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Internet on TV

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How to get Internet On TV

There are many ways to get internet content on your TV.

The following shows some ways to get internet on your TV

1) Newer Smart TV - Wireless (Wi-Fi) and wired (Ethernet LAN) internet connectivity built-in to TV

2) Older tube TV - external wireless or wired device is used to connect

3) Mobile phone - wireless link to compatible TV

4) Computer - wired display from computer to TV

5) Secondary Devices - Any device that can access the internet and connect to TV such as Blu-ray players and streaming devices

For home use, you will require an internet service provider with a modem and router installed in your home. The router should have wireless capability. Be sure you have your network name (SSID) and your password. The default network names and the default passwords should be on a label on the side of the router/modem.

Router wireless
Use one of the four LAN ports to connect Ethernet cable to device
The blue WAN port connects to Modem with Ethernet cable

Smart TV - How to Connect to Internet

Beginning in 2008, the Smart TV began the ever evolving technology advancement with more and more capability every year. In 2010 TVs were not nearly as "smart" as today's TVs. In those days the average TV may not even have a LAN port or certainly not Wi-Fi capability. However, as the TV technology advanced, Wi-Fi became available and software became more capable to offer more features.

What is a Smart TV?

A Smart TV is a television with a built-in computer. The computer portion uses the TV display as does the portion that tunes in broadcast TV signals as in a traditional TV. There is a processor chip and memory chips like a traditional personal computer only each TV manufacturer uses their own proprietary software to execute instructions in the processor chip, making each Smart TV different in what it can offer to you. Therefore Smart TVs are not all created equal. Internet content providers each sign agreements with the various TV makers so that their content is available or not depending on the agreement for a period of time.

Why a Smart TV may not be the best choice for streaming apps

You did the research and you bought your smart TV only to find out your TV cannot access that one content provider you like so much. You tried to find out why and the answer was "incompatible with your TV Operating System" or "Our App is always advancing and while we would like to offer it on your TV, we are not there yet". So what do you do?

You can
1) Go out and buy a different TV with the App you want or
2) buy a much less expensive streaming device which has your App and more

You cannot keep buying expensive TVs as Apps change. It is much wiser to just buy an inexpensive streaming device and connect it to your smart TV. This way, as things change, and they will, you can just buy the new device and keep your existing TV.

Setting up your Smart TV for internet access

2023-2024 TVs - almost all will offer built-in internet connectivity (Wi-Fi and Ethernet). Makers include Samsung, LG, Sony, TCL, Vizio, Hisense and more.

Using the remote control for the TV
Power ON TV and access your smart TV's on-screen menu. Use the directional pad on your TV's remote to navigate, press the Menu or HOME button. This may be called Settings.

Move to NETWORK settings. On Samsung TVs,
navigate to Settings → General → Network

Open Network Settings

To setup a new connection with your home network, choose wireless for Wi-Fi or choose wired for an Ethernet cable hookup.

Smart TV Wireless (Wi-Fi) setup

For a wireless setup choose WIRELESS and press OK

You should see your home network name listed. Select it and next enter your wireless password. This password is not the same password you use to login to your router. It is the password for the Wi-Fi network. Use remote to select letters/numbers on-screen using keypad. Your password may be case-sensitive.

Once entered and confirmed, your TV should be connected to internet.

Now you can use the pre-installed APPS on the Smart TV or add new ones to enjoy internet content.

If you cannot connect, you should get a screen informing you of an error. Possibly the password is incorrect or your wireless router signal is weak or the modem/router is not configured properly.


Choose WIRED and press OK

TV Rear Panel - LAN port

For a wired connection, find the port on the back of your TV labeled LAN or Ethernet. Connect one end of an Ethernet cable into this port and the other end into one of the router LAN port. Choose WIRED on the Network setup screen. Now you are connected to internet.

Smart TV Wired Ethernet to Internet

Ethernet cable

Ethernet Cables

Category 5 (CAT5), CAT5e, and CAT6 are the most common Ethernet cables. CAT5 cables support 100 Mbps while CAT5a maxes out at 1,000 Mbps. CAT6 introduced shielding to reduce interference while CAT6a increased the maximum speed to 10,000 Mbps.

CAT7 cables are the newer generation, reaching up to 100,000 Mbps at a range of 49 feet. The latest generation, CAT8, can achieve 40,000 Mbps at a longer span of 131 feet.

