At the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year, Google showed off a prototype device to a select few. Shown in secret, the device was a set-top box similar to an Apple TV. Whether or not this design was scrapped or is still in development remains to be seen.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the device was demonstrated by former Google executive, Andy Rubin. The device ran Google’s Android operating system. It allowed streaming of YouTube videos, TV shows and movies, and had Google Hangouts video conferencing built-in. Through the device, users could also use Android apps and games, as well as “potentially” accessing media services like Netflix and Pandora.
Google has declined comment at this point. But with its Chromecast streaming HDMI dongle fresh out of the gate, it’s clear that the company’s making a major play for the living room. Also, rumors of Google’s work on an Android powered gaming console hint at more big screen focused strategy.
Maybe the box Google revealed at CES was just a prototype that’s since been discontinued, but it certainly hints at Google’s larger designs on a central entertainment hub. Of course, Google’s answer to the Apple TV and Roku could still be in the works and the Hangouts support would give it an extra leg up on the competition.
What do you think?