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LG strikes new deal with Google to bring Google Play to webOS

Those with LG smart TVs are about to have more options to stream video directly from their flat screen. In an intriguing new partnership, the company announced that it will add capability for Google Play Movies & TV to its WebOS smart TV platform (as well as its older NetCast 4.0 and 4.5 platform) this month. This will make webOS the first smart TV platform outside of Google’s Android TV system (included on select Sony TVs) to offer access to Google Play Movies & TV directly.

“U.S. consumers are increasingly demanding fresh, high-quality content and we’re seeing the smart TV market grow rapidly as a result,” said LG USA exec David VanderWaal in a statement. “Offering our consumers the best possible home entertainment experience is our highest priority and our partnership with Google to offer Google Play Movies and TV helps LG deliver more quality content options along with leading TV picture quality and a simple and fast smart TV experience powered by our webOS Smart TV platform.”

The new partnership means that users will be able to rent and buy from Google Play’s selection of new, classic and independent TV and movie offerings. Users will also be able to seamlessly watch Google Play content between their LG TVs and smartphones, tablets or PCs.

LG Smart webOS-enabled TVs currently offer the ability to watch programming from a variety of streaming apps, including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, YouTube, and Vudu. Adding Google Play should help the brand keep users streaming directly from their LG TVs, rather than going to an outside streamer like Google’s Chromecast.

LG also recently announced that it will offer an upgrade to its older generation TVs to its relatively new webOS 2.0 system, which offers a “more intuitive” layout and shortcuts, reduced boot-up time, and improved responsiveness.

Availability for Google Play Movies & TV will eventually be available in 104 countries, according to LG, although the service will initially roll out in just the U.S., the U.K., Australia, and Canada sometime this month.