For those who have been hearing a lot about Google TV since its initial announcement during Google I/O, Google is finally launching the product with Logitech called the Revue. This time, though, they aren?t launching their own product but rather working with partners to release products using Google?s software. This solidifies what Google has wanted to do all along, they never really wanted to make a smartphone or set-top box. Here is a video that explains Google TV and how Logitech Revue uses it.
Getting back to Google TV and the Logitech Revue, the Revue consists of the box that connects to your television via HDMI[in and out]. It also has two USB ports for connecting additional devices like webcams and an RJ-45 port to enable network connectivity. Although it has a network port, the Revue still is capable of being connected to your network via Wi-Fi as well. The most important part of Google TV is its ability to connect to the internet and Google?s databases of information. Furthermore, the Revue supports wireless 802.11 a/b/g/n so, no matter what wireless router you?ve got at home, you?re covered. The only discouraging part is that the Ethernet port is only 10/100 Base-T, which we would have liked to see gigabit. Nevertheless, the Logitech Revue also has an SPDIF out plug that should enable surround sound. This surround sound should complement the already high-quality 1080P @ 60FPS signal that the Revue is capable of delivering to any HDMI 1.3a compliant TV. The Revue is capable of doing this thanks to Intel?s CE4100 SoC Atom chip that enables 1080P playback at 60 frames per second.
The reason that Logitech is selling these devices is fairly simple, Google wants to take TVs that don?t have Smart TV capabilities and give them the ability to become Smart TVs with network connectivity. And the reason they picked Logitech is because they are the leader in home theater peripherals, more specifically keyboards and mice. Many people nowadays are getting TVs with built in applications and sorting. Google TV and the Logitech Revue take this concept a step further and immerse the user into a universe of internet connected television that Microsoft only wishes they had thought of when they first introduced the concept with WEBTV. As if this weren?t enough, Logitech enables their pre-existing portfolio of products that compliment the Revue in ways that others simple cannot with the included IR Blaster and USB ports. They have a wide range of wireless keyboards, webcams, remotes and they also have a smartphone app that acts as a Logitech Harmony remote if you don?t have one.
Currently, the preorder price for the Logitech Revue is $299 for both the device and the included smart keyboard[pictured above]. For now, though, Sony and Logitech are the only companies launching today with Google TV. You can also order the device if you are a Dish Network subscriber for the discounted price of $179.