Cables usually have their information printed on the sheath, including the manufacturer, bandwidth, certifications. UTP means Unshielded Twisted Pair, 24AWG would be the wire size based on the American Wire Gauge. Look for the words “CAT5” or “CAT6” to find out what kind of cable it is.

What is RJ45 and how does it work?

A registered jack (RJ) is a standardized physical network interface for connecting telecommunications equipment. The most common twisted-pair connector is an 8-position, 8-contact (8P8C) modular plug and jack commonly referred to as an RJ45 connector.

Uses of RJ45 :
An 8-pin/8-position plug or jack is commonly used to connect computers or smart TVs to Ethernet-based local area networks (LAN). Two wiring schemes–T568A and T568B–are used to terminate the twisted-pair cable onto the connector interface.

Trouble connecting? Try reset TV

Restart the Smart TV.
If your TV won't connect to Wi-Fi, try to restart it.

Turn the TV off with the remote or power button.
Unplug the TV from the wall outlet.
Wait at least 30 seconds.
Plug the TV back in and turn it on again.

Try unplug modem/router, wait 30 secs. and plug in again. Wait for router to initialize and try connecting.

Call internet service provider for help if you cannot connect to internet.

Should I use wireless or wired - Wi-Fi or Ethernet

An Ethernet connection is generally faster than a Wi-Fi connection and provides greater reliability and security. Wired Ethernet is almost always faster than wireless Wi-Fi. The fastest Ethernet speeds today top out at 10Gbps or higher, while the fastest WiFi speeds theoretically max out at 6.9Gbps, though actual speeds are much slower. The only reason to use wireless would be for flexibility of location without running cables. A WiFi connection is more susceptible to interference from electrical devices or physical objects that can block the signal. An Ethernet connection is more reliable, as it is insulated from interference and crosstalk and unaffected by the presence of physical objects. WiFi is more convenient than an Ethernet connection. With WiFi, users can move freely, untethered to a desk or workstation by an Ethernet cable. Laptops for example could be used almost anywhere and moved around at your pleasure.

Older tube TV

The old TVs are not left out. They can still be used. You just need a device such as a FireTV stick, ROKU TV stick or Google Chromecast device which has built-in Wi-Fi.

Amazon Fire TV stick - HDMI and Wi-Fi

Turn your old TV into a smart TV

The wireless router sends to the TV stick which has a HDMI output. Connect the HDMI output to a HDMI to RCA adapter. Then connect 3 RCA cables (yellow, white, red) from the adapter to a TV with RCA inputs. Switch the TV input source to the AV RCA port and view internet content.

For even older TVs with only an RF antenna input, use a RF modulator to connect the 3 RCA cables to RF modulator RCA inputs and connect RG-6 coaxial cable from RF modulator out to the TV RF antenna input. Switch the TV to channel 3 or 4 and view internet content.

For even older TVs from the 1970s for example with only a RF antenna input, use an RF Modulator to connect.

Old analog TV can view internet content using Amazon Fire TV stick, hdmi adapter.

Computer - LAPTOP/PC

Connect to internet and displayed on TV.

PROS: Unlimited web access. The TV is just used as a big screen monitor.

Diagram - Internet on TV

SMART TV - Internet ready with apps.

No computer required but web access limited to TV's installed software apps (substantial but still limited). Some differences from computer browsing may occur (examples: HTML 5 and Flash video may not be supported by the TV, some text may not display as intended)

Note: not all apps are available on every TV manufacturer.
Additional purchases may be required, examples: storage such as USB drive for apps or remotes with keyboard for surfing web.

Smart TV Manufacturers include :

Samsung, Sony, LG, Vizio, TCL, Hisense, Toshiba and Sharp. Each markets under a different name.

Samsung - SMART TV + Apps, TIZEN OS

LG - Netcast, WEB OS

Sony - Bravia Internet Entertainment, SONY Apps

Panasonic - Viera Cast

Vizio - Vizio internet apps

Toshiba - NET TV

Sharp - AQUOS Net

A few apps are offered across the board by most TV makers like Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Pandora.


Diagram - Smart TV with built-in Wi-Fi and internet apps

MEDIA PLAYERS. ROKU, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV stick, Western Digital WDTV and other internet content add-ons (or IPTV) allow any TV* to access many internet sites such as Netflix, YouTube, Pandora, Amazon VOD and more. 

*Some internet media boxes only have HDMI outputs while others have a full compliment of outputs which allow hookup to older TVs.

