Google TV’s ambient mode screen saver with sports scores and podcast links is rolling out

Last fall, Google announced a key improvement to devices running its Google TV front end with personalized access so that each user in a home could have individual profiles with their own recommendations and Assistant responses. In December, that feature was delayed until “the coming months,” and it’s still nowhere to be found; however, 9to5Google reports glanceable cards for Google TV’s ambient mode screen saver that were also announced at the same time are starting to roll out.

When they were announced in October, Google showed a version of the UI (the picture above) with large personalized cards scrolling across the middle of the screen. They could display information like weather, sports scores, and news or toss in shortcuts to content you might like, including podcast episodes, music, and photos.

The new Google TV screensaver
The new Google TV screen save

On the devices where it’s showing up so far, however, 9to5Google mentions that it actually looks a bit different, with smaller information chips lined up across the bottom of the display with stuff like YouTube video shortcuts, a podcast in Google Podcasts, or a prompt for Google Assistant. If it’s enabled on your device, they mention that an indication should be a menu prompt telling you “proactive personal results are now on” so that you can go to the Assistant settings and turn them off if you don’t want them on your TV screen.

As with most things Google, the exact timing of the rollout is unknown, but with Google I/O kicking off tomorrow, maybe we’ll hear more about its smart TV features then.

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