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Google TV Announced With Intel, Sony, and Logitech

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the you-like-dexter-and-barney dept.

Google 224

MojoKid writes "Google's own I/O conference in California is wrapping up today, but not before the company goes out with a serious bang. Google just announced something that has been rumored for a while now: Google TV. Basically, Google is taking the Apple TV concept, but going way overboard by introducing apps, screen customization, and channel searching. Following Google's own announcement, Intel stepped in to provide some backbone to the story. Google is obviously using the big players to move Google TV forward, with Intel, DISH Network, Best Buy, and Adobe firmly on board. Google TV itself is based on Android, runs the Google Chrome browser, and will allow users to access all of their usual TV channels as well as a world of Internet and cloud-based information and applications, including Adobe Flash-based content."

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224 comments

Google TV (1, Informative)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284058)

It's going to be open sourced, but I seriously hope they can include drivers for the TV hardware or even some generic drivers. Android for mobile phones being open source is useless because you cannot get drivers for any of the hardware, so you cannot actually use your modifications with your device. That defeats the purpose.

I hope it also doesn't integrate too much with Google's or anyone else's Internet services. Make it work with those, but also provide an easy way to disable all such things.

Other than that, it could be a really interesting TV. Currently I have to stream content from my PC to my PS3 which then shows it in the TV. My PS3 media center has to transcode most of the content on-the-fly. Since this is linux-based Android it means you could have xmbc-like application and everything along those lines directly on your TV, with great networking capabilities. If you can also make your own changes and builds of the Android OS for it, we can install even more suitable OS for us geeks.

Re:Google TV (5, Informative)

dave420 (699308) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284132)

They have developed an IP-based method of communicating with the TV hardware itself. That will be open-sourced, along with the rest of it, in 2011. It combines internet media with traditional TV channels, seamlessly. I watched the stream, and it looked pretty interesting. How many adverts they can throw at you, however, remains to be seen.

Re:Google TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284274)

How many adverts they can throw at you, however, remains to be seen.

Not more than what we see today on normal TV, for sure.

Re:Google TV (2, Funny)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284356)

How many adverts they can throw at you, however, remains to be seen.

Not more than what we see today on normal TV, for sure.

Famous last words...

Re:Google TV (0, Troll)

Philip K Dickhead (906971) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284470)

This is Google - remember?

Like the famous "In Soviet Russia" meme, On Google TV, Advertising watches You!

I said before - and will insist at every turn - that Google is a BAD IDEA and a WORSE REALITY. They are in everything from the "smart grid" to mobile phones and television. Do you remember "Brazil"? Google == Central Services.

And with the TV we are one step closer to the 1984 Telescreen. Don't be evil, my arse. They feed right into this:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Core [wikipedia.org]

Re:Google TV (1)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284598)

Some more fields to add on their database of YOU. Searches for ______ porn... and watches________.

Not necessarily good news.

Re:Google TV (1)

dubdays (410710) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284514)

How many adverts they can throw at you, however, remains to be seen.

Not more than what we see today on normal TV, for sure.

Famous last words...

...until you start seeing the "FCC be damned" ad varieties. GoDaddy FTW!

Re:Google TV (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285132)

Per the other story today, it depends on your statistics. For example, I see an advertisement 100% of the time I watch tv currently. It would be hard to increase that stat. But, of course, I could see more than the 2 or 3 ads I currently see in any given second, or they could be more intrusive, etc.

Re:Google TV (4, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284374)

They have developed an IP-based method of communicating with the TV hardware itself.

Not so fast, there... they've developed an IP-based method of communicating with special software/hardware that needs to be integrated into production TVs for us to use it, to which Sony has already committed. You'll need to buy a new TV to take advantage of it, or perhaps there will be an option to buy a set-top box.

In short, this just puts a limited functionality web browser with a custom interface in your TV. For most of us geeks, it's inferior to the setups we already have... But for my mom, for example, this would be great. With GoogleTV, she can view all the LOLcats she wants from the comfort of her living room sofa.

Re:Google TV (4, Informative)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284444)

First off, they are launching (Logitech) a set top box along side the Sony TV.

