With the recent announcement of Google TV, closely followed by Sony announcing their new series of HDTV sets with Google TV built-in, the buzz around the agency is not surprisingly, all about internet TV.
This isn’t the first time a TV-connected computer has been attempted; Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation both dominate this front room experience (albeit more reputedly in the gaming world). There are more attempts in the archives that never made it to mainstream too but most notably was the recent Apple TV (basically a simple media streamer with access to on-demand television and movie rentals) and superseding all of that of course was the Microsoft Media Center.
So what does everyone think of Google’s attempt? There seem to be a few opinions:
On one side of the fence are the group that feel Google TV really isn’t much more elaborate than plugging your computer into a TV, which they deem neither ‘clever nor desirable’.
“I can’t think of anything more boring or anti-social than having to watch somebody else browse the web. And if you need to use a keyboard to find content then I think you’ve failed.”
Anon: Technical Architect
Fair enough I suppose this concept doesn’t particularly take me by storm either.
On the other side are those that feel Google TV will outshine Apple because of their attitude towards what they deliver…
“It will all be about the content offered to viewers. Whichever service/device provides the best content will win out and since Apple probably won’t put porn on their offering my money is on Google.”
Anon: (Another) Technical Architect
By using that quote I’m possibly opening this post up to a digression however, a valid point; Content is still King.
Generally overall I think there is a resistance (as always) to the latest technology trend, people want a cinematic HD widescreen experience at home and don’t necessarily relate that to surfing the web. In this generation though I think that’s naive, you only have to look at the number of people who have their laptop out or are tweeting from their phone and so on, all whilst watching the box…
I’m sitting on the fence (for now), it could make multi-tasking simpler but then, it could reduce my in-home cinematic experience. I like the idea of being able to combine the web and TV experience, but only if I’ve got control of the remote… I’d be most annoyed if the other half decided to load The Gadget Show halfway through my Monday date with my TV boyfriend from Spooks!