It may be a good time to bring Chrome to your living room HDTV if you haven’t already. That’s because Logitech, a maker of mice, webcams and other computer peripherals, is slashing the price of its Revue Google TV set-top box to just $99, down from $249.
The Revue lets users search for things they’re interested in, whether it’s an actor’s name, sports team, or channel name, and pulls up content from the Web as well as where it’s playing on television. If you use a USB video camera, the box also turns your TV into a video-chat monitor.
While the price drop results from the fact that more Revues have been returned than sold, Christina Bonnington for Wired wrote, “It’s not totally clear why users were returning the unit.” Indeed, while Revue has had some problems such as TV network sites blocking the unit’s Chrome browser from playing their content, when PC World reviewed the top five media streamers a few months ago the Revue fared as well as three of them, including the Apple TV.
During an earnings conference call the other day when acting Logitech CEO Guerrino De Luca discussed disappointing earnings due in part to sluggish Revue sales, he said while the company should have done a few things differently, “Engaging with Google was the right thing to do,” reports ZDNet. Time Techland’s Jared Newman, for his part, offered a few ideas for making Google TV more palatable for consumers.
It remains to be seen whether the new price entices more people to bring Google into the living room. But it also is worth noting that Google TV will get new software at the end of September with access to the Android market.
“It’s a major update to the platform. It’s what the platform should always have been, particularly the addition of the App Store for Android apps for the TV. The good news is that all these beautiful new things will run on the existing box,” De Luca said, according to ZDNet.