Secondly, I'd suggest actually looking into it. It looks quite powerful and packs a lot more than I think you're giving credit for. It's not just a browser on the TV... Check this out: http://www.engadget.com/2010/05/20/live-from-the-google-i-o-2010-day-2-keynote/ [engadget.com]

Re:Google TV (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284600)

Read through your link, and read some other reviews earlier. OK, I'll admit it's more than just a browser on the TV. It's also a DVR.

Seriously, it's just a browser + DVR + custom interface. Woohoo.

The key here is that it will likely prompt major sites to redesign their content for their interface, which might make it actually more useful than s-video-out.

Re:Google TV (4, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284852)

If it's really open, you'll be able to take out the ads. Not that such behavior is desirable from their PoV of course, but if a user can't do it, then the process will have to be hopelessly crippled and closed at some point. So we'll see about this "open source."

Re:Google TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284862)

Get a better TV. Modern devices will real your pirated mkvs straight from an NTFS or FAT32 external USB drive.

You can forget rolling your own TV firmware. This will be clear tivoisation. But then why bother? TVs will play your wares, Android will allow applications. The biggest issue will be the limited memory and storage on the TV.

Re:Google TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32285136)

Modern devices will real your pirated mkvs

Modern posters will real their sentences before hitting Submit.

Mainstream (4, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284122)

Probably 90% of people on Slashdot have a computer hooked up to their TV, one way or another. But more mainstream options are still limited to things like AppleTV. Hopefully this Google offering helps make the usability level low enough that the technologically challenges masses will start to get some of the same benefits. Maybe it will hurt the entrenched content providers enough and provide enough of a market that we will be able to purchase shows ala carte at reasonable prices over the internet; without all the middle men taking our money.

Re:Mainstream (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284354)

Probably 90% of people on Slashdot have a computer hooked up to their TV, one way or another.

Define "a computer." Most DVRs contain pretty much all the components of a modern day computer ... even those distributed by Cox or Comcast.

Re:Mainstream (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284398)

And they are crippled to hell and back. They are about as much a computer as an ipad is.

Re:Mainstream (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32285012)

Well then they are a computer. They just aren't "your" computer. An iPad, hell an iPhone, is a computer. It is just Apple's computer and not yours. Same with a DVR. If the OP didn't mean DVRs in his 90% number then he was smoking crack.

Re:Mainstream (3, Informative)

yurtinus (1590157) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285268)

Oh what we would give for a -1 Pedantic moderation...

In the given context he pretty clearly means "general purpose computer" versus a special purpose device. Of course, who am I to argue with geeks and our need to be right about *something* regardless how little anybody else cares. Obviously I cared enough to respond... :P

Re:Mainstream (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284408)

Define "a computer." Most DVRs contain pretty much all the components of a modern day computer ... even those distributed by Cox or Comcast.

Computer - Noun: Not an abacus or a calculator or Data from Star Trek. A PC type device that allows normal people to surf the Web as well as some other generic functions. Not an appliance specifically locked down by your cable company to make sure you can't use any other devices with it or do anything really useful they don't approve of.

Re:Mainstream (3, Informative)

diegocg (1680514) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284382)

Well, googletv is able to do more things than what I do with my computer hooked up to my TV. You can google for tv shows, choose the best choice, press a button, and googletv will sintonize the channel automatically (or show a GUI to record the show in the future). Goodbye, channel numbers! I don't know if there're other "media centers" that can do this, but it looked pretty amazing to me.

Re:Mainstream (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284424)

Lots of stuff does much of that.

Clicker.com is great for finding the locations of shows online.

Re:Mainstream (2, Interesting)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284836)

Well, googletv is able to do more things than what I do with my computer hooked up to my TV.

Really?

You can google for tv shows, choose the best choice, press a button, and googletv will sintonize the channel automatically (or show a GUI to record the show in the future).

I don't know what "sintonize" means. Are you reverting to a native tongue? Anyway, guessing by the context, there are a number of applications for computers that do exactly that sort of thing, especially if you're using your computer with a tuner card.

Goodbye, channel numbers!

I said "goodbye" to both channel numbers and channel names many years ago. My computer has long recommended TV programs and others I searched for or just added to my regular rotation. Who knows when something is on, or what channel and who cares? Although lately, I've abandoned cable TV altogether. Between Netflix (with watch it now piped to the TV) and online TV from the network, Hulu, and independent creators, there is plenty to watch without paying an extra bill.