ROKU and Western Digital internet media players have wi-fi and HDMI as the above connection diagram shows. The players have a remote to control your selections from internet sites.

ROKU: Connect to your HDTV with HDMI or connect to your older TV with composite video cables. ROKU boxes have wi-fi (b,g,n) to transfer data to/from a wireless router. Cost is $50 to $100 retail depending on model. 

º Internet Media Players Compared

Television is going online. 

More and more, TV and internet are merging. Your cable or satellite TV provider has been the source of TV content but the internet is opening up a wide range of information and entertainment not seen before. Some TVs are now internet capable with wireless built-in.

Older TVs are not left out, as attached box internet "players" such as Apple TV, ROKU, Boxee, Western Digital and others are available for movies and music. The ROKU box and Western Digital WDTV Live Hub allow older TVs to connect using composite video and audio hookups. Each manufacturer offers a unique bundle of free or paid services, including streaming video and music, social networking apps, online photo galleries, news and financial updates, weather info, sports scores, and a variety of other smartphone-like applications.

How to connect computer or TV to internet :

For internet access you need a broadband internet setup. Laptops or internet ready TV all need access using a broadband connection from your provider. This involves a router (wireless or wired) and modem (cable or DSL) in your home. Laptops have wireless capability for internet access. The newest HDTVs also have built-in wi-fi. Your wireless router (about $50) and modem (from your provider) allow internet access.

Some of the cost to access internet content is one-time while others are on-going.

Internet broadband service - Monthly cost typically $40 to $70 paid to your provider.
HDTV (internet ready) cost - $200 to $1,000
Router (wireless) - $50
Subscription costs: example Netflix $10 per month
Laptop or PC: $300

Computer to HDTV direct cable connection - HDTV as a monitor

One way to get the Internet on your HDTV is to set the HDTV up as a computer monitor through a direct cable connection. It's important to make sure your computer and HDTV have the right outputs and inputs to make this setup work. The most common--and best quality-- inputs on HDTVs are HDMI and component video cables. Unfortunately, outputs for these are quite rare on personal computers. Virtually all computers have a VGA output--it's the blue color-coded cable that's connected your PC to its monitor for years. It's perfectly capable of supporting high-definition video, and most HDTVs feature VGA inputs.  See laptop to tv setup for more information.

Neither VGA nor DVI carry audio. A separate phone-to-phone cable, which connects your computer's audio line-out and your TV's audio input, will be necessary. Once the cable issues are all sorted out, you must set your computer's screen resolution to match the native resolution of your HDTV (either 1920 by 1080 pixels for 1080p sets, or 1280 by 720 pixels for 720p sets). If your computer can't attain such resolutions, it's possible to work around the limitation with special software, but that's venturing into dangerous territory. Proper resolution settings ensure your computer's desktop will fill the screen properly. With that done, you can browse the Web for videos just as you would normally. If this seems a little too complicated, there are other solutions available.

TV / Internet Bridge - add-on accessory

Another way to make your HDTV Web-enabled is to purchase an accessory that acts as a bridge between your HDTV and the Internet. These devices have all the necessary outputs (HDMI) and the right inputs for Internet connections (Ethernet or wi-fi).

Other devices, known as "digital media receivers," are a little more versatile. Apple TV ($299) is meant to be a complete home entertainment solution, providing access to your home network as well as the Internet. Apple TV has a quick route to the iTunes store for rentals or purchases of high-definition TV shows and films. It also has YouTube access and lets you watch photo slide shows from Flickr.

The Sony PlayStation 3 ($399) also has digital media receiver capabilities. The Sony PS3 can use wi-fi to connect to the Internet, and though it's not as robust as Apple TV, it's possible to watch online video and get onto the Web through the console's browser.

Hewlett-Packard and Panasonic have taken things a step further by building Web connections right into the HDTV. HP's MediaSmart TVs have integrated Ethernet ports and wireless cards, making it easy to connect to your home network. The MediaSmart interface not only provides a link to YouTube, it also allows you to view all the media content on your computer's hard drive--photos, music and video--on a television.

It's also possible to rent or buy movies in high-definition right from the TV screen. HP put all these features into the HP MediaSmart Connect ($349.99), a digital media receiver that can be used with any brand of HDTV.

Panasonic's Viera Cast is a new feature of the brand's higher-end plasma televisions. Currently, Viera Cast provides access to YouTube, Google's Picasa photo sharing service and Bloomberg News. It can be found on the Panasonic models, which connect to the Internet via Ethernet cables.

