KDE Plasma Bigscreen for TVs and TV Boxes Offers a Linux Alternative to Android TV

KDE Plasma is a desktop environment initially developed for Linux Desktop PC or SBCs, but that’s also available on Linux phones with Plasma Mobile (previously known as Plasma Active).

The developers have now decided to work on a version for the big screens with Plasma Bigscreen suitable for TVs and TV boxes and offering an open-source, Linux-based alternative o Android TV.

Plasma Bigscreen
Click to Enlarge

Plasma Bigscreen is community supported, completely free and open-source, and offers an interface fairly similar to Android TV launcher. It is optimized for IR remote control use including (experimental) CEC support, as well as voice control through MyCroft open-source AI & voice assistant and Bluetooth or RF remotes with a built-in microphone such as WeChip G20 or W2, or a USB microphone.

By default, Plasmas Bigscreen connects to Mycroft’s Home server, which uses Google’s STT (Speech to text) sending anonymized utterances to Google, but it’s also possible to switch to self-hosted systems such as Mozilla DeepSpeech, or just de-activate voice recognition if you worry about privacy.

YouTube KDE Plasma BigScreen
YouTube App – Click to Enlarge

There are only a few apps and skills available right now including YouTube, Bitchute, and SoundCloud music player, but the list should grow over time.

A modified KDE Neon beta image for the Raspberry Pi 4 has already been released to allow people to easily try out Plasma Bigscreen on their TV. You’ll find the source code, download link, and more information on the project’s website.

Via Liliputing and Tuxphones

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4 years ago

I wonder what happened with plasma media center. Is that project still alive.

4 years ago

They should copy Windows Media Center UI and not Android TV

4 years ago

Most of these projects end up in the trash, because of the lack of technical means, and especially quality application. I think for example of the support “VPU” (video accelerator), something that “AndroidTV” masters perfectly. There is also the absence of Netflix, not great for a TV project. When is “DRM” support ? The installation gz archive is very heavy 1.8 Gb, and 8 Gb once decompress, it must certainly contain, too many unnecessary libraries (Debian Buster). This project on a Buildroot environment, will reduce its size, while preserving the needs. In short, a lot of questions, but I’m keeping… Read more »

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