Re:Mainstream (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284978)

I'm guessing sintonize is actually syntonize. It's often used in French to explain "changing channels to" certain content.

Re:Mainstream (1)

Dracker (1323355) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284406)

What does this do that a WIndows 7 HTPC doesn't, though? If you're talking about ease of use, the only thing I have to do on my win7 box is press a button on my remote and Windows Media Center pops up. Yes, I had to buy a WMC-friendly remote that came with a USB receiver. I still don't think this is hard. In fact, the only thing that's "hard" about my setup is that most people don't know you can even do that. They don't know that you can hook a computer to a TV, they don't know WMC exists, and they don't know that you can get a remote for the computer. Astute readers will notice that I said nothing about TV tuners. I don't use one. Comcast gave me a cable box for live TV and DVR features. I just use the computer to stream Netflix and play Blu-Ray/DVD.

Re:Mainstream (1)

Itninja (937614) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284504)

It's even easier if you have an XBox360 integrated with the W7MC. And, BTW, your cable box is a tuner, albeit a digital one. I use a TiVo which has Netflix streaming built-in.

Re:Mainstream (1)

damien_kane (519267) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285096)

...your cable box is a tuner, albeit a digital one. I use a TiVo which has Netflix streaming built-in.

I think he meant that he doesn't use the built-in ATSC digital tuner that is incorporated into most modern HDTVs today.

Re:Mainstream (2, Insightful)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284880)

In fact, the only thing that's "hard" about my setup is that most people don't know you can even do that. They don't know that you can hook a computer to a TV, they don't know WMC exists, and they don't know that you can get a remote for the computer.

Well not knowing you can do it, not having an extra computer, not knowing where to buy a cheap computer that can hook up to the TV, not knowing how to configure the computer to display on the TV, etc. If you know what you're doing and are a geek, of course you integrate your computer and TV. For everyone else there needs to be a plug and play pre-configured system for them, like what Google is offering.

What they need to do (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284812)

Is get it on Blu-ray players. That is the way thing seems to be going for the mass market now. It is uncommon to see a Blu-ray player without a net connection since they need firmware updates for retarded copy protection reasons and BD-Live needs net access. Well, the companies figured out that since their players can decode video and get on the net, they could also play video from the net. You can get Netflix, Vudu and such right to your Blu-ray player.

If Google can get on that, it'll be a real win for them. Someone goes and buys the small-disc movie player (since Blu-ray players also play DVDs) and it comes with Google. People like Google, so they use it.

Re:What they need to do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32285274)

One problem: someone has to actually buy the Blu-ray players.

This would be as successful a strategy as popularizing some 1980s equivalent by having it built into every Laserdisc player.

Meh (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284206)

Until I get better internet service, it is a moot point. I don't see AT&T or Comcast (Xfinity) helping Google here.

I do look forward to Google (or someone) getting fiber into my city, and to my door. Yeah, Comcast has fiber running right under my driveway, but getting it that extra 90 ft seems impossible right now.

Re:Meh (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284876)

What'll you bet that Comcast tries to sabotage this clandestinely, gets caught, and shoves the whole net neutrality debate onto center stage?

I want it on my mobile device (1)

Glarimore (1795666) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284228)

I want Google TV streamed to my mobile device, not just the ability to use my mobile device to control Google on my TV.

Apple TV App Store (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284236)

This is all well and good until Apple adds the App Store to the Apple TV Platform.

Networks (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284242)

But what will the TV Networks and Cable Providers do about it? Cell phone companies have slaughtered Android and TV networks/cable providers think that even though you are -paying- for TV you still need to be shown tons and tons of ads. So the question remains whether this will remain untouched or if it will be corrupted like Android has been by the TV networks and cable providers?

Re:Networks (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284358)

How have the cell phone companies slaughtered android?

I have a droid, I seem to be missing nothing and the moment a 2.2 rom for it drops I will be installing that.

Re:Networks (2, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284454)

In a lot of ways, while Verizon (oddly enough) has been pretty outgoing in embracing Android and not screwing with its customer's devices, AT&T doesn't let you install non-market apps, adds your phone with unusable bloatware that isn't removable, changes the default search engine to Yahoo! and generally takes out any open-ness of Android (see http://www.pcworld.com/article/191036/motorola_backflip_on_atandt_not_the_full_android_experience.html [pcworld.com] and note that AT&T has been heavily promoting the Backflip and it is their only Android phone).

