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Can A Smart TV Be Used Without Internet?

Smart TVs are at their peak, with some smart TV models coming with Touch Screen features. But what happens when you don’t have access to the internet, but you have access to your smart TV? Can a smart TV operate without the internet? Let’s find out.

You can use a smart TV without the internet. The smart TV is somewhat functional as long as it’s plugged into a socket and has access to electricity. The downside to the lack of internet means that users will not have access to smart features and thus have limited potential use. 

Can A Smart TV Be Used Without Internet

Thanks to smart TVs, accessing content has been a lot more convenient and faster. But accessing that content means that users will have to get WiFi for their homes. The smart TV turns into a complementary product. 

But the question still needs an answer, can you use a smart TV without the internet? If you’re interested in finding out more about this query and more, feel free to keep reading for additional information.

Also read: Why Your Smart TV Is Slow and 7 Ways To Fix It

Can A Smart TV Be Used Without Internet?

As shared earlier, you can use a smart TV without the internet. It may be a smart TV, but the overall theme is that it’s a television. The original purpose of televisions was for entertainment. 

Users could watch their favorite shows without any problems. Now the modern-day smart TV offers that and more. Heck, there are smart TVs with cameras (check my recommendations) and touch screens. 

TV manufacturers are rolling out smart TVs as fast as they can and within the limits of the current technology. Currently, if you want to buy a smart TV, it comes in 4K. Manufacturers no longer make 1080p TVs or any TV with a resolution less than 4K.

Not only that, but the majority of TVs that manufacturers are making are all smart TVs. Furthermore, WiFi networks are turning into the norm worldwide. A study shows that the global internet penetration is at 59.5%. More than half the global population uses the internet. 

Internet penetration refers to the number of people that use the internet. So, if over half the globe is using the internet, you’re looking at thousands, maybe even millions of WiFi networks worldwide.
In 2021, the Internet Service Provider industry recorded a revenue of $117.9 billion in 2021 alone. 

What do all of these numbers mean anyway? These numbers show that TV manufacturers are resolute that if a buyer purchases a smart TV, they most likely have home internet. So, they make the best features of the smart TV function with the help of the internet. 

However, they can’t rely entirely on the internet, so they make it such that users can still enjoy their smart TV even without the internet. 

What Are The Smart TV Features That Require Internet?

When you have the internet alongside your smart TV, it’s like Ali Baba finding the treasure in the cave. It unlocks the ultimate potential of your smart TV. Here are some of the best features that you can only access on your smart TV with the internet:

  • Streaming apps: Everyone loves to binge-watch their favorite shows, movies, etc., on their favorite platforms. The internet gives you access to streaming apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, Paramount+, Hulu, etc. Not only that, but you can also access other streaming apps like Twitch.   
  • App Stores or the App Market: Next on the list is the app store. The app store like Google Play Store allows you to download and install other apps onto your smart TV. So you can download games and the like to your smart TV the same way you’d do it with your phone. 
  • Software updates: One of the most important things you can do for your smart TV keeps it up to date. Software updates are only available with the WiFi, and sometimes they automatically install when the TV is not in use.  
  • Google Cast: The next best thing is casting. If you want to cast content from your phone to your TV, casting is the best way to do it. Thankfully, most apps like Spotify, Apple Music, etc., come with a casting option to simplify things. 
  • Smart Assistants: Google Assistant and Alexa are proving to be the new generation in technology, and with internet connectivity, users have access to their convenience and ease. 

What Are The Smart TV Features That Don’t Require The Internet?

Fortunately, even without the internet, you are capable of scrolling through some features on your smart TV. The keyword here is some. 

The internet isn’t a key that locks you out of your smart TV. You have options at your disposal. Here are some of those features that you can use on your smart TV without the internet:

  • 3rd Party Devices: If you Satellite TV, DVD Players, or Blu-Ray players, you can watch content from these devices. They do not require the internet, and most of the time, the content is in your hands. There are some scenarios that the Satellite TV might experience an outage, but you can contact your Satellite TV customer care and get assistance. 
  • Gaming Consoles: Next on the list is gaming consoles. If you didn’t know, you could play single-player games from a disc on the PS5. You can also do the same with the Xbox Series X consoles.
    The main thing is that you need a disc that contains the game; if you already have that, you’re good to go. It may seem ancient, but it works, and you don’t need the internet. 

So apart from these two options, there’s little else you can do with your smart TV. It is a smart TV for a reason, it allows you to use the smart features, but those smart features need the internet to function. 

It’s why we consider the internet to be a complementary product. What is a complementary product? According to economic experts, a complementary product is a good that experiences an increased appeal due to its complement. So, in essence, a product that adds value to another product. 

In our case, the internet adds value to the smart TV. It’s like toothpaste and a toothbrush, they are two vastly different products, but the toothpaste is a complementary product.

It adds value to the toothbrush. So even if you can use the smart TV alone, the internet will help add value, making it an even better product. 

How Do You Connect Your Smart TV To The Internet?

