Google is testing Android on set-top-boxes

Posted by – March 10, 2010

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According to WSJ, Google is currently testing Android features on set-top-boxes.

It would be really nice to hear from Google what their strategy is for Android on HDTVs as well as for licencing Youtube HD access to cheap sub-$100 set-top-boxes that are based on Sigma Designs or Realtec processors, that come with Ethernet ports and which are powerful enough to stream 720p 2mbit/s or 1080p 4mbit/s from Youtube, if only they would provide an API to eventually display overlay advertising on the high bitrate videos or to charge end-users for the bandwidth through micro-payments.

I just bought the CinemaTube BV-5005 which is one of those Realtec based media streamers that should be able to strewam all contents from Youtube in up to HD but for some obscure licencing issues are not yet able to get access to the Youtube API for streaming legally. I will be posting an extensive video-review and an interview filmed at their CeBIT booth one of these next few days.

The service—which runs on TV set-top boxes using elements of Google’s Android operating system—allows users to search content from Dish as well as other Web video, like YouTube, and to personalize a lineup of shows, according to these people.

Viewers can search by typing on a keyboard, instead of using a remote control. Google hopes to link the service up with its nascent TV ad-brokering business, allowing it to target ads to individual households based on viewing and TV search data.



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