Plus carrier's reluctance to letting you tether with your phone even though it doesn't affect the network any more at all (and seriously, you are paying $20-30 a month for crappy internet, the least they could do is let you use it whenever)

And I also believe that it is the carriers that make the Android phones be locked because the phones Google sells directly (Dev phone, Nexus One) are already rooted out of the box.

Re:Networks (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284628)

I am tethering just fine. I use Azilink for this.

Buying a phone from AT&T is going to be just like that. They can't have any phone outshining their iPhone can they?

There are some phones that also do not allow unsigned roms, my advice is simply not to buy one of those phones. For this simple reason if I was in europe I would not buy the milestone, same phone as droid but requires signed boot images.

Re:Networks (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284754)

Well yes, but it still stands of an example of networks screwing up Android. The entire point of Android was to unleash the power that was in a cell phone without being tied to expensive and stupid software. Carriers have consistently tried to remove the entire point of Android by limiting what their phones can do.

Re:Networks (1)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284464)

What your television subscription pays for is all the hardware and power it takes to get the signal to your facility. What the advertisers pay for is the content creation.

Re:Networks (2, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284566)

So, let me get this right, even though I've already paid a large sum of money (more than enough to cover the hardware and the 20 feet of cable needed to go from the sidewalk to my house), it still costs $30 a month to get the signal to my house!? I think I could run Cat 5 cable and stream things from a small server to a neighborhood for less than that and that isn't even including the economies of scale with a large cable company such as Comcast.

Re:Networks (3, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284660)

What your television subscription gets you is tons of channels you do not want to watch and commercials on the ones you do want to watch. This is why I dropped cable and use clicker.com to find shows online to watch. If I am going to watch commercials I might as well not pay for the privilege.

What the networks will do is sell their bandwidth (1)

CdBee (742846) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284576)

The radio frequencies reserved for transmitted television and the satellites used for Sat TV can be deployed to far more useful purposes once TV's deployed off to glass fibre and DSL

Like being able to watch hi-def music videos on your phone wherever in the world you are at the same time as backing up your latest phonecam shots to the cloud...

Boxee (1, Interesting)

ZHaDoom (65485) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284248)

Boxee is not going to be happy.

Re:Boxee (1)

ihxo (16767) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284390)

One company, one search engine, one OS, multiple hardware vendors. That's the future.

Re:Boxee (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284500)

No, no; that would be evil, and as you will recall, Google's not evil now because they're fighting Apple and siding with Adobe to bring the joy that is Flash to mobile phones everywhere.

Apple, meanwhile, is evil because they control their platforms closely, unlike every other hardware vendor on earth, and because they support h264 which is closed and patented, unlike Theora/WebM which is great which is open and totally has no patent risks associated with it.

Re:Boxee (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285040)

Google and Adobe will gang up against Apple. Then, Google will plunge the knife in Adobe's back after Apple's mobile users leave in droves.

Enemy of an enemy is not friend etc.

no thanks (0, Troll)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284342)

you lost me at "Adobe"

Re:no thanks (2, Insightful)

dward90 (1813520) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284736)

90% or more of internet video (99.999% if you count porn) would be unusable without Adobe on board. The entire point of the project is to combine internet and television content into the same package. Without Adobe, Google TV is little more than a glorified DVR.

Link? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284372)

The link in the story goes to someplace called hothardware. Where's the link to google tv? Ok, here http://www.google.com/tv [google.com].

US-only or international? (1)

aclarke (307017) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284418)

It sounds great. However, there's no mention yet about whether it will be US-only, or if/when there will be an international rollout. I can't watch Hulu in Canada, I can't use Netflix, I can't use a cablecard, and I have to presume that, at least at first, I won't be able to use Google TV.

OK, I CAN use Hulu in Canada if I trick them into thinking I'm in the US, but that's not quite the same.

Re:US-only or international? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284672)

Logitech's detail page says that it is US only:

Q: What will I need to make it work?

