updated 04:35 pm EDT, Wed August 18, 2010
Google TV not very welcome at TV providers
Google is getting significant resistance from TV networks for its Google TV strategy, insiders said Wednesday. It has reportedly talked with ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC about scraping video site data and TV-ready reformatting but has so far been turned down, the WSJ wrote. Studios are allegedly worried that the info, which would help mix TV and web results, could lure customers away from more profitable traditional TV or put pirated material ahead of legitimate content.
Ambiguity may also be an issue. Google hasn't said how it plans to make money from Google TV's search results. Although not mentioned by the sources, it's not certain whether any of the studios would get a cut of search results or associated ads. Internet video ads or even TV ads themselves are considered possibilities.
The project is designed to contrast sharply with existing networked media hubs like Apple TV or Roku's Internet Player. Current hardware tries to serve as a replacement and usually requires paying for shows either individually or through a subscription. Google TV is intended as a complement to existing TV service and will talk to some set-top boxes to get TV channels and work simply as a layer on top, providing apps and web browsing as a supplement. Some devices will only have the core service, but Logitech's Revue will also serve as a media streaming hub and a means of using a smartphone as a Harmony-style universal remote.
The entire category has struggled to gain sales but may get a kick from an Apple TV sequel that could undermine Google TV before it arrives in the fall. Apple's device is rumored to cost just $99 and would have both local media streaming as well as Internet access and the App Store.