It is safe to say that the initial launch of Google TV was a complete failure. The launch got off to a shaky start; its first demonstration was riddled with delays and network interference, and some said that the demo simply foreshadowed things to come. Probably looking at the advancements rival Apple was making with its Apple TV, Google believed that there was a very viable market for internet connected cable-set boxes.
Google partnered with Logitech and Sony to create and sell the Google TV products. But as it turned out, Google may have overreached in a growing, but small market. Apple TV is probably the most popular of these set-top Bluetooth/internet enabled devices, and it is still a longshot to call the product a success. So, while Google tried to market its devices, consumers were simply not interested. Not to mention that they priced the rather ugly unit a 300 dollars, when potential customers could opt for an Apple TV or Roku at more than half the price.
The product launched in 2010 and crashed and burned by the 2011. It seemed that consumers were just not ready for it and Google wasn’t ready to launch it. The moderate success of Apple TV lies within its simplicity and ability to seamlessly connect with other devices and apps a user may older have. It can easily access application like Hulu and Netflix, and offers the iTunes Store for impulse downloads. Even still, many people still don’t understand what exactly Apple TV does. Quite frankly, Google overestimated the ability for the average consumer to change from a trusted technology like television, to something that seems complex. Logitech’s CEO Guerrino De Luca admitted so himself. “The idea that it would happen overnight in Christmas 2010 was very misguided and that also cost us dearly.”
But this new update should hold a brighter outcome, at least that’s what Google is betting on (again). TV makers Sony and Vizio introduced their Google TV set-top boxes, the NSZ-GS7 and Co-Star. The NSZ-GS7 retails at $199 and the Co-Star comes in at $100. Vizio’s Co-star seems to be the more appealing buy of the two. Unlike other set-top boxes that facilitate the internet connection into your TV; the Co-Star connects to your current cable or satellite box. And unlike before, the Google TV devices offer Amazon, Netflix, YouTube, full-screen web browsing, and the OnLive cloud gaming service. Some Android games will be made available though the app store and can be played with the touch enabled controller or available gaming remote. Things are looking much better for Google TV and hopefully this time around failure won’t be the only by-product.