A: All you need is a broadband Internet connection and a TV with an HDMI input. To take full advantage of the content search, you’ll need a satellite or cable set-top box with an HDMI output as well. And, for now, you’ll need to reside in the United States.

http://www.logitech.com/en-us/1007/7140?WT.ac=gtv|7099|BannerGetTheDetails

Google is getting too big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284426)

Am I the only one who thinks Google is getting too big. They've got their fingers in every pie imaginable. What's next? The Google Car?

I don't like it when one company is so powerful they have almost no competition, and in search, unfortunately, Google have no competition. When are we going to realise that we are letting corporations take over. Colour me stupid all you wish, but I'm starting to distance myself from Google and its offerings.

Re:Google is getting too big (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284476)

So I assume you did not use a windows computer to post that?

At least google wins legitimately, simply no search engine is as good as google. Unlike what Microsoft has done and continues to do to ensure their monopoly.

Re:Google is getting too big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284544)

So I assume you did not use a windows computer to post that?

At least google wins legitimately, simply no search engine is as good as google. Unlike what Microsoft has done and continues to do to ensure their monopoly.

Actually, no... I use a computer running Debian Linux. I have no use for MS software and haven't for going on 12 years.

Re:Google is getting too big (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284902)

Google has lots of competetion in every area they're in, including search. When you're selling $5,000 Caddilacs and everybody else is selling $50,000 Pintos, you deserve your sales. They didn't get where they are by selling crappy products using underhanded tactics like Microsoft did, they did it with a quality product.

I assume you'd say the same thing about Pepsico [wikipedia.org]?

PepsiCo owns 5 different billion-dollar brands. These are Pepsi, Tropicana, Frito-Lay, Quaker, and Gatorade. The company owns many other brands as well.

Other U.S. carbonated soft drinks, including Mountain Dew, Crush, Mug Root Beer, Sierra Mist, Tropicana Twister Soda and Frawg, 7 Up (Globally, outside the USA) Other U.S. beverages, including Aquafina (Flavor Splash, Alive, and Twist/Burst), Tava, Dole, Gatorade, Izze, AMP Energy, Propel Fitness Water, SoBe, Quaker Milk Chillers, and Tropicana

Beverages marketed outside the U.S.: Alvalle, Concordia, Copella, Evervess, Fiesta, Frui'Vita, Fruko, H2OH!, Ivi, Junkanoo, Kas, Loóza, Manzana Corona, Manzanita Sol, Mirinda, Paso de los Toros (drink), Radical Fruit, San Carlos, Schwip Schwap, Shani, Teem, Triple Kola, and Yedigun.

Frito-Lay brands: Baken-ets, Barcel, Bocabits, Cheese Tris, Cheetos, Chester's, Chizitos, Churrumais, Cracker Jack, Crujitos, Doritos, Fandangos, Fritos, Funyuns, Gamesa, Go Snacks, James' Grandma's Cookies, Hamka's, Lay's, Miss Vickie's, Munchies, Munchos, Nik Naks, Ollie's Meat Snacks, Quavers, Rold Gold, Ruffles, Rustler's Meat Sticks, Sabritas, Sabritones, Sandora, Santitas, Smartfood, The Smith's Snackfood Company, Sonric's, Stacy's Pita Chips, Sun Chips, Tor-tees, Kurkure, Tostitos, Walkers, and Wotsits

Quaker Oats brands: Aunt Jemima, Cap'n Crunch, Chewy Granola bars, Coqueiro, Crisp'ums, Cruesli, FrescAvena, King Vitaman, Life, Oatso Simple, Quake, Quisp, Rice-A-Roni, and Spudz
In 2007, Nooyi spent $1.3 billion on healthier-alternative brands like Naked Juice, a California maker of soy drinks and organic juice.

In 2010 PepsiCo launched Sting Energy Drink (carbonated) in some Asian countries including Pakistan, Philippines & Malaysia.

Go "Bing" for that and see what I mean. BTW, I hope I offended your employer with this comment, Mr. Balmer. Now put the chair down and chill. Damned AC astroturfers...

What's the point? (1)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284622)

I listened to the Google I/O keynote this morning, and i didn't really hear about any compelling features that couldn't be reproduced by a good A/V switch and a line in from my PC to the TV. They did make some crack about how previous attempts at internet TV failed as soon as they required the user to switch inputs since most of them didn't know how to get back to regular TV (certainly a rather cynical view) but i'm not sure how it will benefit anyone who's technically proficient enough to handle normal input switching.