These integrated solutions are perhaps the most exciting, as they signal that television manufacturers understand the allure of Internet-connected HDTVs.

The Perfect Marriage? Internet and HDTV

Internet-Ready HDTV - Televisions with Ethernet ports connect to your LAN

2009 saw the introduction of internet capable HDTV and although currently there are some limitations, it would seem the possibilities are almost unlimited.

New TV sets and new websites promise profound changes to the TV landscape. Sony, Samsung, LG and Vizio all said they will produce TVs in 2009 that can display Yahoo's TV Widgets, software that any website can use to deliver content from the Net. TV Widgets include eBay, Twitter, Facebook, CBS interactive, YouTube and more. In short, "cable ready" has given way to "Internet ready."

Granted, the sets typically limit consumers to a finite number of web sites chosen by the manufacturers. Their arrival nevertheless portends profound changes for the future of television. Internet-ready sets weaken the hold that cable and satellite TV operators have over their customers by enabling viewers to receive much of the value of their services for free. Online video sites such as Hulu are already aggregating popular broadcast and cable TV programs, which they deliver mainly to computer screens. Once the average living-room TV can tune in those sites as easily as NBC, viewers may be hard-pressed to justify paying $80 a month for the few shows or networks they can't stream for free from the Net. And cable and satellite operators may find themselves having to cut rates after having increased them steadily for years.

Plugging the internet into TVs and providing open platforms such as Yahoo Widgets means that anyone with a camcorder and a computer will be able to reach the global community.

Internet Ready TV

Demand for Internet-enabled televisions is growing rapidly, according to a new study by the Consumer Electronics Association. The study reveals numerous ways consumers would use an Internet-enabled TV. Having anytime-access to content, and accessing the Internet and television broadcasts together were the top benefits of an Internet-enabled TV, according to consumers. The study also found that most adults are already online while watching TV. Almost a third of online adults say they always or usually surf the Internet while watching television and another third say they sometimes do. Consumers are increasingly willing to shift online activities to the TV.

NETGEAR WNCE2001 Universal WiFi Internet Adapter and Samsung PN64D8000 64-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Plasma 8000 Series Smart TV

Connects HDTVs, game consoles, and Blu-ray players to the Internet
Connects any device with a network port to existing Home Wireless Network Wirelessly
connects networked home theater devices to your home network
Universal - works with any network enabled device. No need to buy a Wi-Fi adapter that only works with one type of device
Avoid long stringing cables. Freedom to place your home entertainment center anywhere and still connect to the Internet

Universal Compatibility
With the WNCE2001 Universal WiFi Internet Adapter, you will no longer need to buy individual proprietary WiFi dongles for the TV, Xbox, etc. because WNCE2001 works with all of them. You can simply plug it into the device when you need to and share it among multiple gadgets.

Wireless-N Technology for Fast Performance
The WNCE2001 adapter supports Wireless-N (2.4 GHz 802.11n) technology for outstanding speed and performance, keeping pace with your home theater

Vizio’s WiFi Internet Ready HDTV

Vizio is based out of Irvine, CA. Vizio is looking to make the Television the next big internet device. While in the midst of creating this vision, they are also creating a wealth of opportunities for developers and a whole new world for consumers.

Vizio's plan is to make their TVs interconnected with the net. What this means for consumers is limitless. Vizio is of the understanding that they can make television a robust internet platform just as the PC and the mobile phone have become. Vizio isn’t just slamming Ethernet cords in the back of TVs. They’ve installed top of the line 802.11n on many of the new XVT series TV sets. Considering that everybody doesn’t have their router positioned near their television, a Wi-Fi enabled TV is a welcome addition.

Vizio is going even further than connecting to the internet. They are supporting Yahoos Widget Channel and Adobe Flash apps. Developers can build an amazing interactive world with TV users. Many big name companies have announced support for the Yahoo channel, but Vizio is the only company that supports both Yahoo and Adobe. Vizio will have a program within the TV which allows users to use Adobe or Yahoo apps on the same interface. Some of the companies that have signed on to produce widgets include but aren’t limited to Facebook, Twitter, EBay, Showtime, Netflix, and Rhapsody. Vizio’s goal isn’t to try to recreate the experience that takes place on the PC, but do develop an individual environment that is similar to that of the iPhone. Vizio's "Connected HDTV" platform includes new models that offer Netflix OnDemand, Blockbuster OnDemand, Amazon Video, Rhapsody music, and Flickr photos. Vizio TV models include a 55 inch LED HD monitor. It will offer an integrated 802.11n WiFi connection, an integrated sound bar and the latest Yahoo! TV widgets.

