Telly, a new TV system, is causing a stir among tech enthusiasts. The TV, offered by companies such as Samsung, LG and Vizio, is completely free – the only catch is that it continually displays advertising on a separate, smaller screen. Telly is financed by the display of advertising on this second screen. The Telly company, founded by Ilya Pozin, has developed a thin screen strip called the “Smart Display,” which separates from the main TV by a soundbar. The Smart Display can display a variety of widgets, including sports scores, the news, weather, and stock prices. Dallas Lawrence, Telly’s Chief Strategy Officer, has said that sometimes, when the TV isn’t being used, advertising may use both screens.
However, there’s more to the TV than the two displays. It has a camera mounted in the middle of the soundbar, enabling advanced motion-tracking fitness programs and zoom integration. It also comes with 40 different games and has the ability to play music from popular music services. It even has an AI-powered voice assistant that responds to “Hey Telly” and allows users to set timers or alarms.
Telly’s main screen is a 55-inch 4K HDR panel that interfaces with the Smart Display via Telly’s own operating system, Telly OS. Currently, Telly OS does not support third-party streaming apps like Netflix or Disney Plus. That’s why the TV comes with a free 4K Android TV dongle, which can still be used with any streaming service. The TV is also compatible with other streaming devices like Roku, Amazon Fire Stick, and Apple TV, and has multiple ports like HDMI and USB.
Users can win gift cards for services like Netflix or Starbucks by taking part in on-screen polls through Telly Rewards, a rewards program that Telly is working on. However, the free TV comes at the cost of user data. Telly collects data on consumer behavior, and users who take issue with this must pay for the TV in the end. The company charges the credit card on file $500 if the user opts out of data collection and doesn’t return the TV.
Despite this, Pozin has said that the TV is “by far the most advanced television ever developed.”