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Google TV ... the good, the bad, and the awesome

Posted 01-03-2011 at 03:25 PM by jkzfixme
Updated 01-14-2011 at 02:20 PM by jkzfixme

Oh Google how I <3 you ... and apparently you <3 me back. I just got my free Logitech Revue, compliments of the Google Developers contest. It couldn't have come at a more perfect time. I am in the midst of moving. While moving I dropped a huge box of technical books on my laptop and that sucker is fried like a meal at a truck stop. Ok, no worries I have a server, I can plug a monitor into and build a GUI ... plugged it in ... nothing. Changed the power supply ... nothing. Now both computers are down for the count,it was a dark day. Low and behold the UPS guy showed up at my door with a bundle of Google Goodness. Now I can give you all the good bad and ugly , after truly putting it through its paces during the week long wait for my new motherboard to come in. Note I am not going to go terribly in depth with this , just the things that struck me as interesting or odd over the course of the week.

The Good

First and foremost - Chrome & Flash 10.1

DLNA - so I can plug my external HDD into my WRT160NL and stream to every device in the house.

Fast - Intel Atom CE4100 1.2GHz processor which has the capability to decode two 1080p video streams simultaneously. ( note many users have complained about long updates and choppy youtube/ netflix, I have experienced nothing of the sort. I have had no issues streaming 1080p flash from various sites. I think that these are stemming from inferior connections, but that's just my theory. ) Also of note here , is that I am speaking about the interface itself there are some speed issues with the browser which I will go in depth with later on.

Keyboard - It thrills my inner dork to have one keyboard to rule them all. I feel like I am master of the universe with all the devices this thing controls, or at least my couch. I have also tried out the smaller version of the keyboard, like the Sony comes with. And I have tried both the Logitech & Google TV Android apps on my cell phone. All are inferior to the large stock keyboard. I do however have some constructive criticism for Logitech ... it needs to be back lit ! Come on seriously what do a couple led's cost ?

Aesthetics - man that sleak little box looks good, certainly alot better than the mythTV media center box I had crammed in my bookshelves.

The Bad

No Market as of yet - Right now it has a couple apps, and they happen to fit my needs to an extent. But with the integration of the market I will no longer have to stick to standard codecs for my DLNA server .mkv, .wmv . you can forget about streaming them ,but with the impending integration of the market I can assume most of the codec issues will disappear. Also noticeable in this field is the loss of official Gapp integration. There are many familiar cues such as the share this page which is surreal on the big screen TV , however it does not have all the features I am used to like send via email, you can only tweet about it.You can of course go to the standard Google web pages , but its just so hard to go back once you are used to all the integration. Also the source is still closed, I would assume that since they said Market in early 2011 this will change in a relatively short time. Once the SDK comes out, the sky is the limit.

The Browser - I have 50 down by 5 up internet. There is no reason whatsoever that the browser should lag like it does. This is mostly on sites with lots of flash, and dynamic content. Scrolling up and down a web page is tedious. Tabs are not yet ironed out, to a level I find acceptable. Over all the browser is pretty quirky, strange things like when you ctrl + F to find something you have to press enter and not click the next arrow.

Google's fight with the " big three " - ABC, CBS, NBC, are all blocking the device from streaming their content. Hulu has already jumped on the band wagon , and supposedly Fox is hot on their heels. Previously you where able to change the way the browser announced itself to the site and get around this, but they caught onto it pretty quickly and put a stop to it. I would assume this all stems from the corporate bean counters realizing that they make less on a streaming add then a broadcast one and fighting vehemently to keep their future bonuses intact.

DO NOT USE the mouse button on the touch pad ... It leads to all kinds of shenanigans, use the mouse button on the top left of the keyboard.

The Awesome

Potential - This device is crawling with the " what could be " factor. I think of it as my G1 in the early days when I was saying to myself OK Google , you laid the ground work, but I'm sick of waiting, I will fix whats bugging me myself or dig through the forums until I find someone who already did. It will soon be time for the forums and developers to shine. This platform has huge advantages , mainly the large screen and fast processor , but who knows where you could go from there.

PIP - especially with the new update , where as you can move the location of the pip around making the web page more viewable. ( does not work with Netflix )

Keyboard - did I mention how much I love the keyboard ?

DLNA - streaming media
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  1. Old Comment
    Logitech Revue has been rooted , giving you full access to the Android market
    Posted 01-06-2011 at 08:31 AM by jkzfixme jkzfixme is offline
    Updated 01-14-2011 at 02:20 PM by jkzfixme


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