Best TV for home automation

@rpwong It’s a more than just TV tunner channel. Could be input source (HDMI) as well as browser.

Here’s one use case I have in mind:

  • Motion sensor in the Porch area is triggered.
  • Monitor rule will kick in to alert of activity outside the house.
  • If the TV is currently on, overlay a message. User can switch to the camera stream manually.
  • If the TV wasn’t on, and if there is someone close to the TV (presence), turn it on and switch over to the camera stream. 5 minutes later, turn it off.

Right now, I send an alert and play TTS over a Google Home audio device. But above is what can be done to automate the viewing of the camera stream on the TV.

I have in mind.


Although you can’t specify overlay messages on sony without installing an app (and using it’s API). The sony one could…

  1. Motion sensor in porch triggered
  2. Rule kicks in
  3. If TV is on, switch to picture-in-picture mode and switch the PIP window to showing the camera stream (you could even specify where to popup the PIP window [so maybe upper right for normal PIP and upper left for camera alert PIP])
  4. If TV is off, turn it on and switch to camera stream

EDIT: if you really wanted some weird stuff, you could also strobe or pulse the power led on the TV as well or any number of other things (play some tune, etc)

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Yes, it is 2019 model. Sorry, too lazy to look at its back and name the exact model. Too bulky to move.
It actually works not only with Sideview, but they (like other vendors) have some fun with implementing mouse input in a non-standard way, so common Android TV remote control apps can’t feed in pointer input. Sideview can.

I asked about an external TV tuner specifically because that’s more challenging than changing the input source or the built-in tuner. It’s mostly just to clarify your original requirement so that you don’t have any surprises.

From what @tmrobert8 is saying, I think a Sony TV would be interesting to play with (knowing you could add an IR solution if need be). It’s great that they appear to have made Android their default OS, so there’s no premium for adding it.

For your example above, one thing to consider would be how long it takes for the TV to turn on or for the user to change to the web browser manually. In this specific scenario, you might be better served by a wall-mounted tablet running HabPanel.

I’ll be curious to hear where you land on this!

BTW, another cool feature of Sony TV. They still supply normal remote control with numeric buttons on it. I don’t know about LG, but at least Samsung stopped packaging these remotes with TVs; they just think it’s not cool any more. And controlling the TV with only menus completely sucks.

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@rpwong, the user would only manually change to the cam stream if they’re already watching something (they get an overlay notice message, and can choose if they want to act on it). I could also change the logic to automatically switch to the cam stream. If the TV is off, then it could be programmatically turned on and immediate switch to the cam stream.

@Sonic Good point on the remote. You and others do make me think about Sony now. They don’t seem to have mid-range TV though. I rarely watch TV so I don’t want to pay too much for it. LG has some mid-range ones at close to $1K. I am still thinking… :slight_smile:

This is exactly what I do right now with my LG TV. I also play a little chime on my google home. I don’t have a camera so I haven’t done anything related to a camera stream.

The PIP on Sony sounds great though. I don’t know if LG can do it.

LG remote has a numeric pad which can be used as shortcuts to launch app, e.g. press and hold 1 to start Plex, 2 for youtube, 3 for disney+, 4 for browser, etc. My most favourite feature is the magic cursor / wand thing. Helps a lot for typing

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LG Wand is the best way to control a pointer on the TV screen, i agree. Unfortunately they have apparently patented it, so nobody else can do it. :frowning:
But they still have a crappy closed HTML-only OS, which is not DIY/hack-friendly.

The current binding does not use connectsdk anymore. but it is correct that the library is not maintained and that there is no documentation for the interface. at least to my knowledge

I use my LG32LF630V with the WebOS binding. Probably apart from your last bullet, every function is supported in this model. My TV has WebOS 2 so I guess newer models would also have at least the same functionality.

One rule I really enjoy to use is when I switch to the component channel, a 433Mhz switch turns on and powers my Nintendo Wii (and vice versa) :smile:. I don´t know if other TV company´s have these possibility´s.

