LG had a number of gorgeous HDTVs on display at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and apparently we aren’t the only ones who noticed how strong LG’s next-generation televisions are. Mere rumors of an HDTV in the works from Apple has set the industry aflutter, eying apps, voice and motion controls, and the Android OS in an effort to recapture consumers’ interest ahead of whatever Apple may be planning to announce as soon as this summer. Now, a new report from Bloomberg suggests Google may be in negotiations to enter the TV space as well. Unnamed sources speaking with the business news site claim Google is currently in talks with LG to create a Google TV-powered HDTV in a partnership said to be similar to the arrangement Google had with HTC and then Samsung to build Nexus-branded smartphones. Google is also reportedly working on a Nexus tablet and with connected TVs in the spotlight this year, a Nexus TV could be a crucial next step for the Mountain View-based company. More →
Google TV continues to make a decent impact at the Consumer Electronics Show. On Wednesday, Google and OnLive announced that the company’s streaming game service was coming to Google TV devices. OnLive delivers console-quality games that are synchronized, rendered, and stored on remote servers and then are streamed over the Internet. The service launched in 2010 and is available on Windows, OS X, Android and iOS operating systems. “With OnLive, the latest high-performance video games stream just as instantly as videos or movies,” said OnLive’s chief executive Steve Perlman. As the company does with most new platforms, the service will launch as a “Viewer” on Google TV, allowing users to watch and use OnLive social features. However, OnLive is working closely with Google to enable full gameplay with gamers from around the world. Vizio will be the first manufacturer to incorporate the service into its Google TV devices. More →
There is no clear cut winner or loser at the Consumer Electronics Show but if there was, Samsung would easily be a top contender for the crown. The South Korea-based consumer electronics giant came to CES 2012 with guns blazing, showing off everything from new televisions, ultrabooks and smartphones to a revolutionary new washing machine. Yes, a washing machine. Samsung had a gigantic booth packed to the brim with cutting-edge tech, but the stars of this year’s show in our eyes were Samsung’s new Super OLED HDTVs. The only word that can possibly describe them is gorgeous. They’re unbelievably slim, incredibly bright, and they produce colors unlike anything we’ve seen on a TV before… but we’ll let the pictures do the talking. Our CES 2012 booth tour featuring Samsung follows below.
Vizio announced the company’s support for Google TV with two new set-top boxes at the Consumer Electronics Show on Tuesday. The Vizio VAP430 Stream Player picks right up where the Logitech Revue left off, and will turn any TV into a smart TV. Vizio’s second set-top box adds a Blu-ray player to the mix and looks to compete with Sony’s new Blu-ray Google TV device. The Vizio VBR430 is labeled as “one of the most advanced 3D Blu-ray players on the market,” with access to the web, apps, and the ability to play the latest Blu-ray 3D movies. Both devices include a touchpad universal remote with a QWERTY keyboard, giving consumers an easy way to navigate everything Google TV has to offer. As with Vizio’s other CES products, shipping dates and pricing will be announced at a later date. More details are available after the break. More →
The Consumer Electronics show is always a massive event for the home entertainment industry, and 2012 is shaping up to be the biggest year yet. Hundreds of companies will showcase thousands of products, but among the companies that managed to generate some real buzz ahead of the show, LG really looks like it has some gems on its hands this year. The company previewed its new nearly borderless 55-inch OLED HDTV last week and it has a few Cinema Screen 3D models with just a 1-millimeter bezel surrounding its gorgeous display panels. LG surely has plenty more gear in store for us — including at least one smartphone and next-generation Google TV devices — so hit the break to watch all the action unfold in our live coverage. More →
Google has teamed up with Marvell for the next-generation Google TV platform. Marvell’s ARMADA 1500 dual-core chipset will be featured within future products and will debut at next week’s Consumer Electronics Show. The ARMADA-based Foresight Platform is designed to deliver superior 3D video and graphics with rich audio and TV-friendly Web content. The dual-core chip will also deliver PC-like processing power with advanced cell-phone like power management for more energy efficiency. ”I believe this is a major breakthrough movement and it’s just the beginning of our bigger vision,” Marvell co-founder Wel Dai said in a statement. ”The same forces that are revolutionizing today’s television experience will transform numerous vertical applications for small businesses and large enterprises, enhancing the way we all work, connect with each other and collaborate globally.” Everyone remembers the initial launch of Google TV, especially the lackluster performance and future abandonment of the Logitech Revue, so Marvell and Google have their work cut out for them. Read on for a copy of the full press release.
