Researchers have previously discovered that certain popular Android TV boxes, available on Amazon and endorsed with top ratings, were found to be preloaded with malware. These devices were manufactured by uncertified brands that gained popularity due to their low cost. However, unbeknownst to consumers, these devices engaged in ad-click fraud behind the scenes to generate illegal profits. In light of this situation, Google has issued guidelines to help consumers avoid purchasing such products.
If a device like this comes with Android TV, it doesn’t necessarily mean is accredited to run Android TV. Google maintains rigorous security and privacy standards for Android TV, and devices seeking certification must undergo thorough testing to ensure quality and user safety. Only after the tests are successfully passed, the products receive the Android TV certification and become listed on the official partner page.
Here are the steps that you should follow, in order to make sure your device is safe to use:
Check the manufacturer status
If you consider buying an Android TV from the store, it is highly recommended to verify if the manufacturer. Go to the official homepage, under the Global Partners section and simply check the list. If it’s present in the list, then you can be sure to trust the products sold officially by the manufacturer through their authorized channels.
Check Google Play Protect status
Although, it is important to note that there still might be a chance of counterfeit or tampered products. Therefore, you should take an extra step and verify the Google Play Protect status of the device. You can do that on a demo unit, or on your own unit after the purchase. In cases of non-authentic devices, the typical “Device is certified” status will not be displayed by Google Play Protect. This absence suggests that Google apps, like the Play Store, have been sideloaded onto the TV box instead of being officially licensed and pre-installed. Consequently, this lack of certification serves as an indicator that the product is not genuine, and it should raise concerns or red flags.