Google TV Coming This Fall Says CEO
Google plans to launch its Google TV service, which will bring Web services to TVs, this autumn, according to Google CEO Eric Schmidt.
Schmidt revealed the news during his keynote speech at the IFA electronics convention in Berlin. He said it would be a free service, much like the majority of services Google offers. The launch this fall will be for the U.S. only, but Google TV will be available worldwide next year.
Schmidt emphasized that Google will only be providing the service that brings the TV and the Internet together; other companies will be responsible for what consumers can access through it.
"We will work with content providers, but it is very unlikely that we will get into actual content production," Schmidt told journalists after his speech.
Schmidt said the objective was to bring full Internet browsing to the living room TV, something other manufacturers have tried with limited success. Navigation with a TV remote has been one of the biggest hurdles, as well as integration with current TV programming. Most manufacturers have settled with including apps or "widgets" that pipe in information from popular sites such as Flickr, YouTube, Twitter and weather services.
Google's approach will be to fully meld the Internet with the TV and allow for complete interactivity.
Logitech has already released a series of commercials for its TV that will integrate with Google TV, and Sony, LG and Samsung have all voiced varying levels of commitment to releasing similar hardware in the near future.
Apple announced a similar service, Apple TV , recently, though Google's service will come built-in to TVs rather than in a separate box like the Apple TV. While Google doesn't make the TVs or the content, the company is likely focused on another source of revenue: advertisements. Google is already the king of advertising on the Internet, and expanding into the TV market would open up many new opportunities for the company.