Google bowed Google TV in 2010 with a good degree of fanfare -- but the service, a kind of operating system for television that combines the Web giant’s search know-how with YouTube content, never quite caught on. For one thing, most major television networks blocked their online content from streaming to Google TV. Consumers and reviewers also complained about the system being slow and expensive.
Now that Apple is widely rumored to be readying its own TV, The New York Times reports that Google is redoubling its efforts to make Google TV stick, having announced partnerships with such manufacturers as LG, Samsung, Sony and Vizio at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. LG on Monday said it would ship two new Google TV sets later this month.
Among the improvements to the new line of Google TV-powered LG televisions are a new dual-core processor to improve loading speeds as well as a so-called “Magic Remote” that allows users to control their set tops with gestures and voice search. For its part, Google says it upgraded its TV software to improve the user experience by enabling more content, improving recommendations and delivering platform and provider-agnostic search capabilities.