buy a dumb monitor if that's what you want and be completely free of smart TV frustrations.

        As others have pointed out: it's not hard to starve them of internet connectivity, and that's another approach. I prefer to just have a simple monitor that's not going to complain to me periodically that it "needs" to phone home.

        --
        🌻🌻 [google.com]
        • (Score: 4, Informative) by krishnoid on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:06AM (1 child)

          by krishnoid (1156) on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:06AM (#1237605)

          Whoops, I was just thinking of seeing if someone on xda-developers had found which TVs can be rooted/reloaded this way. I also suppose buying a used business-class display from a company that's scrapping/upgrading/going into bankruptcy is also an possibility.

          • (Score: 4, Informative) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:24AM

            by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:24AM (#1237627)

            Yeah, if the reverse engineering has been done, and written up into a reasonable how-to that can be researched and implemented within a couple of hours, sure.... I've just gone down too many of those rabbit holes that end up taking 8-10 hours before it's working satisfactorily - with a fair amount of risk that it never will, or that it will require periodic maintenance.

            --
            🌻🌻 [google.com]
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by SomeGuy on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:45AM (19 children)

    by SomeGuy (5632) on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:45AM (#1237617)

    TV manufacturers now make more money collecting and monetizing your personal data

    Nobody sees this as wrong?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:54AM (9 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @03:54AM (#1237619)

      $150 4K TV, baby!

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:15AM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:15AM (#1237623)

        32" curved 4k monitor for $400 here. No smarts whatsoever. Just displays the shit. Needed some tweaks Tom's Hardware suggested (factory defaults were completely tarded), and I love it.

        If I want a bigger screen, I have a VR headset for that.

        • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:19AM (1 child)

          by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:19AM (#1237648)

          32" curved sounds like a win. What brand / model?

          If I want a bigger screen, I have a VR headset for that.

          Great idea, and exactly what I was about to post.

          • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:04AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:04AM (#1237661)

            Samsung UR59C. Tweaks are here [tomshardware.com].

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by MIRV888 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:22AM (5 children)

        by MIRV888 (11376) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:22AM (#1237649)

        I always figured they were selling the TV's at a loss to get the data.
        I'm in the 'TV never gets connected to the internet' group.
        I have a media server I watch everything thru HDMI.
        It feels very Orwellian to be monitored in your home. (I realize smart phones are already doing it.)
        Monitored not by the government, but corporations. That seems like a bad thing to me.
        The 4th amendment is #4 in for a reason.

        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by srobert on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:44PM (3 children)

          by srobert (4803) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:44PM (#1237719)

          "The 4th amendment is #4 in for a reason."

          But the 4th only stops the government from snooping on you without a warrant. Nothing stops Google, Amazon, etc. from doing so, especially since you clicked on "I agree to the TOS". Didn't you read the Terms of Service? Why not? It's only 500 pages of lawyerly gibberish.
          Orwell was only partially right. He was right that developing technologies would be used to spy on citizens. But he predicted the government would be doing all of the spying. Actually government is the only entity that can reign in the totalitarian reach of corporate power. But that can only happen if "We the People" consent to the government having the authority to do it. And "We the People" have been so deeply gaslighted by corporate propaganda that that's unlikely to happen anytime soon.

          Now, go call your Congressman and tell him not to interfere with our unlimited power to serve your interest or else.
          Meanwhile, when you agree to the Terms of Service, your abuse is entirely consensual.

          • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:27PM

            by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:27PM (#1237726)

            I would like to lead a campaign to make "TOS" officially, legally, worthless in all jurisdictions - and broadly advertise that result.

            --
            🌻🌻 [google.com]
          • (Score: 2) by RS3 on Monday April 18 2022, @03:09AM

            by RS3 (6367) on Monday April 18 2022, @03:09AM (#1237832)

            Being the US has become a corporatocracy, seems like Google, Amazon, Apple, MS, Meta, etc., pretty much are the government.

