Google Due To Launch TV Service In UK

Nearly two years after it launched in the U.S., Google TV is preparing to launch its service in the UK in the hope that the service will fare better overseas. The launch comes after Sony and Google announced a tie-up service that will see Google’s interactive TV service made available outside the U.S. for the first time.

According to The Telegraph,  the Sony-branded GS7 set-top box will launch first in Britain on July 16th and then later launched in Canada, Australia, and a number of European and South American countries including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Mexico and the Netherlands.

The feature now includes special versions of YouTube, Google Play Twitter, and other websites have now been created for the TV interface. The YouTube version will feature live broadcasts of concerts from across the world, premium music videos and films. Google is hopeful that users will rent films through the new service. Google’s Chrome browser is built into the new box, which also features a remote control that has a touchpad on one side and a full keyboard on the other. Alternatively a smartphone or tablet can be also used as a remote via the free Media Remote app

On the Google TV blog, Google TV’s head of global distribution Suveer Kothari wrote about the possibilities of the service:

“In the U.K. you’ll be able to pop live TV into the background while you read up on The Guardian’s website with Chrome, catch up on the latest episode of EastEnders on the BBC iPlayer, view Lauren Luke’s latest make-up tips on YouTube, and choose from the hundreds of apps optimized for TV in Google Play.”

It’s hard to say whether Google TV will work in different territories. Normally, the U.S. presents a good indicator as to how successful a service will be and it’s hard to see how European and South American audiences will embrace the service any differently. Also, the majority of manufacturers neglect the fact that you will be viewing the TV from afar so any text heavy sites like Google or The Guardian would be difficult to navigate as the text size would be too small to read. The specialised remote, from first glance, at least shows that Google put some thought into making navigation easier, but testing it

But considering that companies like Apple, Samsung and LG are trying to release their own Web TV product, Google perhaps needed to launch its product before them if it was to have any chance of making Google TV a success. It failed before, but whether it is second time lucky depends on whether Europe and South America want to embrace Google’s answer.

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