Re:What's the point? (2, Insightful)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284886)

I suspect the point will be efficiency and convenience, which will be true for technophobes and technophiles alike.

Think of Google search. "All" it did was make finding things more efficient--but that represented a dramatic improvement in the experience of using the web. Or Gmail--we all had email beforehand, but it provided a much better interface. (Obviously not everyone will agree that the Gmail interface is good, but my point is just that lots of people do like that interface, and thus switched to Gmail.)

If GoogleTV just makes it simpler/more-efficient to watch TV, then that's a sufficient improvement. That is "the point". The idea seems to be that instead of deciding "I want to watch this show at some point, better set it to record on my DVR" or deciding "Oh, that show is starting soon, better head to my TV" or "that show I like is on Hulu, I think, let me go find it"... the GoogleTV will deal will all those details. You will just type in the name of the show you want to watch, and it will get that show for you (either scheduling the DVR, or switching to the channel, or loading the appropriate website, or whatever). This frees the user from having to navigate the arcane TV listings (which are, even in this day and age, just a numerical list! ... and one that changes on occasion!), remembering which shows are on which websites, or even remembering what time a given show plays. They just tell the device "these are the shows I like watching" and it takes care of the rest.

One can immediately think of other useful things such a box could do (auto-loading the next episode if available, recommending new shows based on ones you already like, etc.). Of course these are all things that the user could do themselves with some effort. But the idea is to reduce the effort, and make the user experience better. (Really, that's what all of technology is: mechanizing labor, automating tedious tasks, hiding away complexity... in a sense these all amount to refining a person's user experience with respect to a given task/action.)

Of course I have no idea if GoogleTV will do all of this in a smooth and effective way. It might suck. But there is at least the potential to come up with something useful. Something that most people would indeed like to have...

Re:What's the point? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285172)

Clicker handles the which shows are on which websites already. I don't have cable so no channels for me.

Java already does this... (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284626)

How is this different from the hundreds of millions of installed Java embeded hardware platforms already in the market?

Re:Java already does this... (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285232)

Probably not all that different, but your position basically echoes that of so many people who said of Google's original product (t's search engine): "How is this different from Lycos/Yahoo/Excite/AltaVista?".

The answer: at it's base level, it's not different. HOWEVER, Google has a habit of taking things that have all been done before, and doing it RIGHT.

I hope the devices have good tuners (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284698)

for over the air TV. I had to get cable at my new place because the tuners in the TV's don't pick up most broadcast over rabbit ears. My Sharp Aquos has the worst reception. EyeTV dongle the best.
You never see tuner quality mentioned in the reviews.

Re:I hope the devices have good tuners (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285190)

What is on over the air you cannot get online?
That you would actually want to watch.

Hey Google, there's no TV worth searching for (2, Insightful)

leftie (667677) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284762)

Google stated today that too many people are having trouble deciding what to watch. Wrong.

People are watching "monkees washing cats" videos on You Tube because that's more intriguing than the crap on broadcast TV.

All for Flash (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284816)

They're all pushing for Flash, even Google.

Re:All for Flash (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284960)

too right - and apple are going to get a pounding right in the arse!!!

this is fucking great stuff!!!

and? (2, Insightful)

bugi (8479) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284834)

It looks like the networks will still schedule all the shows I like at the same time on the same night, forcing me to choose which ones to ignore. Don't be stupid. Let me decide what to watch and when; then we can talk.

How about this? Schedule first-run when your generic focus groups tell you, then leave it available so real people can watch whenever we get around to it. I have better things to do than schedule my life around you.

Re:and? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285222)

Stop using cable or get a DVR. I use online video and never had to deal with oh noes two shows on at the same time. In 2010 that should not be an issue.

HDMI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284860)

So how does open source work with HDMI?

See the video. Is the /. community now accepting HDMI when it's from Google?

Best Buy (4, Funny)

supersloshy (1273442) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284878)

Best Buy

I instantly thought this was a horrible idea right here. I can't trust anything they do. After all of the Internet horror stories, stories from my relatives, and even in my own family about the terrible things that can happen when Best Buy is involved, I can't trust them with this.