The TV will come equipped with 2GB of flash memory as well as a Bluetooth remote that has a QWERTY keyboard similar to that of a T-Mobile Sidekick or a Blackberry.

What is an Internet Connected HDTV?

The new generation of Internet capable HD television sets (also called Broadband HDTVs) have a true ethernet port (or wireless adapter) that connects them directly to your router. So your television is truly "on the Internet." This enables the integration of entertainment services like Netflix and Yahoo TV Widgets with your television.

By integrating Netflix OnDemand with your HDTV, you can browse the Netflix library of movies, TV episodes and other high-def content, then view it right on the big screen. That beats getting a DVD in the mail, or even watching a downloaded version on a relatively small computer screen. Widgets

You can use on-screen widgets to watch stock prices, keep track of sports scores, play online games, shop on eBay, even view a web video, while watching your favorite TV show. Think of it as a combination of picture-in-picture and those little banners that display various types on info on news, sports and financial channels. But widgets are interactive and customizable. You decide what happens, and it doesn't matter which channel you're watching.

Samsung, Vizio, Sharp, Sony and Panasonic have recently announced Internet connected HDTV sets that will bring you high-definition movies, music and other online services on demand.


Samsung Apps is a growing collection of premium web-connected apps specifically built for your TV that connects you to your favorite digital content such as movies from Netflix or Blockbuster, TV shows from Hulu Plus, videos from YouTube, Next Level sports information from ESPN, music from Pandora, and social updates from Facebook or Twitter.

These apps let you download and or stream content in real-time from movie and TV libraries. Miss your favorite Thursday night TV show? With Hulu Plus™ you can watch recently aired TV shows from networks like ABC, Fox, and NBC—on your own time.

Internet Connectable (WiFi Built-in). Smart TV with web connected applications and web browser

YouTube: Access to Millions of User-Generated Videos

As a leading online video community for people to discover, watch, and share originally created videos, YouTube allows consumers unlimited access to web based videos.

Netflix: Instant Streaming

Netflix, offering consumers a variety of ways to enjoy more than 12,000 choices of movies and TV episodes. Netflix members owning one of these devices pay as little as $7 to $20 for a monthly subscription for unlimited streaming. Instant streaming content from Netflix to the HDTV will rely on a broadband connection and Queue-based user interface. Netflix members will use the Netflix Web site to add movies and TV episodes to their individual instant Queues. Those choices will automatically be displayed on members' TVs and available to watch instantly through the HDTV. Once selected, movies will begin playing in as little as 30 seconds. With the accompanying remote control, Netflix members will be able to browse and make selections right on the TV screen and also have the ability to read synopses and rate movies. In addition, they will have the option of fast- forwarding and rewinding the video stream.

VUDU HD Movie Service on Broadband HDTVs

The VUDU service allows consumers to instantly buy or rent from an extensive library of movies and TV titles, including an industry-leading catalog of more than 2,000 high-definition movies - with no monthly fees and without having to buy, install, or connect any additional hardware. VUDU's streaming movie service delivers a near-instant viewing experience - movies start immediately, including high definition HDX movies, and viewers can fast forward, rewind and browse chapters without the delays or the frustration associated with slow buffering. The VUDU catalog is updated weekly, and newly released movies from major studios are typically available months before they are available on subscription-based services.


PC Content Sharing
Users can also choose to incorporate the HDTV into a home network to access JPEG photos or MP3 music files stored on their home PC to create slide shows and listen to music on their big screen.

YouTube is the world's most popular online video community allowing millions of people to discover, watch and share originally created videos. YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform and inspire others across the globe and acts as a distribution platform for original content creators and advertisers large and small. YouTube, LLC is based in San Bruno, Calif., and is a subsidiary of Google Inc.

Buying an Internet Connected HDTV

How do I connect the hdtv internet components?:


You can use a wired or wireless connection on many HDTVs. Wired uses the RJ-45 jack in the HDTV and connects with an Ethernet cable while wireless uses the USB port in the HDTV. A wireless dongle fits in the USB port and sends data to your wireless router.

internet wireless hdtv hookup

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RF Modulators and DVD Connections.

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