Top critical review
Worked great for a year. Then it stopped.
Reviewed in the United States on May 10, 2020
When I first got this TV I left glowing reviews. I really loved it. I left it unedited so that you can see how happy I was, and then how quicly disappointed I become. Update below.
I'm not what anyone would call a videophile or home theater geek. I like things to look and sound good, but I don't measure every spec, or performance detail. I do, however, listen to others so I did check out a few trusted YouTube reviewers who do put it through it's detailed paces, as well as all around tech reviewers, and they were all pretty positive on it...so I decided to pull the trigger.
All things considered...price, size (I got the 50"), function, performance...this is an awesome TV!
Build quality is great. Very thin bezels. Solid..glad to see right and left set of legs. Had a single, middle leg TV once, and it kinda sucked. Started leaning to one side after a while. Lesson learned. Won't have that problem here.
Also, pleasantly surprised to see an Ethernet port on the back of the TV. There are 2 USB ports back there as well, and I'm hoping at least one can be used to add additional storage.
I'm Google/Android user...phones, tablets, Chromebook and so on. I use Play Music on my desktop, in the car, and subscribe to a lot of YouTube tech and music channels. I've been using Fire Stick, Ruku, and Chromecast for years..using each for a different purpose…which sucks. It's always a challenge to see which dongle does timely YouTube app updates, or even has YouTube at all, and no one has a Google Play Music app.
I'd never used Android TV, so I was skeptical but hopeful.
Set up was quick and easy, scan a QR code, choose which account and that's it! You're all signed in to all your Google stuff.
I like the Android TV interface a lot. Easy to use, easy to find things, easy to install apps. I put all my favorites on the home screen (Netflix, HBO, Prime Video, Hulu, Disney, Pluto, Tune In Radio, Fandango, Sirius XM, and so on) so no need for me to have additional dongles hanging out of the back of the TV which means fewer power cords to worry about as well.
Having access, sync/ cross compatibility with Sirius XM, Play Music (home, TV, car, phone) is everything to me!
How I'm using it
Since I'm using it as an all around, multipurpose Office/2nd TV I have cable box, PC, XBOX running through an AV receiver then to one of the 3 HDMI ports, and also Optical audio out into the receiver. This set up works pretty well and to me the picture looks great no matter what content you throw at it.
I also installed file explorer app so that I could access files and stored media on my NAS and Google Drive! A decent file explorer app lets you sign in to your Drive, Box, Drop Box, Amazon Cloud Drive, One Drive, and others. You can also access SSH file transfer, Wi-Fi file sharing features and more.
Additional functionality and peripherals
Yes, one of the USB ports on the back can be used for additional storage. I put a 64 GB low profile USB flash drive in it, and it formatted it as additional storage. It will also play media from a USB device and mostly likely a properly formatted external hard drive. Plug in your storage and it will format it for you.
Yes it has Bluetooth. I've connected my phone, keyboard and mouse via Bluetooth and they work flawlessly.
One of the reviews I watched said to turn of all the enhancements, set everything to medium or 50%, put in theater mode and let it do what it does. I took that advice and to me it looks fantastic. Plenty bright, crystal clear. 4K content looks great! As I said, I'm not one to tweak and obsess..I just want a great picture, easy/intuitive, and work well out of the box and this does.
I thought the sound from the TV speakers was pretty good. Better...fuller than what most smart TV's have by default. I think if you're using this out of the box without any additional speakers for a while you're going to be just fine.
As another reviewer mentioned, there is a thin black bar...or framing that is present. I probably wouldn't have noticed if they hadn't mentioned it. Considering how amazingly thin the actual frame/bezel is, it's really not enough to deduct away from all the other things this TV does right, nor does it take away from the amazing picture. In pretty much every circumstance it's not noticeable..at least not to me.
This was one of those buys that I was fine taking the risk, but probably wouldn't have recommended it to someone else who wasn't all in on Google or tech-savvy. But now that I've had it a bit and see how both the hardware and the software performs, I absolutely LOVE it!
13 months later, it stopped working. First I started noticing little glitches. It would hang and never recover. I'd have to restart it to get it going again. Then one day it didn't recover and system restore was the suggested option. I did that. Worked fine for 2 days, then it said it had an update. Did the update and it never turned on again. The LED is lit, but it will not turn on. TONS of articles and videos about this issue with this TV, I did all the suggestions. Still won't turn on.
Contacted Hisense support. 13 months, so "sorry you're past the 12 months hardware warranty.".
However, the support agent said they could "request" a manual update. Meaning they'd send me a link to download an executable file that's supposed to fix the issue.
Of course, the download for this fix to a KNOW ISSUE isn't posted on their website, so customers can access it easily. After giving them a copy of my purchase receipt, and the TV's serial number, now they want my home address. For a software download. I ask why they need my address for a download link, double-talk ensues. I give it to them. Now I have to wait 24-48 hours for the link. What? I just jumped through every hoop, and you can't just give it to me?
Worst costumer care ever. If this is a KNOWN ISSUE, why do you have to jump through so many hoops for the software fix? Why isn't this a download on the support page of your website like EVERY OTHER electronics manufacturer does?
Suffice it to say I'm not as happy as I was when I purchased it, and now Hisense's handling of this issue and overcomplicated hoop jumping just to get a possible fix adds a level of frustration and ridiculousness that makes me never want to trust this company again. If a year is all you expect out of a TV, then get this model.
The saga continues. Finally, 5 days and 3 phone calls later....I got the email with the firmware. It didn't work. Contacted support again and supposedly someone is going to contact me to schedule a service call. TV has been out for a week now.
It's about 3 weeks later. Hisense did finally schedule a service tech to come out. He replaced the board, and the TV started up and worked again. It's been about 7 days, and it's still working. Still not sure if it was the update or the board just went out on its own. Tech says it could be either.
Bottom line Hisense did fix it. It wasn't easy, or timely, and the customer support wasn't good..too much run around..but at least I have a TV again. Not sure if I'll trust another update. May just stick a streaming stick in it and stop using its smart features and disconnect it from the internet altogether.
Considering all that has happened, I raised it to 2 stars. Quality control and customer support needs to be better.