Google TV has been available in the U.S. since October of last year, but it hasn’t exactly been a huge success — fighting mixed reviews and ugly sales figures. But despite this, Google still has plans to launch the service in other territories, and according to one report, it will be gracing living rooms in the U.K. within the next 6 months.
British broadsheet The Telegraph reports that the service will be announced for the U.K. at the Edinburgh Television Festival — which begins today and lasts until August 28 — by none other that Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt.
For those of you that aren’t familiar with the service, Google TV is a set-top box that provides that uses the company’s Android operating system — along with a version of its Chrome web browser — to provide you with online content alongside traditional channels on your TV. With Google TV installed, you can access the web, YouTube, Netflix, Facebook, Twitter and more from your living room — no computer required.
That’s all nice and fancy, but here in the U.K., we’ve had these features for a while. Many high-end TVs now feature Smart TV functionality, allowing you to browse the web, download apps, and watch online content; while we also have our Apple TVs, PlayStation 3s and Xbox 360s to access additional content from the web.
But let’s not rule out Google TV’s success in the U.K. just yet. TechRadar notes a number of changes within Google that could mean the service surprises us all:
The first was the acquisition of SageTV in the UK, a company that specialises in providing software for media servers.
The biggest change of all, however, is Google buying Motorola – alongside its massive pot of patents it has expertise in IPTV infrastructure and already has a hand in making set-top boxes.
I’m actually looking forward to the launch of Google TV here in the U.K. Ever since it launched across the Atlantic, I’ve been keen to try it out. I think the service could easily trounce the Apple TV over here, which is lacking a key feature like Netflix, and for those of us that can’t afford high-end Smart TVs, this is a great alternative.
Are you excited about Google TV?