LG's 2024 TVs are taking a leaf out of the smartphone book and providing free updates for at least five years. So just as you can still get iOS 17 on your ageing iPhone 12, so your 2024 LG TV will run the latest version of webOS until at least 2028.
There are a couple of caveats. Older TVs won't get the latest update as soon as newer TVs are available, and they won't necessarily run every new feature (for example, if it relies on specific hardware that the older TV doesn't have). But it's a convenient – and free – way of making your TV feel fresh and new.
"In 2025 if we have a new version of webOS – which we will – then 2024 LG TVs will eventually get it," said David Seperson, LG's director of global marketing and communications.
But it's not the only new feature coming courtesy of webOS 24.
Recommendations are now added to the home screen in a Top Picks For You bar along the bottom. These are based on your viewing history. To make room for them, LG has shrunk the 'Quick Cards' that it added last year. This is a change that What Hi-Fi? has been pushing for since the launch of webOS 23.
The Quick Cards (which are essentially folders for apps along a certain theme such as Gaming or Home Office) might be smaller this year, but they're now dynamic – hover over them using the 'Magic Pointer' remote control and they expand to give you more information. This also presents you with your last activity within that card and lets you jump straight back into it without opening the card first.
webOS 24 still supports up to 10 user accounts, but these can now be password-protected to stop anyone interfering with your viewing history and skewing your recommendations. Every user account now has its own Picture Wizard AI setting too, so you can watch exactly how you want without having to calibrate the TV each time.
LG's 2024 TVs will soon be able to recognise individual voices and recommend content based on that user's viewing history. It's a quick way of switching ID without having to log out and in again. This feature will launch in the US and South Korea in the first half of 2024, and will come to other markets later.
The Multi View feature can now split the screen into four sections rather than two, thanks to the extra power from LG's new Alpha 11 processor. Two of these sources can be HDMI, so you can watch your cable box, Blu-ray player, cloud gaming and YouTube simultaneously.
Chromecast built-in is now supported, so you can 'cast' content from your phone to your TV and then turn off your mobile or leave the room without affecting what's on the TV screen. As with LG's previous TVs, the 2024 models will also support Miracast and Apple AirPlay.
Finally, there's a new Accessibility tab that brings together lots of features such as the ability to view the menus in greyscale and set up hearing aids. This is complemented by a chatbot that can help with features such as brightening the picture while you're watching.
LG has sold over 200 million webOS devices since 2014, and is aiming to hit 300 million by 2026. That might sound ambitious, but with features such as NFTs, the metaverse, telehealthcare, home fitness and educational content available alongside more traditional uses such as cloud gaming and video streaming, its TVs certainly have a lot to offer. Let's hope webOS 24 is a step towards presenting a unified experience.
LG's 2024 soundbars revealed: sleek designs and wireless Dolby Atmos
Check out our picks of the best TVs