Is Google TV the future of television?
Google TV is a Smart TV platform co-developed by Google, Intel, Sony and Logitech. It was announced on May 20, 2010 at Google’s I/O event and initially launched on October 6, 2010.
Google TV uses the Google Android operating system as its base and Google’s Chrome web browser as the internet gateway. The combination of Andriod with Chrome creates an interactive overlay for existing TV services. This means developers can create apps to run on the network and users can watch TV and surf the web at the same time.
Applications for the network create a whole new user experience.
For example, the Netflix app provides access to its large library of movies and TV programming and the YouTube app displays your favorite videos. With Google TV, you can be watching a program while searching the web for more information about the show or the topic or whatever else you want.
You can even create bookmarks to access your favorite content with a single click.
Google TV devices are shipped with remotes that contain a full QWERTY keyboard, but you can also use your smart phones as remote controls for Google TV.
As an entertainment platform, Google TV is still finding its legs. The Dish Network has fully embraced Google TV and is actively promoting the service to its users. However, some other cable networks have blocked access to their web content by Google TV devices. In August 2011, Sony reduced the prices of its Google TV enabled HDTV’s in an attempt to gain market share. Logitech announced in November 2011 that it will stop making Google TV devices entirely.
Reviews from users are mixed. Some love it, others love the potential, but see it as an incomplete technology. Google TV may not be completely ready for wide spread consumer use, but this is definitely where the future of TV is going.