Of all the "smart" devices, few are more controversial than the smart TV. The idea makes a lot of sense: Combine the best parts of a computer and a television into one super-machine. What could go wrong?
Well, as popular as smart TVs are - especially in the luxury tech department - many critics dislike the format, and the technology is surprisingly susceptible to ransomware. Companies have had to defend their inventions again and again and compared to simpler and less expensive forms of entertainment, the smart TV is struggling to earn its place in your family room.
The latest issue is privacy. Certain models keep tabs on their owners in uncomfortable ways, and there's really no good reason for this kind of shifty behavior.
Our advice: Turn the feature off. Here's how to do it.
Vizio recently came under fire when customers realized that the advertising was a little too familiar. That's because Vizio smart TVs were keeping track of what owners watched and then tailored advertisements to them specifically. This happens even if you're using an external source, like Amazon Fire or Roku.
This may not shock you, given how many advertisements follow you around the internet based on cookies you've accumulated along the way. Banner ads for your favorite Amazon products may appear in your Yahoo feed, for example, and Facebook could write an encyclopedia about your preferences.