Samsung is once again coming to the rescue of an ailing Google product. The Seoul-based company has announced at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2011 in Las Vegas that they are going to release a Blu-Ray player that is compatible with Google TV, and will allow users to share functionality between the two. The Google-TV-powered Blu-Ray player will include a remote control with a complete QWERTY keyboard, according to Samsung, allowing users to easily navigate through its options.
So far, the Korean consumer electronics giant has not released any information regarding the price of the companion box. The CES was supposed to be Google TV-heavy this year, but with Google asking companies to delay the release or unveiling of several products while they work out the kinks, so far we haven’t seen what we thought we would have a month ago.
At this point, it looks as if Google TV could head in either direction for Google. With rivals like Apple and Microsoft preparing to release similar products, and a market that hasn’t fully bought in on the new internet-connected television technology, Google TV’s run has been less than impressive so far. While seeking to expand upon the content currently offered through their Google TV platform, Google’s solid working relationship with companies that are already deep in the HDTV industry should give them somewhat of a head start over Apple TV. Without more video content and specifically designed applications for Google TV, it could go the way of the Intel Viiv. The Viiv was a similar product and one of the first of its kind that was released in 2006, but was discontinued within its first year of operation because they were unable to provide enough content for their users.
The Blu-Ray set-top box that was announced at the CES by Samsung isn’t a deal breaker when it comes to Google TV, but it is a good start and serves as added functionality for a service that hopes to expand in the coming months.