Samsung may have shown us the future of advertising after adverts interrupted Smart TV owners videos.
The controversy arose after a Reddit user claimed that Pepsi ads started playing while he was watching movies and shows stored on his Plex media server. The ads only played on his Samsung TV and not on tablets or smartphones which access the same server. On Monday, various Samsung smart TV owners in Australia complained that Pepsi ads interrupted their Foxtel (Australian cable TV service) broadcasts, writes Stan Schroeder of Mashable.
A user on the Plex forums wrote that in order to disable the ads, users should click “disagree with the Yahoo Privacy Notice.” In order to do so you have to search deep in Samsung’s Smart Hub options menu. A spokesman for Plex said that this has nothing to do with the company, which would suggest that Samsung’s TV software is at fault.
Further evidence is provided by the fact that Samsung smart TVs were the only devices affected by the issue. A Foxtel employee claimed that “this absolutely should not be happening and has been escalated immediately,” and Samsung later released a statement. The company stated that the ad showed because of an “error that occurred as part of a recent software update that was not intended for the Australian market.”
Privacy issues with Samsung smart TVs
Although Australian viewers may find comfort in the statement, it certainly could be interpreted that Samsung is considering inserting ads in other markets. The company has previously stated that it may start offering “interactive experiences” to which users will have to “opt-in.”
Reports also surfaced this week that Samsung smart TVs may be recording anything that you say within range of its microphone or remote control. Samsung moved to assuage the concerns of viewers concerning their privacy, but the televisions are definitely capable of recording and transmitting data to third parties, the issue is whether users have to request it to do so.
Samsung is surely concerned by these two issues with its Smart TVs, and needs to act quickly before consumers start to question whether they can trust the brand.