Customize Android TV home screen?

Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 6:32 pm

Is there any way to customize the home screen on Android TV? (I specifically have the XBR-55X850C). The current layout is way too cluttered with useless apps like the "Bonus Offers" and DirectTV ones that I am never going to use, not to mention so far the "recommendations" the TV makes are useless. There is one or two apps on the "Featured Apps" level that I might make use of, but the others are on the regular Apps level. I'd prefer it if I could have a row of favorite apps at the top so I can quickly get to what I want with fewer remote clicks (with the additional benefit of less clutter on the home screen).

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Kate Murrell
 
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Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 7:00 pm

Hi there, welcome to the forums!

I have the same TV model, unfortunately at the moment, the Home screen customization options are very limited. Hopefully one day Android or Sony will help expand the choices you have.

That said, you do have the ability to adjust what you see in the Reccommendations feed on the Home Screen. Its under SETTINGS > HOME SCREEN > Customize Reccomendations (or something like that). From there, you can go on an app-by-app (and feature) basis and choose which to show or hide. For example, I have everything hidden except for WATCH TV, and YouTube reccomendations. Because I just like having another button to be able to return to TV, and do like pulling up YT videos from time to time.

Other than that, the rest of the screen can't be customized, aside from deleting apps outright from the system, which Im partially a bit hesistant still to do in case it messes the system up. (I too, do not need a DirectTV app haha). That said in theory if you delete the app it might remove itself from your apps - if not featured, at the very least, from the installed apps list.

Hope that helps, but yeah, I'd love for in addition to reccommendations, allow Featured Apps to instead be Favorite Apps which you can pin to that menu.

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Kayla Keizer
 
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Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 6:07 pm

I have read somewhere that Sony is not allowed to change Android TV design which is strange because what you see is the standard Android TV launcher. Currently, there is no specific launcher for Android TV except app sideload launcher called HALauncher https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=net.i.akihiro.halauncher&hl=en

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Colton Idonthavealastna
 
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Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 7:10 pm

It's kind of frustrating that a company that makes great hardware makes such cluttered software. I get they want to maximize profits by selling me other services, but if it makes their TV interface less appealing, they aren't doing themselves any favors. I was seriously considering LG because their WebOS interface is much cleaner, and in retrospect that might have been the better option. But I guess in the meantime I'll just use my Roku for "Smart TV" features (especially since it can output 5.1 surround in Plex and Amazon Instant Video, which the TV's apps are currently incapable of, which is another disappointment).

If anyone from Sony reads these, please at least give us a prominent favorites row, and let us uninstall useless advertisemant "apps". Even better would be the ability to customize the order of the layout, but I won't expect too much.

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jessica Villacis
 
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Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 7:14 pm

Actually it is not entirely Sony's fault...it is due to Google Android TV Material Design guidelines

http://developer.android.com/design/tv/index.html

https://developer.android.com/distribute/essentials/quality/tv.html

http://venturebeat.com/2015/05/28/google-expands-material-design-guidelines-for-android-tv-auto-and-...

However, they are just guidelines and Sony seems not interested to revamp other than include the Action menu and Discover menu features.

http://ux.stackexchange.com/questions/76161/is-it-mandatory-create-new-android-apps-in-material-desi...

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Jonathan Montero
 
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Post » Mon Dec 07, 2015 6:50 pm

Resurrecting an old thread, but I was rereading the first link

and I can't help but point out that the image of the Android TV home screen they show is pretty much what I want! The top is recommendations, the second category is just all apps, and the third is games, then settings. I would love to ditch the "Featured Apps" section on the Sony version because all those apps CANNOT be uninstalled at all (at least, I haven't figured out how to uninstall them). Sony added the Featured row so they can sell things, and that's just frustrating since the interface is worse off for it.

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Jennifer Rose
 
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