As a global electronics giant, Samsung has presence in every room in the home, most notably the living room -- the company recently claimed to be selling three TVs every second. And as we all know, Samsung currently dominates the Android smartphone landscape. So it was only a matter of time before the Samsung TV and Android worlds collided.

At Mobile World Congress this week we got our first look at Samsung's HomeSync, a 1-terabyte TV box with a Google Play-certified Android front-end. HomeSync delivers a full Android experience, with a TouchWiz-based UI that actually scales up really well to the big screen. The main view is a grid of running windows, and you've also got a standard app drawer view, along with on-screen keys you can hit using your pointer.

That pointer is controlled by the companion smartphone app, demonstrated by Samsung on the Galaxy Note 2. There are two optional modes -- touch mode and motion mode. The former gives you an on-screen trackpad you can use to scroll around, laptop-style; the latter allows you to move the cursor by pointing the phone at the screen, similar to a Nintendo Wiimote.

The streaming box ties into Samsung's AllShare ecosystem, allowing content from Galaxy smartphones to be easily shared to the big screen. And of course with Google Play and Samsung's own Media Hub on-board, there are plenty of other avenues open for streaming content to the box.

With a dual-core 1.7GHz CPU and 1GB of RAM inside, the HomeSync box should have enough oomph to handle all the HD video content you can throw at it, and we certainly didn't notice any performance hiccups during our time with the HomeSync boxes at the Samsung booth. On the connectivity side, HomeSync supports Wifi a/g/b/n with channel bonding as well as gigabit ethernet, so network speeds shouldn't be an issue either.

No release date has been offered as yet; Samsung says UK availability details will be revealed "in due course." In the meantime, we've got a couple more photos of the box itself down below.


Reader comments

Samsung HomeSync - hands-on with the Android-powered TV box


Only Samsung phones can work as a remote?? This looks interesting to me, but I think they are going to price it into the stratosphere.

I was interested in this as an upgrade to my WD live TV hub, which also has a 1tb hard drive, however i would want to use a remote, not an app to control the box, therefore i'm out.

Also to be fair, i dont think it does anything that the WD can not do anyway, bar having a few extra tv type apps (i wouldnt play games or anything onit)

The only thing that I'm missing from the WD TV Live Hub is Google Play. It's also missing Amazon Instant Video, but the TV does that natively.

I totally agree.. they are definitely going to have a high price. Sad thing is that it would just be cheaper to get an Android MK802 iiis and a 1TB drive separately. This is the setup I have and it works flawlessly.

Yeah exactly, drop the TB drive and sell it for less. All the media I consume is on my desktop or in the cloud. I would just want a device to pull that content and play it on the TV.

I think the best experience would be to have a smartphone like UI (I'm referring to font size and mobile web). If you think about it TV screens are about the size of a 5 inch smartphone considering the distance and on a TV your consuming content, so we don't need a full version of a web page.
I've try using chrome on the TV but the texts are too small so see at that distance.

No. I've hooked my phone up to the TV using HDMI and everything looks ridiculous huge. A tablet layout and size would be much better.

Has it been confirmed that the app will only work on Samsung phones? Or will it be available from the market for any phone/tablet?

So... still unclear what it is exactly. Does it automatically sync content from your devices...or do you only use them as remotes? How is the codec support? Can I throw 20GB blueray rips on this thing and play them back at full 1080p 5.1 DTS? Does it have an optical out for audio?

yep read some other site that it has all the codecs no surprise really when the s3 can play pretty much any file out the box including which is the format blu rays are ripped into i for what it well from what i understand you can obviously store what ever you want on the 1tb drive and play off locally or you can sync your galaxy device and play what whatever content is on it..also as it has the full play store you can use google movies,netflix etc to stream your movies or if you have files in dropbox etc you can also play it from there, to me it seems like this box has everything other than being a pretty sure it has optical out

Get it below $200 and i'm in. Any more than that and an android mini stick and a big flash drive win out. I love my Rockchip based gadget ($50 from china) it plays hd content easily, and i can plug any USB storage into it. The only thing that it lacks compared to this is a streamlined phone-remote (you need to use either vnc on your phone or a bluetooth keyboard/mouse).

MK808B came factory rooted (as they all do now from geekbuying) so I was able to install Drotemote out of the box. Love that little thing. For ~$60 it's tough to beat.

Ok My question is how is it wired for pass through. I already have a Blu-ray player, PS3, Cable box and Micro HDMI [for my Nexus 10] filling up all the HDMI inputs on my A/V reciever. Can I daisy chain this so it is on the same input as one of my other 4 devices or an I going to have to play the swapping cables game?

I bought a Matrix HDMI switch a while back from mono price. Best investment I ever made. I can watch any device, on any TV in the house (or all TVs) at the same time, or mix and match.

All media equipment is in an out of the way closet with HDMI run through walls to TVs (Bedrooms, Billard room, theater room). Then I can control it with a Harmony 900 RF to IR remote.

Can you seriously only stream to the with galaxy phones? Ok there apple er ah samsung, what's with the walled garden? Give me wifi direct Nd dlna and I would spend good money for this. Not buying if it's not compatible with phones other than urs

In my part of the world it will be just another media streamer as I suspect that there will be no content available unlike Apple that has movies (no TV though) Content is king otherwize I may as well stick with my WDTV..

I have got similar product from VEOLO. It has multiple format support.
I like that I can play Angry Birds using remote. And I use ArkMC applicaiton for DLNA media streaming.
And I like that I can browse Internet on the large screen. It has qwery keyboard on the opposite side of remote.

So...every android app on tv? Game changer. This is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better than Google TV or Roku. This is a reason to switch to Samsung within the android family.

Google TV is Android, it supports all Android applications (check by yourself in Android SDK) just filtered down in Google Play :p Google could easily solve it by detection of mouse. Besides Google TV if it's gonna be noticeably popular content application developers will come to Google TV pretty fest

Seems like a waste. If you have a Samsung smart TV you already have what you need, if you have a Google TV box you have what you need. Seems like another thing to plug in to my TV. I can do all of those things and more from my Xbox and Google TV box.

They need to take all of that software and HDD space and put it into their TVs. That would cut out all of the extra pieces and streamline the experience instead of convoluting the experience..

Can someone please answer me this question. Does the device actually run apps and I don't mean by syncing either and I don't mean basic apps. I mean most apps in the Google play store. Angry Birds, Temple Run etc? Because then this device is no better than Google TV. Yeah syncing might be cool but they'll be a delay. WTF can't they create a device for a TV with a Android tablet OS? It's always half-assed. I guess that's why Ouya exist?

That was my point exactly. Why can't it operate just like your phone/tablet plugged into your tv? Same internals, just runs a big (tv) display.

Yes! I'm getting tired of these limited Android devices for TVs. You get some primitive first gen version of Android that can only run a limited amount of Apps. Simple ones too. How hard is to release a device that runs exactly like a mobile phone or tablet but on your TV? This whole syncing thing is lame.

Did you guys not read or watch the article you are replying to? It is running full Android 4.2 with full app support.