Google TV Reportedly Gaining Smart Home and Fitness Features

A photo of Google TV on a TV render

Your Google TV streaming device may soon be a smart home hub and Fitness+ rival.
Image: Google

It’s no secret that Google has been vying for space in your living room for years. Google TV has undergone quite a few rebrands since it first launched in 2010, but it still managed to become the one of the main streaming platforms. And it’s not stopping: Google has its sights set on more than simply streaming your favorite TV shows and providing recommendations on what to watch.

In a chat with ProtocolGoogle TV’s Rob Caruso, ddirector of pproductmanagement, indicated that the company focuses on making Google TV devices such as Chromecasts more capable this year, beginning with smart home and fitness integrations. This would make Google TV decidedly more Apple-like: the latter company’s Apple TV set-top box is more expensive than its competitors, but it serves as a hub for HomeKit-enabled devices. devices and also integrates with the Apple Watch for Fitness+ streaming training classes.

We have already knew that Android TV would not be left behind in the change the brand to Google TV, and Caruso confirmed that Google will continue to support the platform, which still works most active streaming devices are still in use.

“Android TV is still available and still rolling out, and obviously still supported,” Caruso told Protocol.

That’s good news for homeowners. legacy devices, though Android, which Google TV is based on, isn’t exactly known for its streamlined software updates.

Google also wants to work more closely with content providers to make its Universal TV search your one-stop shop for streaming. It’s a strategy as old as time, pulled straight from the company’s search engine playbook. But to achieve its goals, it needs more third parties to come into the fold. Netflix, for example, is one of the major streaming networks that doesn’t allow you to add movies and TV shows to your watch list. As a Google TV user, I rely on that feature to keep track of what I’m interested in, and it offers the added benefit of being notified when it’s available.

“I hope that we will see some welcome improvements and innovations in the coming months not only with Netflix, but with many partners,” said Caruso, who joined Google last August after a stint at Netflix.

With Google’s investment in fitbthat, it is not surprising to see Google looking for a fitness integration for GoogleTV. Caruso told Protocol it is a “great exploration area”. It will be interesting to see if Google takes advantage of Fitbit On-demand training classes (which are available in the Fitbit app with a premium subscription), or introduce a new Peloton or Fitness+ competitor.

The smart home may be the last major piece of the Google TV puzzle. makes sense with to import, the smart home standard that promises to unite them all, on the horizon. Google is exploring better integration with smart devices, including Android phones. It is not clear whether this would go beyond enlargement Quick pairing feature Google announced last week, which allows Android smartphones to pair devices to the network, something like a smart hub. Not unlike the Samsung strategy revealed with its SmartThings platform.

Google TV user the numbers have trended upwards: the platform currently has 110 million monthly active devices and hardware partners like TCL are allegedly selling 10 million Google TV sets one year.

The question remains whether Google can offer a compelling use for its devices beyond simply viewing television. Or maybe it turns out that all you need to keep users connected is to be the best search engine for couch potatoes. For now, youhere’There’s no timeline for when Google will release new Google TV features, though Caruso hinted “sometime later this year.”

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