Those of you hoping for a new Nexus Player, or even just acknowledgement that Android TV exists, out of Google’s big hardware focused event today are out of luck. Like has been mostly the case for the last two years, Google has once again ignored Android TV as a thing that they make. The only mention of Android TV during the entire presentation was when discussing Google Home’s ability to “Voice Cast” and control playback on Chromecast and “any Google Cast enabled TVs, like Android TVs.” Even then, the context involved Android TV as the operating system for televisions, and not independent set top devices. It seems more evident than ever that the future of Android TV for Google is for it to become just a free OS for televisions manufacturers to use, that helps Google slowly creep into everyone’s living room.
Why in the heck didn’t they just release the Chromecast Ultra with Android TV, since it has built-in Google Cast support? Wouldn’t that have been the smarter “two birds with one stone” approach? Motivating devs to support both aspects of the platform from the sell of one dongle…and further pushing Android TV front and center?
Maybe common sense isn’t so common anymore?
I agree. A dongle with no remote that I have to control with my phone is a no buy.
My guess is the cost, they probably believe it will sell regardless and by having it stream only they can keep costs relatively low.
It would also avoid the association with pirated kodi based streams that the fire stick has.
That said, an Android TV stick is something id like to see.
It does seem like Google is more interested in Android TV as an OS for smart TVs (Sony, Phillips, Sharp, etc.), although if it really continues to advance in that realm and is able to increase support from app providers, I see no reason why Android TV won’t still be available for third-party hardware makers to use in set-top boxes like the new Mi Box or the Nvidia Shield TV. The question, though, is whether smart TVs will be enough to give Android TV staying power without strong-selling STBs. Will be interesting to see how the Mi Box sells. Since it’s only $69, the same as the new Chromecast Ultra, it would seem to be the smarter choice…
Why did the Mi Box have to wait for this event? I wonder if they were hoping for a mention. Walmart has had the Mi Boxes for like two weeks now, holding them.
Also, I heard Nvidia Shield is no longer on the Google Store site. Not sure what that means.
A new Shield passed through the FCC in August. Should be any time now.
I had been considering the Mi Box but have now ruled that out since it doesn’t (at least at launch) support auto-rate switching to 24p/24Hz or run the sideloaded Amazon Video app. The Shield TV does both, and of course a lot more (Plex server, etc.). So now I’m waiting to see what the updated Shield TV brings. Really hoping it adds Dolby Vision. Given that the Chromecast Ultra debuted today with Dolby Vision (the first streaming device to offer it), maybe we’ll see it in the new Shield TV, along with the improved voice remote and controller, and hopefully the rumored official Amazon Video app.
I too am waiting for the new Shield. I would like them to release a cheaper one with a remote for non gamers like me.
I find it oddly amusing that you linked the droid-life.com article about the Shield FCC filing instead of my article, when the droid-life.com article has me as the source of the information. :-P It’s like the circle of life.
You are easier going than I would be about that. haha
Does software typically get mentioned at hardware events?
Well they did launch the new Chromecast if that counts? But whilst Mi launched their new streaming box, Google removed the Nicosia Shield TV from there Google store! With no firm rumours of a replacement in sight that’s not a good sign…
I sold my Shield TV last month as it’s not a console or streamer but try’s to be both, it’s the software support letting it down, the hardwares very powerful.
Google TV users are quite familiar with that company’s pattern of jumping in and out of beta products. Fortunately the Shield has such great hardware and the Fire TV is supported by Amazon. As for Android TV, Google’s actions provide yet another reason not to consider that company for any stable media system.