Hacking LG’s Netcast


LG released a line of Internet-connected TVs in both the US and Europe that utilize Yahoo TV widgets to bring interactive content to the living room. While it sounds like a great idea in theory, users have been disappointed to find that LG has approved a measly 15 widgets since the TVs were released.

OpenLGTV.org.ru user [xeros] has started working on a project that aims to enable more useful content as well as homebrew widgets. The project is known as OpenLGTV BCM, and not only covers LG television sets, but all sets based on the Broadcom platform.

A ton of progress has been made already, as they have been able to install their own busybox environment as well as open the sets to accept more widgets via some clever signature spoofing. The ultimate goal for the project is to completely divorce the sets from the Yahoo platform and replace it with their own open marketplace.

It’s a great start, and we can’t wait to see what sort of progress they make as time goes on.

[Thanks, T]


  1. wifigod says:

    Is there a published list of all the Broadcom-based sets out there? I currently have an older model LG Plasma with no Netcast capabilities, but I’m looking to upgrade my TV sometime this year; haven’t narrowed it down to any particular brand yet and this information would be nice to have. :-)

  2. Hirudinea says:

    @wifigod – I feel for ya wifi, I bought an LG wireless Blu Ray player but it has no Netflix in Canada and LG customer support is less than nothing, so I hope these nice LG hackers can help us.

    • Marnie says:

      I am in the same boat. Wireless BRplayer and a version of netcast with nothing but YouTube and the weather. Access to the internet would be nice or netflix. Have you found a “solution”.

  3. Max says:

    Wait, one more computing platform promptly locked tightly shut by the good little deal-forging, revenue-stream-hunting marketroids…? Cute…

    I find that with age I’m starting to have roughly zero tolerance for this sort of shenanigans.

    I wish all the lack to OpenLGTV and whoever works on this….

  4. xorpunk says:

    Sony and Samsung sets also use signing inside of compression wrappers on their sets.

  5. Jakob says:

    Have too test this…

  6. ged says:

    is there an update for my lg 42le4900 to give me full netcast (smarttv)

  7. X-TraxxX says:

    Looks like the OpenLGTV team is looking for more support from North America. Testing,logging, and noting your experience will help with development and support for LG TV’s in Canada and the US. Its great to see they can give net access to TV’s with only a usb port available using a USB adapter.

    check out the site: http://openlgtv.org.ru/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

    or the irc channel: http://webchat.freenode.net/?channels=openlgtv

  8. xeros says:

    Thanks :-)

    It’s worth to mention also other projects for previous LG TV generations: LGMOD and LGMOD S7 (and of course OpenLGTV (not BCM) which inspired all of us).
    Here’s the list of supported TV models for all projects: http://openlgtv.org.ru/wiki/index.php/Achievements
    OpenLGTV BCM starts now (currently limited) support for newer models also (BCM35230 platform, AKA SmartTV) but it’s not going to be flashed there (anyone to break through bootloader security?) but only run chrooted from shell (still giving access to WebUI, additional services, additional tools, etc).

  9. Brad says:

    Great… crapware has made its way to the smart TV, they found another way to force us to watch their advertising and force apps on us that we really don’t want. Rooting phones have become big because of crapware, Rooting smart TV’s is about to begin.

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