In this article we provide a step-by-step guide for setting up your digital signage with AndroidTV devices.
- Choosing an Android digital signage player
- System requirements for the TelemetryTV Media Player App on Android
- Setting up the TelemetryTV Media Player App on your Android Device
- Important information about the use of Android digital signage players
ANDROID FAST FACTS
What are the advantages of these devices?
- Easy to set up
- Can be both paired or provisioned based on your use case
- Good quality Android devices are reliable. Please see our recommended devices below.
What are the disadvantages of these devices?
- Reliability and quality can vary widely depending on the device. Please see our recommended devices below.
- Even if the device supports 4K video output, it will display the application at 1080p and upscale to 4K.
- Not recommended for video walls.
What software is required to run TelemetryTV on these devices?
Android 7.1 or later
What are the system requirements for running TelemetryTV?
2GB Ram (4GB suggested)
8GB Storage (16GB or more suggested)
CHOOSING AN ANDROID DEVICE
We recommend the 2019+ Nvidia SHIELD TV and the Nvidia SHIELD TV Pro as the best performing and most compatible AndroidTV devices. You can find more information about these devices here.
Generic Android TV Devices
There are many inexpensive AndroidTV devices available on Amazon. Something to note is that you do get what you pay for. Most of these devices have questionable quality and software, so you’ll need to test the specific device to make sure it works for you and for the content you’d like to display. Generally, the Nvidia Shield is a vastly better option if you want a device that will be supported over the long term.
Recent generation (2019+) Sony TV’s often have AndroidTV built in. Not all SonyTV’s will work, so please check the specific model for AndroidTV compatibility. These are decent options for deploying TelemetryTV as they do support using TelemetryTV as a launcher. However, you should be aware that they have limited RAM and storage, so this may not be a great option for more intensive digital signage functionality. You will want to look for the 800G series of TVs or better.
TelemetryTV Android Media Player App
TelemetryTV provides an Android application designed to allow you to deploy digital signage on Android based devices. The application works on AndroidTV as well as tablet devices running a recent version of Android.
Minimum System Requirements
You must be running Android 7.1 or later and your device must have access to the Google Play Store. Additionally, your device should have at least 2GB of RAM and 8GB of storage. More storage and RAM may be optimal depending on the content you would like to display.
TelemetryTV does not require any specific system webview component as the rendering engine is built in to the application for greater compatibility.
Setting Up the TelemetryTV Android Media Player
Installing the Android App
Ensure your device has access to the Google Play Store and search for “TelemetryTV”. Install the app on your device. You may find the application here:
Starting TelemetryTV On Boot
In order to get the full kiosk experience, you must configure your device to automatically open the TelemetryTV application when the device powers on and boots up. There are two methods to do this, either through setting TelemetryTV as the launcher or allowing the device to boot and having the TelemetryTV app automatically start itself once the device has fully started up. The method you will use depends on your particular Android device, so we will cover both below.
Option A: Setting TelemetryTV as the Launcher
The launcher is the grid of icons you see when your Android device starts up. Some devices allow you to change the launcher to another application so that the other application is started instead of displaying the default icon grid. TelemetryTV is able to act as a launcher on compatible devices. The first time you manually start TelemetryTV you will be given the option to set TelemetryTV as a launcher (on most devices):
This means that the TelemetryTV Media Player is the app that your device runs after booting. This also means that you can easily access the app through using the ‘Home’ button on your Android device.
☝️Note: If your particular Android device does not support setting TelemetryTV as the Launcher, or Home app, you can enable Auto Start Functionality (outlined below).
Option B: Enabling Auto Start Functionality
If your device does not support setting other applications as a launcher, then you can rely on TelemetryTV’s Auto Start functionality. We recommend enabling both Launch on Boot and Auto Restart App settings for a better experience (both are enabled by default).
- By using the ‘Launch on Boot’ option you can ensure that your Android device will boot into the app, even if the device does not support changing the ‘Home’ app. With this setting, you will see your device launcher show, and around 30 seconds later, TelemetryTV will automatically startup.
- By setting ’Auto Restart App’ you will also ensure that the app will reboot in the event of exiting. This is useful for maintaining uptime in the event of an unexpected crashing of the app. With this setting, TelemetryTV will also automatically restart itself if it crashes or is exited.
Open the App’s settings menu, check “Launch on Boot” and "Auto Restart App":
☝️Important note: We do not suggest turning on "Auto Restart App" until your device is installed in its final destination and is connected to the wifi network which it will use. This setting can make it difficult to set up wifi as the app will try to restart if you exit it.
Pairing or USB Provisioning
To connect your device to your TelemetryTV account, you will either need to pair or provision the device. The TelemetryTV Android app supports both Pairing and Provisioning, however USB provisioning will only be available on Android devices with a free USB port.
Pairing is suitable when you’re setting up a small number of devices (e.g. less than 10). However, if you have many devices to set up, you should use Provisioning.
Option A: Pairing
- To pair your device, ensure you have your TelemetryTV account open to the Devices page on your computer.
- Turn on your device and open the TelemetryTV Media Player that you downloaded to your Android device. When the player is running, a 6-digit pairing code will appear on the screen.
- On your computer, click the “Pair” button on your TelemetryTV Devices page and type in the code.
Option B: USB Provisioning
USB Provisioning is an efficient and effective way to provision multiple devices without needing to enter a pairing code for each one. We recommend using this for deployments of 5+ devices.
Your AndroidTV device will need an extra USB port to use this method, so it will not be available on all AndroidTV devices. Read the guide at the link below:
Using the Remote Control
Your AndroidTV device probably came with a remote control. The remote control can be used for the following:
- Show the application settings menu and configure your device (using the select or menu buttons)
- Navigate between playlist pages manually (using the forward and backward buttons)
- Pause and start playback (using the play/pause button).
Below is an image of the 2019 Nvidia SHIELD TV remote to give you a better idea:
Clearing the Cache
If you need to clear the cache, you may open the application settings menu and select “Clear Cache”. This is useful when you have third party websites that may have cached content that isn’t being cleaned up properly.
A limitation of all current Android devices is that, even if the device supports 4K video output, it will display all applications like TelemetryTV at 1080p and then upscale it to 4K. This will not look as good as other devices that natively do 4K. However, Android will play video at 4K when there’s a 4K video present.
Video Wall Support
Android devices are not recommended for Video Walls due to their limited 4K support. There will only be an upscaled 4K signal available for display on video walls. Since Android devices typically only have a single display output, you would need to purchase and put a video wall matrix between your screens and your Android device.
Securing your Device
You may want to consider covering the IR port on your device so people cannot take it over in locations where this would be a concern.
Changing the Screen Orientation
You may want to change the screen orientation for display on vertical screens. Within the App menu, select Screen Orientation to adjust the display for vertical or horizontal screens.