GoogleTV, Nexus Q, Chromecast – Android TV, this could be the product succession of Google’s attempts at gaining entry to the lucrative loungeroom market according to a new report from GigaOM. The report says that Google is looking to launch a rumoured Android TV, not as a device, but as a platform for TV and set-top box makers, which will focus on online video streaming services and gaming.
According to GigaOm, the core underpinings of Android TV will be something called ‘Pano’. Pano will be the key to a ‘simple’ design which will allow Android TV to surface content from the individual apps running on the platform in cards, which come to the front when you search for content. This new interface gels quite nicely with the interface shown off earlier this year in a report from TheVerge, which GigaOm confirms is consistent with what they have been told the service will look like.
According to sources they’ve spoken to, Gaming is the reason why Google is looking to launch an Android TV platform in addition to their already successful Chromecast product. Sources state that while the Chromecast is great for streaming video, for more powerful applications like gaming, more powerful hardware is required or ‘think of it as an Ouya done right’. Though, having Chromecast support built into the hardware of Android TV it shouldn’t be discounted, as the idea of ‘casting’ has certainly taken off.
Which manufacturers would be on-board with an Android TV platform could range from large name manufacturers like Sony, who don’t really have a marketable SmartTV platform in place at this stage, to the other end of the scale to manufacturers like HiSense or the US focused brand Vizio.
While the successful introduction of Chromecast – sources have told GigaOm that Google has sold Millions – has certainly been a boon for Google in establishing relationships with online content streaming companies like Netflix, Hulu and HBO Go, which their Google TV platform failed to do; There’s some logistical stumbling blocks for Google, well at least one anyway – that name. For more explanation, just check out the AndroidTV domain. Still, Google could always throw money at that particular problem.
Exactly how a platform like Android TV will work in Australia, where streaming services are few and far between, and even then are locked down fairly tightly, is anyones guess. Perhaps we won’t even see an Android TV product in Australia till larger names like Netflix launch their service down here, which is rumoured to be next year (but who even believes these rumours anymore?). We’ll most likely see more on Android TV at Google I/O next month, but it’s certainly an interesting concept.
Do you think AndroidTV is what is needed and will it launch here in Australia?