Not long ago Sony wisely removed the “Install Other OS” option from the PS3’s list of features and like clockwork many dissenting opinions were thrust upon the gaming community. Class action lawsuits fueled by hacker’s protest and lunacy dominated headlines. Yet there was one uncomplicated question that could have ended all this: Why do you need to install another operating system on your PS3?
Sure the answers would be entertaining but the truth is nobody needed to. But perhaps Sony’s reasons for removing such a feature were not just safeguarding. What if an operating system was deemed no longer necessary because of a new option?
Enter Google TV. If you were living in an alcove under a cliff somewhere, perhaps you do not know what Google TV is. Imagine turning on your PS3 along with your television and being able to watch anything you could think of. Sounds impossible right? Not with Google TV. It aggregates media from the Internet, your cable, and any other video source it can tap into. So watching your favorite show becomes as simple as pressing a button on your controller and saying, “LOST” into your Bluetooth headset or perhaps the PS3 Eye’s microphone picks up the request.
Google TV would then search for the show LOST on all available and connected sources. It would bring up all links in Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, or on your cable lineup. You could choose to stream from the Internet or schedule the program on your DVR. Regardless, you get the media when you wanted and how you wanted.
Perhaps you’re asking why this article focuses solely on the PS3 when Microsoft aggressively promotes digital content. There are several reasons:
1) Sony is a hardware company. Microsoft is not. Sony will alter their televisions (tentatively called Internet TVs) and Blu-Ray players (PS3 hopefully) to work with the Google TV software. Microsoft would have to contract a company to make their Google TV devices just like they did with their HD DVD drives. They refuse to do so for Blu-Ray so why take the chance with something new?
2) Sony already has devices out in Europe, Australia, and Asia that could be altered to support Google TV. The Torne and PlayTV already have inputs to receive your cable and convert your PS3 into a DVR. It would seem that adding Google TV even as a secondary programming would not require much tinkering.
3) Even if both companies made add-ons or built hardware into the console which would allow Google TV to work natively, how many people would purchase the Xbox 360 version over the PS3 with added Blu-Ray capabilities? Let’s not forget Microsoft’s hardware reliability issues with the Xbox 360 would factor in a lot of educated consumer’s decisions. It simply makes more sense to buy the most reliable option with the most features which means the PS3 is the better choice.
4) While Microsoft might be happy to include another feature on their consoles, they will not be inclined to do the mobile Android OS any favors. Microsoft is making a big push to reinvent their mobile operating system and Windows Mobile 7 devices will not control Google TV but Android phones will.
That said, even though Sony is a partner in this “League of Aggregation,” adding Google TV to the PS3 might not be in the future. However, it would solve issues that PS3 owners have concerning Flash support. Think of the streaming capabilities and Android apps on your PSP or the PSPGo which can be tethered to your cell phone. Not to mention there’s still no PS3 DVR devices for the United States, Canada, or Mexico. Sony could make a lot of money by implementing Google TV in their devices and at the same time give the PS3 that final push to leapfrog Microsoft’s beloved Xbox 360.
Links for Google TV: