Adobe has secured a deal to put its Flash software into many of the chips that go inside TVs and set-top boxes.
It will enable developers and content providers to create applications to deliver web-based content such as news, weather and share prices to TV screens.
Flash will be included on most chips -those made by Broadcom, Intel, NXP and STMicroelectronics – but the deal does not cover TVs made by Sony and Samsung.
The first applications using Flash are expected to hit TV sets early in 2010.
It could also mean TVs being used for many of the tasks now given over to a computer or laptop, such as using a search engine, online maps, and consuming all manner of digital content.
Adobe has signed up video delivery service Netflix, Disney and the New York Times to make the first batch of applications.