The setting up process is pretty simple. After unboxing your smart TV, all you need to do is plug it in, switch it on, and connect it to the internet. Here’s a more detailed version of the process:

  1. Ensure that your WiFi router is on and working
  2. Switch on your smart TV
  3. Go to the settings app (that is if you haven’t received a prompt to connect to your WiFi router)
  4. Click on Network
  5. Click on your WiFi SSID (SSID is short for Service Set Identifier, and its the unique name of your WiFi network)
  6. Click Connect
  7. Input the password

After inputting the correct password, your smart TV should have access to the internet. How do you know? You should receive a notification on your screen that the connection was successful. 

You can even try accessing your favorite streaming apps like Youtube and watch content. You can log in to your account and watch your favorite content at the touch of a button. 

The connecting process is pretty simple. It should take you a maximum of three to five minutes (if your WiFi password is really long) to complete. Another great thing about smart TVs is that they come with an in-built keyboard that you can access when you type. 

You can type in the password using the arrows on your remote, or you could have an external keyboard connected through a USB. Either way, it’s pretty straightforward, and dare I say it, you can’t get lost. 

Smart home entertainment and the internet

What Can You Do When Your Smart TV Can’t Connect To The Internet?

There are instances when your smart TV cannot connect to the internet but worry not; here are some quick solutions that you can apply to help you solve the problem.

  1. Restart your smart TV. Sometimes your smart TV needs a little jumpstart. You can think of it as clearing tasks on your computer. When you switch off your computer, all tasks cease, and it’s like working on a clean slate. 

It’s the same concept. Unplug your TV from the power source, leave it off for three to five minutes and then plug it back in. You can switch it on and try reconnecting your WiFi.

  1. Restart your router. Maybe the issue doesn’t lie with your smart TV but with your WiFi router. Unplug your router from the power source, leave it off for three to five minutes, and then switch it back on. Try reconnecting your WiFi after the router is fully up and running. 
  2. Conduct a speed test. Sometimes the issue can be a bit complicated, so you may need to do some detective work of your own. Go to your preferred search engine (Google, Safari, etc.), search the term ‘speed test’, and the site should conduct a speed test. If the results show that your WiFi is too slow, you can move on to the next step below. 
  3. If none of these options work, the next best thing is to contact your ISP. ISP is short for Internet Service Provider. Call your ISP support and have them troubleshoot the connection issue. If your speed test registered a slow internet, call them and inform them of the issue. 

Sometimes, there might be signal ‘noise’ in the channel causing a lot of buffering, disconnecting, etc. If you are experiencing those issues, relay that information to your ISP. They are the only people capable of solving the issue. 

  1. If there are no issues with your ISP, you can contact your smart TV manufacturer for support. They should be able to assist you with the problem at hand.
  2. Last but not least, contact a smart TV repair expert. If you want to save a buck or two, this method isn’t the cheapest.
    If you’ve tried everything and your smart TV still won’t connect to the internet, you may have to acquire the expertise of a smart TV repair professional. 

Please note that manufacturers don’t make smart TVs to fix them but to replace them. 

The worst-case scenario will be to get a new TV altogether if the issue persists beyond repair. If the smart TV is new, you can contact the retailer and request a refund. 

Conclusion

At the end of the day, smart TVs are just TVs but on a more advanced level of technology. They still maintain their original purpose, to entertain the audience. They do it through the internet and other tools they have at their disposal. 

You can use a smart TV without the internet as long as you have 3rd part devices like Satellite TVs, Blu-Ray, DVDs, etc. You should get your daily dose of entertainment through these channels and your smart TV. 

Smart TVs are the future, and manufacturers won’t stop making them; it would be in your best interest to procure a monthly internet subscription.

Helpful FAQs.

What Device Can You Buy To Turn My TV Into A Smart TV?

You can use a smart media player, and it will do the job. You have selections like Apple TV, Amazon Fire Cube, the Roku Stick, etc.

Can You Cast A Screen On A Smart TV Without Internet?

Unfortunately, casting from whichever device to your smart TV requires internet, and both devices must stay connected to the same WiFi.

How Can We Watch TV Without Cable Or The Internet?

There is free local broadcast TV that anyone can access with the help of an antenna and a television capable of watching digital signals. Ensure that you have a TV made after 2007. 

Sources

  1. Smart Home Starter, WILL A SMART TV WORK WITHOUT INTERNET CONNECTION? Smart Home Starter, https://smarthomestarter.com/will-a-smart-tv-work-without-internet-connection/ Accessed October 30th, 2021.
  2. Robert Silva, Smart TVs: What You Need to Know, Life Wire, https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-a-smart-tv-4140172 Accessed October 30th, 2021.
  3. Joseph Johnson, Global digital population as of January 2021, Statista, https://www.statista.com/statistics/617136/digital-population-worldwide/ Accessed October 30th, 2021.
  4. Ibis World, Internet Service Providers in the US – Market Size 2005–2027, Ibis World, https://www.ibisworld.com/industry-statistics/market-size/internet-service-providers-united-states/ Accessed October 30th, 2021.