          • (Score: 2) by MIRV888 on Monday April 18 2022, @09:24PM

            by MIRV888 (11376) on Monday April 18 2022, @09:24PM (#1238027)

            Absolutely. We hand over freely what the government would need a warrant to take.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:03PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:03PM (#1237728)

          Because they had already added 3 by the time it occurred to anyone they needed it?

    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:26AM (3 children)

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:26AM (#1237632)

      Same mechanism brought us AM/FM radio, broadcast programming, etc. I doubt that the receivers were much subsidized in the past, but the only content they could receive was certainly advertising funded so the net effect is the same.

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by dalek on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:38AM (2 children)

        by dalek (15489) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:38AM (#1237657)

        Targeted advertising is a good thing. Please hear me out before modding me down. It's common sense to know your audience. You won't see the same ads during an NFL game as you will watching an episode of the Bachelor. It's common sense that these generally appeal to different demographics, therefore the ads shown are different. Targeted advertising has been done for decades and there's nothing wrong with it. Content producers generally researched this information by hiring companies like ACNielsen to pay people on an opt-in basis and voluntarily share this information. I have zero problem with this because it's on an opt-in basis and people control what information they share. The advertising you refer to was placed by the content distributor or the content producer, and you weren't tracked unless you opted in and voluntarily shared information. That's how advertising works on those platforms. The content distributors and producers have to pay their bills, and are providing you an ongoing service. It's reasonable that they would need advertising because you're not paying them directly, at least not in the US, and they have recurring costs to continue providing the service.

        In the case of a dumb TV, the manufacturer generally isn't going to need to provide software updates. They have no recurring costs. Even if you're getting software updates, those aren't provided perpetually. They're usually provided for a limited period of time, and the manufacturer can budget those costs and build them into the purchase price. They don't need a second revenue stream from advertising as long as they charge enough up front to cover any costs from providing software updates later on. Advertising is hyper-targeted, directed at individuals instead of demographics. People are often tracked without being aware of what they're opting in for when buying the device. EULAs aren't exactly known for being easy for people to read and understand.

        Smart TVs are totally not the same thing as the advertising for commercial AM/FM radio and over-the-air TV. Unless the service is paid for by donations and tax dollars, you're not directly paying for commercial AM/FM radio and over-the-air TV stations. They have recurring bills to pay, and advertising pays those bills. Absolutely none of that is true for smart TV manufacturers.

        --
        THIS ACCOUNT IS PERMANENTLY CLOSED
        • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:47AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:47AM (#1237678)

          Targeted advertising is a good thing. Please hear me out before modding me down. It's common sense to know your audience. You won't see the same ads during an NFL game as you will watching an episode of the Bachelor. It's common sense that these generally appeal to different demographics, therefore the ads shown are different. Targeted advertising has been done for decades and there's nothing wrong with it.

          What you describe is contextual targeting, based on content, not on the person watching the content. There's nothing wrong with that. Tracking and profiling people, like tv manufacturers apparently do, is problematic.

          Contextual targeting does work. In the Netherlands public broadcaster NPO on their websites switched from tracking to contextual targeting, and they saw their ad revenue increase [theregister.com].

        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Sunday April 17 2022, @01:50PM

          by JoeMerchant (3937) on Sunday April 17 2022, @01:50PM (#1237700)

          You forgot the best part of OTA updates for "smart TVs": obsolescence at the click of a mouse button. CEO needs to boost sales numbers in the coming quarter: push an update which nudges owners to buy a new TV - either by making the old one glitchy, pushing sales promos (obvious and covert) into the software, etc. Best for the people in control, that is, and that's never really been the "consumer." Consumers have a choice to consume or not, but that's nothing like having the choice of producing or not, how to produce your product, how to sell it, etc. Vape manufacturers had the option to produce a product without nicotine, not marketed to adolescents whose brains are still forming nicotine receptor pathways, etc. They had that option, but they took the other one - not because they didn't know what they were doing, but because they were willing to accept the backlash down the road to make a quicker buck before the backlash hit. Big tobacco did a quick hit-and-run on the processed food industry - if you follow the money I would expect that a lot of it pivoted to healthcare after their work was done in the grocery store aisles.

