TCL fixes buggy 5-Series and 6-Series Google TVs

Mike Wheatley

Having been forced to briefly halt U.S. sales of its premium 5-Series and 6-Series Google TVs as a result of some software bugs, TCL says the TVs have now gone back on sale.


The company said to The Verge that recent software updates have resulted in “significant improvements” with regard to the stability and speed of the TVs that run the Google TV platform.

TCL had halted sales of the 5-Series and 6-Series models after they were pulled from sale by Best Buy, one of the biggest online retailers in the U.S., due to numerous complaints of sluggish, buggy software.

TCL’s 5-Series and 6-Series TVs were launched in the U.S. in August. They are premium TVs, with the latter model featuring a Mini-LED display with thousands of local dimming zones, plus HDMI 2.1. The launch was significant because it represented a big departure for TCL, which has for years partnered exclusively with Roku TV in the U.S.

“With these updates, this product now represents the powerful performance that TCL and Google believe is the future of TV,” TCL spokesperson Rachelle Parks told The Verge.

The teething problems were perhaps understandable as the TCL 5-Series and 6-Series TVs were the first to be powered by Google TV, following a long and exclusive partnership with Roku. So it’s quite likely much of the hardware in the TVs was never designed to work with Google TV, hence the need to work out the kinks.

That said, many of Sony’s 2021 TVs also run the Google TV platform and have not experienced any bugs, so we can only really speculate about what went wrong for TCL.

TCL said 5-Series and 6-Series TV owners should receive an automatic prompt to install an update to their sets that contains the latest firmware. However, if they don’t see the update they can also install it manually by following the steps explained on this page on TCL’s website.