Google to take the wraps off Android set-top box at I/O?


Recent reports suggest Google might launch a new television set-top box at its Google I/O developer conference, today, in San Francisco.

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, citing sources familiar with the matter, the company is all set to take the wraps off its new Android powered set top box during the Wednesday event to take on Amazon’s Fire TV, Roku and Apple’s Apple TV.

The report said that although Google’s new device will carry another company’s brand, it will be powered by the company’s new Android TV software designed to play movies, games and other content on televisions. The interesting thing is that users will be able to control the set top box using their Android smartphones, tablets or other handheld devices.

The report also suggests that Google’s television strategy will be somewhat similar to its smartphone strategy that is providing key software to hardware makers to power their devices.

This is surely not the first time Google is making an attempt to try on success in the television industry. The company has been offering Google TVs in collaboration with device makers including Logitech, Vizio, Sony and Asus since 2010. In 2012, Google also unveiled the Nexus Q, its own streaming-media player that never made it to the mass market.

The only Google device which marked its presence in the television industry is the $35 Chromecast, a dongle that allows users to stream Internet videos onto their TVs using their smart phones and tablets through the chrome browser.

However, Google is yet to comment on the report.