Thanks guys. I am still waiting for a TV promotion :slight_smile:
I narrowed down to either the LG 65UM7300, or Sony XBR65X850G or XBR65X900F.

Plus for Sony TVs:

  1. Android OS
  2. Officially supported API
  3. Very good picture quality, 4 HDMI, and so on.

Minus for Sony TVs:

  1. More expensive.
  2. Consume lots of power, 200W. My current Panasonic 42" plasma TV consumes 380W.

Plus for LG:

  1. Cheaper (unless you get into OLED TVs)
  2. Less power hungry. The model above is less than 100 W. OLED TV is a lot hungrier.

Minus for LG:

  1. Access API is no longer supported.
  2. Lower picture quality; less HDMI inputs (3 vs 4).
  3. Need a Chromecast; that takes a way 1 HDMI port.

I rarely watch TV. I need a new one so that it fits better with my bigger living room and to replace the power hungry plasma TV. I am very surprised how hungry Sony TV is. At this point I will likely go with the LG.

Why not buy a Philips TV? I can reliabily switch on and off my TVs via LAN and Wifi with the Philips TV Binding.

You got Android OS, a cheaper price than the Sony TVs and not that high of power consumption.



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@yfaway - btw the Sony API is officially supported internally to sony but not publically (there is little to no documentation on the APIs). This has been a 4 year journey learning/working through all their APIs and discovering how to use them all.

The power consumption is because you picked two of the more powerful (pro) models - however, there is an array of power consumption options (both available through the TV options and through the addon) that you can largely manage that. However, I will say it’s standby power (with WOL support) is a bit higher than other TVs

Good luck with your choice however you make it!!

I have bought Vizio TVs specifically because of the ability to control them well. I don’t think you can put text on the screen very easily. Might be able to dynamically rename the input to achieve that?
I also have not tried to go to any URLs directly, but I do have a computer connected to the TV and can achieve opening URLs on that computer remotely. Also open URLs with a Fire Stick on occasion.

Standby power is, in my opinion, a bigger concern than operating power (though both are important). Since @yfaway and I are in Canada, here’s an article that runs down the standby draws for some typical devices. It’s a few years old, but conveys the general idea.

I’d like to say that I’m concerned about standby power, but if I were truly serious about reducing electricity costs then I’d remove all of my automated plugs/switches and unplug every device that’s not currently in use (TVs, microwave, phone chargers, printer, etc.).

@regnets I don’t think Phillips has a binding to control the TV.

@QuagmireMan Thanks for the pointer. I considered Vizio but I believe their image quality is behind LG, Samsung & Sony. Not that it matters much. But interfacing with it through Python 3 could be a challenge from the Jython script.

@tmrobert8 Wow, I didn’t know you have been spending that much time reverse engineering the API. Thanks for all the hardwork.

@tmrobert8 & @rpwong, I agree with you guys on idle power. I am using couple of TPLink smart plugs now to turn off the power to devices including my plasma TV at bed time, and turn it on again in the morning. The smart plug itself takes some power, but it is still a gain if the power bar it controls has several devices.

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I’m with you on that. As long as it’s a net benefit, it’s all good. My light switches are more about convenience, but I justify the consumption by having replaced all of my incandescent bulbs with LEDs four years ago.

I have a power bar that senses when my TV is on standby and turns off the external speakers, but I hadn’t considered running my TV through a smart plug to further reduce its draw when I’m asleep/away. I think I’ll have to do that.

@yfaway I linked to the binding in my post and i am using it since a few months.

There is also a JavaScript version too, but I don’t think it is as up to date.


I installed pyvizio but I get the following error when I enter the following command “python3 pyvizio --ip=0 discover”

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "pyvizio", line 7, in <module>
    from pyvizio.cli import cli
  File "/home/openhabian/.local/lib/python3.5/site-packages/pyvizio/", line 94
    f"Invalid device type specified. Use either '{DEVICE_CLASS_TV}' or "
SyntaxError: invalid syntax

Any suggestions?