WebOS has been the standard smart tv platform for LG televisions since 2013. Almost every year improvements and / or new features are introduced. WebOS 4.5 was born in 2019. The leading interface remains colorful and playful. Which new features should you definitely try out?
WebOS 4.5 – Installation
Our guide is based on a LG OLED65C9 . During the installation you will be guided by “Bean bird”, the LG WebOS mascot. You select language, country, a pin code, the environment in which the TV is set up (home or store, definitely do not choose a store that is only for promotional purposes), and then connect it to the network.
In the following steps you accept the conditions of use and you determine how you watch television (via the tuners of the TV and / or via a decoder).
Since 2019, this step applies to both the Netherlands and Belgium, and that is good news. Because whoever uses a decoder can set the Magic remote as a universal remote for the decoder. You can also do this later by launching ‘device connection’.
Also install the mobile app, ‘LG TV Plus’
WebOS 4.5 – Home Screen
The Home screen of LG was then a few years ago introduced recently became quite revolutionary, and it is still one of the most user-friendly systems on the market. All sources and functions of the television are available via large tiles in a ribbon at the bottom of the screen.
Over the years, the Home screen got more and more features. In that respect, WebOS 4.5 marks a turning point and a return to a simpler environment, which still has that same familiar look.
The icons at the top right (the search function, the music player, the inputs, and the gear icon for all settings) ) have disappeared, just like the icon for the LG TV plus app.
Inputs and settings are now easiest to reach via the buttons on the remote. The search function was given a place in the ribbon below, and you can also activate it via the microphone key on the remote.
WebOS 4.5 – Magic Remote
The Magic Remote from LG deserves some attention since it is an essential way to operate WebOS. The remote got the adjective Magic because you control the cursor on the screen with it just by pointing at it. That may take a bit of practice, but it gets used quickly and is very handy in many cases.
You don’t have to make grand gestures to control the cursor. We usually rest our hand with the remote on our leg and make small movements with the wrist. This way you keep your hand (and the cursor) stable. The ok key in the middle of the d-pad also serves as a scroll wheel. With that you can, for example, quickly scroll through the Home ribbon, or through TV channels. If you need to quickly go through many options in any part of the TV, make sure the scroll wheel works.
The Magic Remote can also be used as a universal remote for the connected source devices. You do this by starting up “device connection”. This can be done via the general menu, ‘Connection, Device connection’ or via the ‘Home dashboard’ and click on ‘Settings, Device connection’ at the top right.
In a few steps you select the type of connected device, the mark, and then you get some tests to see which ir commands work. The new Magic Remote has a Play and Pause button at the bottom, but for other functions, you will often use the ‘More Actions’ button (on the right next to the ‘0’, with three dots as a label), with which your menu with possible actions calls. That menu depends on the connected device.
WebOS 4.5 – The ribbon
The ribbon at the bottom of the Home screen is where you can actually find all your content. One of the most important changes is the addition of a second, contextual ribbon, above the first, as soon as you select certain tiles (LG calls this AI Preview). We already know that feature at Samsung. It is a very handy way to quickly view certain things, select recent apps, or choose connected devices.
The first tile on the left (webOS) has no function, you can hide it by
The following tile contains three functions: the search function, the new Home dashboard (see below), and the TV function. Depending on your choice during installation, the latter option sends you to the built-in tuners or to your connected set-top box. All these functions offer AI Preview (with TV this is only if you use the built-in tuners).
The tile next to it contains all your recently used applications, this tile also offers AI Preview.
The ribbon further contains mainly icons for smart TV apps, and built-in TV functions (such as the media player). A number of things such as external connections have been moved to the Home Dashboard.
Of course you want to adjust the Home screen as much as possible based on what you use yourself. This is possible in two ways. Or you order the tiles according to your own insight. Select a tile and hold down the scroll wheel. You then enter edit mode and you can move the tile. After pressing the ok key, the tile falls into place and you see an “x” above the tile. Press the up arrow and then ok if you want to remove the tile from the ribbon.
The “intelligent edit” option arranges the apps in order from most used to least used. This way you can adjust the screen in a few clicks, but that will of course only make sense for the first time if you have used the TV for a few days or longer.
It is now possible to add YouTube channels add to the ribbon. In edit mode, select Add YouTube channel and search for your favorite channels by name.
Then you simply drop the tile somewhere in the ribbon.
WebOS 4.5 – The Home Dashboard
Everything you connect externally to the television can be found in the Home Dashboard. You will find all external inputs, but also media servers (DLNA) that are on your network and connected USB sticks. On the left you will find shortcuts to the manual to connect devices, and the option to play your smartphone audio via Bluetooth on the TV. If you use the LG TV Plus app, your smartphone will also appear here. You then play the media from your smartphone directly on TV via that tile. For this, the app asks for a pin code on your smartphone, which is the pin code you entered during the installation of the television.
The Home Dashboard also contains a section for IoT devices on the right side. You can add devices that use the Open Connectivity Foundation here. With the red key (or click on the pencil at the top right) you can adjust the contents of the Home Dashboard. The only modification we could make was to give the HDMI connections a different name.