Best Buy employee: This is the all new Google TV. It allows real-time web 2.0 synergy between your living room and the Internet.
Me: Um... what?
Employee: It's like TV but combined with the Internet with apps and stuff.
Me: Awesome! How much does it cost?
Employee: We sell the regular model by itself for X dollars, but that isn't certified with us.
Me: Oh, it isn't?
Employee: Yeah, it might not work with your TV unless you pay $150 more for our Geek Squad(tm) service. They set it up, put apps on it for you, and make sure everything works.
Me: I'm a computer nerd, I can set it up myself. Thanks anyways!
Employee: If you buy it without our service then you don't get [insert feature here]. You either have to use Geek Squad(tm) or buy this $100 gold-plated cable.
Me: *looks at box* But the box says that I get that feature without having to buy anything.
Employee: Yeah, but you need these cables to have it look decent.
Me: I have some old ones at home I can use. Thank you for helping!
Employee: We're out of regular Google TVs.
Me: ...Say what?
Employee: We only have our pre-specialized models. They have everything already set up by Geek Squad(tm) so you don't have to bother.
Me: I'd much rather bother.
Employee: Trust me, it's horrible without our service. Are you sure?
Me: *sigh* Fine, I'll buy it.
Employee: Thank you for shopping at Best Buy!
*I get home and set it up*
Me: Okay, ready to try out my new Google TV! Wait... what's this? The box never said anything about "free trials" to all of these programs. Why is the interface so slow? Oh, it's all of these other things that came pre-installed. Of course. Why is this acting all weird? *looks in settings* These settings aren't what the defaults were in the manual! Ugh... *Google TV crashes* What the crap! Okay, screw this, I'm returning it.
*goes back to best buy*
Me: Excuse me, I'd like to return this obviously faulty Google TV.
Employee: Did you install it?
Me: Yes, how else would I know it is faulty?
Employee: It seems you used unqualified cables. I'm afraid you can't return it.
Me: Unqualifi- No, no, no! You can't void my ability to return this because I didn't use those $100 cables! That doesn't make sense!
Employee: Rules are rules, sir. Have a nice day.

I could go on but you can imagine the horror.

Re:Best Buy (1)

ndavis (1499237) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285064)

This is why I purchase everything with a credit card. Mine has a 30 day return policy built into it and when I hear "You can't return this" I say well that is fine I will call up the credit card company and have them cancel the purchase. Typically this works very well and I end up getting it credited.

This also works when you purchase an item and they do not tell you about a restocking fee if it is opened when you go to return said item (or in my case lie and say there isn't one).

quick question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#32284916)

can anyone tell me the likelihood that I'll be able to get this working on my ipad...?

Apple TV, OOooppppsss (1)

sir lox elroy (735636) | more than 2 years ago | (#32284996)

I have had a theory. Apple TV didn't take off like the iPod as people instantly saw the additional prices and the lack of backward compatibility, AKA a tuner and DVR. The iPod, people think they are going to rip their existing CDs and so the only price they saw at first is the iPod price, then they see what all they can buy and start to buy more. Apple TV had no backwards compatibility, and thus people had to look for where their shows were going to come from and saw the additional price before the purchase, that along with the lack of a tuner for local TV and DVR at least meant most people did not want to adopt it. Google sounds like they might be doing it semi right. We can only hope.

There's so many ways they could do this right... (3, Insightful)

ProppaT (557551) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285020)

And the first of these is by getting in bed with the major cable networks and offering an ala carte subscription service. I can get the big 4 over the air. If I can stream Comedy Central, Sci Fi, Cartoon Network, and Discovery I'd gladly pay them a little of the money that I was paying for hundreds of channels I didn't care about with cable. What do you say, Google? You're the only one who has the backbone to even attempt this. I'll even buy a stupidly overpriced box to buy into it. My only concern is that they'll pack so much content into this that I'll never want to turn off my Plasma...and that would get kinda pricey.

Re:There's so many ways they could do this right.. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285262)

Pretty much anything you want from the first three is already online for free. Why would you pay for it?

Fuck with Apple (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#32285214)

Part of this initiative (IMHO) serves the purpose of fucking with Apple: it will be Flash based, hence out.of-limits to iPod, iPhone and iPad.

If Google TV becomes hugely popular, the joke's on Apple.

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