Tablo App for LG SmartTV

I am aware that much of the info. here was hashed out in the Blog several years ago, but people are still buying LG SmartTV’s, and I thought it useful to summarize the situation again here.

I have a new LG OLED SmartTV. Like many of you, I have found the Tablo App available to LG WebOS has a few problems. From this blog I have learned various bits about those problems with the Tablo App for LG. However, I feel that I was not given the entire story.

The fact is the Tablo App. for LG WebOS TV’s is EXTREMELY POOR and has no chance of getting better. It is no longer supported by Tablo and has not been undated in at least 6 years.

While this App. does barely work, it is sorely lacking as compared to the Tablo App. for Roku or Firestick. It will not do subtitles. It’s TV guide is limited to 24 hours, regardless of whether you play for the Premium 14 day guide. It probably lacks other features that I am no aware of.

The only realistic way to use Tablo with an LG SmartTV is to also add an external streaming device like Roku or FireStick. This seems absurd, given that you are essentially duplicating many functions of your SmartTV. It is not clear to me whether there are SmartTV’s out there, which do have a reasonable Tablo App. I only know for sure that LG and Samsung do not.

The Android TV version works well on Sony TVs with Android. I have several of these TVs.

It’s my understanding that there are TVs with Roku built in that work reasonably well.

The real issue is this - think of how many different TVs are out there, many with different OS (LG OS is unique - no other TVs use it), and think of how many different apps a company would have to build and support. It is almost surprising that the app is still available for the LG OS.

I have two of their TVs and their OS stinks so badly, I use either the FireTV or Roku sticks on the TV all the time. I purchased their TVs because they support MLB.TV (in December), and the first season (4 months later), MLB.TV pulled the app, saying they no longer supported the OS.

Since most users can’t predict what services they will use or want to use in the future, trying to force a service’s app to function on an obscure OS is self-defeating.

Maybe there is a reason for amazon prime day.

Keep in mind that the streaming software in a “smart” TV is there for two main purposes. To capture your viewing data for a third party analytics company and to show you ads and/or show previews for third party content providers. The TV companies get paid good money to include this software in a TV, which is why you don’t hardly see any dumb TVs lately. Check your local Wal Mart and you will find that all of the tvs, including the 19 and 24 inch 720P set are smart now.

A lot of us with “smart” TVs still use an independent streaming device because the TV manufacturers that are TOO CHEAP to spend money on the Android TV OS/Fire TV OS/Roku OS/Apple TV OS systems build their own and have a limited number of apps available.

I own a Vizio with the stupid Smartcast system and don’t even use it. In fact, I don’t have the TV connected to the Internet AT ALL. The firmware updates are basically just to update the Smartcast software that I don’t use in the first place.

If I were in your position, I would get a streaming device and dismiss the LG WebOS as just a useless piece of bloatware that LG forces on you to subsidize the TV.


I love the Roku app for Tablo. The OS itself is fine too. The remote control is where Roku could do better. They need the ability to control soundbars.

It’s hard to argue with that. I wouldn’t touch a Smart TV OS other then Roku, Fire, or Android right now. I found all the other OS lacking.

You are both correct. Unfortunately, a TV becomes a Roku TV by paying a fairly steep fee to Roku. From what I can see, only fairly unknown TV brands (Hisense, TCL, Westinghouse), which really need the extra push in the SmartTV market are willing to do that.

I’m afraid anyone who wants to superior picture offered by an OLED TV is pretty much out of luck.

You appear to be correct about Roku and OLED although I wouldn’t call all those brands unknown. Generally speaking those concerned about superior pictures aren’t going to be a fan of the standard Tablo anyway because of the compression used. Those people will generally prefer the Tablo HDMI which doesn’t require a TV app or use compression. Android as an OS or a streaming stick are also an option for those wanting OLED. Android is very comparable in features to Roku.