WebOS 4.5 – Useful apps
In the LG content store you will find an extensive range of applications. At the top you can choose to see LG’s recommendations (‘Recommended’) or to easily browse through all apps (‘Apps’).
We consider these to be a good start selection for everyone. Please note, availability of some apps depends on the country selected for LG services. (setting: Menu / General / Location / Country of LG services).
Streaming services video: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Google Play films, Moviemax, Dvdpost, Pathé
Streaming services music: Spotify, Deezer , Digital Concert Hall (Berliner Philharmoniker)
For the Netherlands there are NPO, RTL XL, Kijk, NL Ziet.
In addition, the store has a whole range of other streaming services such as Anixe, Filmbox live, Viewster, Mubi, Rakuten. There are also various apps for radio (eg Radio Nederland by Mytuner).
Plex : Kodi is not available on WebOS, but as an alternative media library, install Plex (or the alternative one) interface Xplay). Plex does require that you have a Plex server in your home network that contains all your media.
TV Vlaanderen : With this app you can view the channels of the satellite provider TV Vlaanderen ( or TéléSat if you want to watch the French version), without a satellite dish on your roof. Of course you do need a subscription. In the Netherlands you get Channel Digital.
If you want to use your smartphone as a remote, install the LG TV Plus app. You can select other inputs and also easily share the content of your smartphone on the television.
Via the TV app list you can also easily start all kinds of apps or internal functions. It is an excellent and very complete app.
WebOS 4.5 – Casting
LG TVs do not have built-in Chromecast such as Android TVs but do support casting from YouTube and Netflix. That works exactly like with Chromecast. Just click on the cast icon that appears on your mobile in YouTube.
You can also send the full screen of your smartphone or laptop (on condition that they support Screen Share) to the television.  WebOS 4.5 – AI Recommendations
After a while, the TV may give you certain recommendations. This may concern certain settings (such as activating an AI image, or assigning a Quick start button) or certain content that the TV thinks may be of interest to you. The recommendations appear in a small bar at the bottom of the screen.
If you find it disturbing, you can turn it off via the menu, ‘General / AI Service / AI Recommendation’.
WebOS 4.5 – Quick start
Are you looking for a way to quickly launch certain apps or inputs without passing through the home screen? This is possible with the help of Quick start, long press on one of the number keys to start the linked application. How do you make such links? Long press the “0” key and you get the Quick start overview.
Here you can select all kinds of sources that you assign to a number key, or remove certain links. The “9” key leads to a short manual.
WebOS 4.5 – Tips for the WebOS settings menu
Those who want to quickly select a new image mode do not need to go to the full settings menu. Click on the gearwheel (on the remote) to bring up the quick menu.
With this you can adjust the following: image mode, aspect ratio, audio mode, audio output, sleep timer and network.
Wil if you have the full menu, then select the three dots at the bottom of the column. Or you can go directly to the full menu by holding down the gear key for a long time.
- “Energy saving”: Select “automatic” if you want to use the light sensor. The brightness of the image is then adjusted based on the ambient light in the room.
- ‘Additional settings / HDMI Ultra HD Deep Color’: If you connect an Ultra HD HDR source to a specific HDMI input, activate that input then Ultra HD Deep Color so that you get the very best image quality.
- ‘Additional settings / Instant Gaming Response’: This activates ALLM (Auto low latency mode) so that the TV automatically jumps to game mode when you start gaming.
- “One Touch Sound Tuning”: To adjust the sound to the room acoustics, activate this setting. After a small test that you perform using the built-in microphone in the remote, you can opt for a standard adjustment, bass boost, or treble boost.
- ‘Additional settings / AV Sync Adjustment’: is the synchronization between image and sound error (sometimes occurs if you use external sound solutions) you can enter the necessary delay here.
- ‘Additional settings / Volume mode’: here you can choose to have the volume leveled automatically so that large volume differences partially disappear.
- “HDMI Device Settings”: If you want to turn off connected HDMI devices automatically when you turn the TV off, activate Simplink (HDMI-CEC) . You can then also execute some commands from the source device with the TV remote.
- “Location”: Country of broadcast determines which channels are automatically tuned. Country for LG services gives access to certain apps that are only available in select countries.
- ‘Additional Settings’: Uncheck’ Home-Promotion ‘to remove the useless first tile on the Home screen.
- ‘ About this TV ‘: Open this submenu to perform any software updates. You will also find the complete manual there.
- “Pointer Options”: Here you adjust the speed of the Magic remote cursor. You can also choose a larger or smaller cursor image.
WebOS 4.5 – Voice commands
LG ThinQ AI offers extensive voice recognition but for the time being it is not yet available in Dutch. You can already record searches in Dutch. Depending on your search query, you will find results from Netflix, YouTube, and you can always click on the links at the bottom of the results to perform the search in a browser. Dutch, we discuss it in a separate article. WebOS is also equipped with the Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, you don’t even have to have a Google Home or Amazon Echo for that, but unfortunately, Dutch support is missing. As soon as this changes we will let you know for sure.