          All of this is "opt in" nobody's "making" teenagers buy nicotine vape cartridges that happen to be twice as addictive as cigarettes, nobody is making people buy processed foods that have pivoted from causing heart disease to causing diabetes (heart disease kills the customer too quickly, diabetes is chronic suffering with a much longer payback period and overall healthcare bill.) Entertainment delivery devices are small potatoes by comparison.

          --
          🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by RedGreen on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:27AM (2 children)

      by RedGreen (888) on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:27AM (#1237633)

      "Nobody sees this as wrong? "

      Of course some people do, but most are sheep that just have to have the next new shinny no matter the costs to them or their privacy. If enough people spoke with the wallet then the parasite corporations would change their methods of doing business, but then we are back to the sheeple and their need for the next new shinny toy that they just have to have because their anti-social media influencer told them so..

      --
      "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
      • (Score: 3, Informative) by RS3 on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:23AM (1 child)

        by RS3 (6367) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:23AM (#1237650)

        Nobody sees this as wrong?

        I'm afraid your sheeple analysis is spot-on. The people who really need to see it as wrong are called Senators and Representatives of the corporatocracy. [wikipedia.org]

        • (Score: 3, Insightful) by RedGreen on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:51AM

          by RedGreen (888) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:51AM (#1237659)

          "The people who really need to see it as wrong are called Senators and Representatives of the corporatocracy."

          Never going to happen the bribe money or campaign contributions as they like too call them are to strong an incentive to keep the parasite corporation in control of it all. The best that can be done is to keep yourself safe and out of their grasp. I have been online for going on forty years and I can google my name without finding a trace. I had to look up when a 2400 baud modem was released I think that is the slowest speed I ever connected at. Unfortunately most could care less about any of that and in fact willingly give away their information for them scum to use and abuse, then whine like little bitches when it catches up with them. Oh they should do this or that to keep them getting it, how about the never giving it away to start with...

          --
          "I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:31AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @04:31AM (#1237635)

      To the executive class it is a wonderful innovation. Like most things the executive class likes, it needs to be outlawed with harsh penalties for violators.

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @05:51AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @05:51AM (#1237855)

      The EU certainly thinks this is wrong, the GDPR doesn't allow this without people freely giving explicit permission for this, clearly separated from other matters (not hidden in general conditions), with a clear explanation in plain language of what is going to happen with the data. People have the right to see the data, to correct errors in it, and to revoke the permission previously given at any time. A tv manufacturer collecting all kinds of data without the buyer being aware of that is clearly illegal in the EU.

      Enforcement is a problem, and many corporations from outside (and no doubt several from inside) the EU act as if their profit motive counts as a legitimate interest that allows them to do anything they want, ignoring that the supervisory authorities of EU countries time after time make it perfectly clear that legitimate interest is a much stricter criterion than that. But the legislation is there and enforcement seems to be slowly getting stronger.

  • (Score: 2, Disagree) by maxwell demon on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:01AM (2 children)

    by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:01AM (#1237641) Journal

    Actually, for me it was easy: Go into the shop, ask for a TV with my specifications, let the shop owner make a suggestion, verify that it does indeed do what I want and the price is OK, buy it.

    --
    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
    • (Score: 1) by anubi on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:36AM (1 child)

      by anubi (2828) on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:36AM (#1237655) Journal

      And get the shop owner to set it up, while you watch, so all you have to do is get it home and plug it in.

      I will also bring in my intranet wireless router so he can set up the TV to search that out, log onto it, then I will Chromecast my phone through it, just to make sure the whole shebang will work completely sans internet. And make sure he will take it back should it have a time bomb in it.

      --
      "Prove all things; hold fast that which is good." [KJV: I Thessalonians 5:21]
      • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:17PM

        by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:17PM (#1237744) Journal

        And get the shop owner to set it up, while you watch, so all you have to do is get it home and plug it in.

