Google TV is a sort of IPTV/universal interface hybrid. As well as providing a massive amount of online content for your TV, Google TV combines your cable STB, DVD player, Xbox, TiVo, sound system and just about anything else you have plugged in to your TV.
Bringing all of your media forms together and splicing them with the internet gives you a luxuriously hassle-free way to search for entertainment. If you’re after a specific movie just put the title in to the search bar and it will scan everything in seconds. You’ll get an easy menu of results from your recorded programs, movies saved on your computer, movies available online, movies available on any internet subscriptions (such as Apple TV, Netflix or Zune), YouTube results, Podcast results etc. It’s really easy to spot the result you’re after as well. You won’t be intimidated by a hoard of useless search results crowding your screen as some other IPTV services are wont to do.
Integrating all your media also means you can control them all with the same remote. With Google TV there are 3 real options for remotes.
SONY has designed a 2-handed controller, similar to a PlayStation controller, which has a QWERTY keypad on it as well as just about any other function you could possibly think of. Logitech has released a lightweight QWERTY keyboard that sits on the lap. The keyboard has a trackpad as well as traditional controls such as play, pause, rewind etc.
The best and probably most exciting option is your phone. If you own an Android smartphone or iPhone you can use your phone as a remote control. That means no more searching for the remote to turn the TV on, just pull your mobile out of your pocket and off you go. The fact that modern smartphones operate on touchscreens is a great bonus here. You can scroll through screen after screen of buttons for different services, meaning you can have a tonne of functionality in a very small space.
Google TV does not require a contract. It is a one-time purchase that links all of your other entertainment technologies together while bringing the freedom of the internet to your TV.