After a slow first year, Google is finally looking to make a big splash with the company’s Google TV platform. The Mountain View-based firm announced Thursday that Sony, Samsung, Vizio and LG will all be manufacturing Google TV devices this year. Earlier, Marvell and Google announced that the platform would be switching from Intel chips to ARM processors, however LG’s TV will run on the company’s own L9 setup. Each company will be on hand at next week’s Consumer Electronics Show to show off their Google TV-powered hardware. More →
Certain customers who recently purchased the Logitech Revue Google TV set top box with the hope of transforming their normal TV into a web-ready smart TV have been left with nothing but disappointment. Logitech has confirmed that a small percentage of recently manufactured Revue devices were shipped with “corrupted firmware,” preventing select customers from activating their new devices. The box would drop its connection when attempting to access the company’s license agreement, leading many to originally believe it was a mere server error. Logitech has stated that there is no fix besides physically swapping an affected Revue box with a working one, however. The symptoms are fairly obvious, but users can determine whether or not they own and problematic unit conclusively by checking the unit’s MAC address. If the MAC address begins with 1C6F657, it’s likely to be affected by EULA-gate. Logitech hasn’t had a good run with Google’s first entrance into the TV market, and CEO Guerrino De Luca said recently that the failed product was a mistake that cost the company dearly. De Luca also confirmed that the company currently has no plans to follow up with a second Google TV device. More →
Logitech on Wednesday announced that it’s rolling out the latest Google TV software to its Revue Google TV product. “Some of the key developments include more entertainment choices such as access to Android Market; faster and more comprehensive search and browse capabilities; a simplified user interface, and improvements to the Logitech Media Player,” Logitech’s vice president and general manager of the digital home group, Ashish Arora explained. The Revue has largely been considered a failure for Logitech. The company’s CEO Guerrino De Luca recently remarked that the product was a “mistake” that “cost [Logitech] dearly” and that his company will not introduce a follow-up device until it is clear that Google has worked out all of the kinks in its product. More →
Samsung’s visual display division president Yoon Boo-Keun confirmed to The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday that his company plans to launch a television with Google TV software next year. The Google TV platform allows users to browse the web and interact with a television in a similar fashion as they would with a computer. However, Google TV products, such as Logitech’s Revue set-top box, have failed so miserably that Logitech’s CEO described the product as a “mistake.” It is unclear how Samsung plans to differentiate its televisions from set top boxes, which suffered from poor sales, but new Google TV software paired with Samsung’s position in the television market could help raise consumer awareness. LG will also reveal a Google TV during January’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas but Samsung said it has no plans to unveil the TV quite so soon.
Speaking during the company’s Analyst and Investor Day recently, Logitech CEO Guerrino De Luca admitted the failure of the Logitech Revue Google TV set top box. De Luca said that Logitech has “no plans to introduce another box to replace Revue” after realizing that the launch of a “beta product” was “a mistake of implementation of a gigantic nature.” Like Apple and Sony, Logitech had dreams of breathing fresh life into the television market, but combined with “miscues in EMEA” the launch ended up costing the company more than $100 million in operating profits and, despite advertising efforts with Kevin Bacon, did little to attract consumer interest. Read on for more. More →
The original Google TV products were met by lukewarm reviews at best, and according to Geek.com, the search giant is hard at work on its new Google TV 2.0 product. Developers have been joining Google’s new “Fishtank” program to get early access to tools that will allow them to create compelling new content for Google’s next attempt at entering our living rooms. Google TV 2.0 runs a barebones version of Android 3.1 (Honeycomb) and there are reportedly only 50 developers partaking in the initial Fishtank program. Fishtank includes an Intel CE4100 reference platform with a beta version of Google TV 2.0 preloaded, and a wireless keyboard. Intel’s Sodaville SoC, part of the CE4100 reference platform, also includes support for 3D gaming and Flash. Geek.com noticed a new “dual-view” feature that allows users to watch TV and use the OS at the same time; and the user interface has the same glowing-blue Tron-like effects as the tablet version of Honeycomb. Developers are said to be up in arms over the “Live TV” application on Google TV 2.0 — many want to interact with the TV interface directly, but Google isn’t allowing that just yet. Will it be enough for Google to tackle Apple TV? We’ll have to wait and see. In the meantime, another shot of the box and a couple of UI images can be seen after the break. More →
Google on Tuesday announced its first major update to the Honeycomb OS. Key feature additions in Honeycomb 3.1 include resizable home screen widgets, added support for new input devices like enhanced keyboards, mice, trackpads and even dedicated gaming controllers. Another key addition is enhanced multitasking support for more fluid transitions and reduced crashes. In addition, Honeycomb will be coming to Google TV in version 3.1 via an automatic OTA update. Among the notable Google TV-specific features is the addition of Android Market support, which will allow third-party apps to be delivered to Google TV devices just like they are on smartphones and tablets.