        If you have to set it up (other than the automated search for channels, which is trivial to do yourself, and possibly changing the channel settings to your liking), it probably wasn't a dumb TV.

        I will also bring in my intranet wireless router so he can set up the TV to search that out, log onto it, then I will Chromecast my phone through it, just to make sure the whole shebang will work completely sans internet. And make sure he will take it back should it have a time bomb in it.

        Well, my TV doesn't connect to wireless, nor wired. As I wrote, it's a dumb TV. All I can plug in is the antenna cable and some HDMI sources (and it also has a SCART input for old devices). Oh, and the power cord, of course. And the only thing it receives without an external antenna is the remote control signal.

        --
        The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by jurov on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:16AM (1 child)

    by jurov (6250) on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:16AM (#1237674)

    Why no one talks about making some dumb TVs? Or about hacking the smart functions out? There's nobody left that can do either?

    • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:23PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:23PM (#1237698)

      They do make them - they're just sold as computer monitors. But they're more expensive than "smart" TVs because computer monitors are not (yet) subsidised through invasive data collection. Most people are ignorant to the true cost of owning such a device, and just buy whatever has a lower sticker price.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @11:21AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @11:21AM (#1237692)

    Anyone still buying TVs so they can be bombarded by degenerate advertising and TV "programming" deserves everything that happens to them.

    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:55PM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @12:55PM (#1237699)

      Your post was missing its "Sent from my iPhone", extremely hypocritical Internet user.

      The day is now ine where people like me are nostalgic for "only" the problems mentioned in The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy song. It needs a sequel.

      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:26PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @05:26PM (#1237725)

        And you'd be wrong. I do not use a "smart" phone for browinsg the internet. PFSense + pfblockerng at the firewall and ublock-origin in the browser is fairly sufficient to avoid seeing all advertisement.

        Try harder next time, jew.

        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:35PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @10:35PM (#1237790)

          Oh look a pedophile! #MI5

    • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:23PM

      by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday April 17 2022, @07:23PM (#1237745) Journal

      I very rarely see TV ads because I usually only watch stations either completely without ads, or where ads are restricted to certain times of the day which I can easily avoid. I may see a few ads before the main news since I don't always exactly get that point when the news start (and there are ads directly before).

      And yes, 99% of the program is crap. I just concentrate on the remaining 1%.

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:28PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 17 2022, @06:28PM (#1237731)

    I too object to having a "Smart" TV which spies on me and shovels forced ads on my screen, on a display that is my property. This isn't the first article I've read concerning this.
            It seems to me that there is a market to take the F-The-Customer out of these "Smart" TVs. Two approaches come to find. The first would be to do it via software with a firmware modification. The second would be to create a generic, replacement controller board, which can interface directly with the display itself. Connect the replacement controller board, and toss the manufacturer made one in the recycle bin. Make the replacement board capable of storing multiple configurations for various models of TVs. Sell it with the appropriate cables. I'm inspired by sellers on eBay I've seen selling controller boards for old laptop screens that turn them into external monitors. Why not do something similar with these darn "Smart" TVs? Start with the models that have the best price / capability ratio and start working one's way down from there. If necessary, rent the tool set needed to do the replacement as well.
            While it would probably take me two years of full time study to build my own prototype, I'm guessing that some of you guys here on Soylent could get this going in months. If anyone is inspired by my idea, please use my idea, and go for it. Perhaps, I'll be one of your customers ...
     

  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @09:19PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 18 2022, @09:19PM (#1238025)

    How hard is it to buy a Sceptre TV? Hint: Not hard.

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by kai_h on Monday April 18 2022, @09:56PM

    by kai_h (1524) on Monday April 18 2022, @09:56PM (#1238031)

    Look for an option to put a smart tv into Hotel Mode.
    You quite often need to access the hidden service menu to enter this mode, but then it disables all the smarts on the TV and lets you simply use it as a display.
    Alternatively, disable Wifi (or don't configure it), don't connect it to Ethernet and use a HDMI connected streaming box (e.g. Apple TV, a PC etc).

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