Google's latest update gives apps a visual refresh; here's how to install it

Google TV home page with new circular icons running along the bottom
(Image credit: Google)

Google has rolled out the latest version of its TV operating system with a modest visual overhaul coming to the apps section. It's by no means a life-changing development, but it does look nice, and Google has even added a new customisation feature.

So what's new? Well, rectangles are out and circles are in, at least in the apps section of the user interface. You'll find round icons in a neat row underneath the 'top picks' row, and the change to circles is more than just a visual upgrade. It has actually allowed Google to fit more apps on one page, without the need to scroll through to find your streaming service or application of choice. 

Don't like the order your apps are in? Or perhaps you'd prefer for an app you frequently use to stay at the front of the pack. Google now allows you to reorder and add apps to this bar; all you need to do is scroll to the end of the row to find these options. 

There's also a new shortcut on the apps bar to directly access the free TV channels that are offered on Google TV. Google says there's everything from "local news to movies to sports, all of which are available without the need for additional downloads, payments, or subscriptions".

This update is rolling out now and is expected to become available to all TVs running the Google TV OS very soon; that includes models from Sony, Philips and TCL, as well as Google Chromecast with Google TV streamers. 

To apply this update, navigate to the settings menu in the top right-hand corner of the home page, select 'system', then 'about system', and you should be able to update the software from there.


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Lewis Empson
Staff Writer

Lewis Empson is a Staff Writer on What Hi-Fi?. He was previously Gaming and Digital editor for Cardiff University's 'Quench Magazine', Lewis graduated in 2021 and has since worked on a selection of lifestyle magazines and regional newspapers. Outside of work, he enjoys gaming, gigs and regular cinema trips.