Is voice control coming to Google TV?

So far, Google TV has failed to catch on but could a new interface be the key to its future success?

Could voice control be the solution to Google TV's teething problems? Google launched the platform, which combines the best of the web with the best of television, in 2010 and so far it has failed to take off, even if its partners in the venture, such as Sony, have been pushing HDTVs and accessories such as Blu-ray players that incorporate the technology.

As well as a perceived lack of awareness, the challenge for Google seems to be the medium, not the content. What started off as a platform that offers web and TV services on consumers' televisions has quickly evolved to include more or less full access to Google Play apps, music, TV shows, films and music, plus Amazon and Netflix via their smart apps. However a TV is not a desktop with a keyboard or a tablet with a touchscreen and navigating this type of content or accessing services such as Google Maps searches is a very different proposition.

Many in the industry, including Samsung and LG, believe that the solution could lie in motion or voice control and it would appear that Google shares this belief.

A video that appeared on the web during the weekend but has since been taken down, showed Peter Sherman, Google TV's Product marketing Manager, demonstrating a number of voice control features. They include search, app activation and being able to say what you want to watch, whether a specific show, type of show or TV channel.

The video also demonstrated tablet connectivity, enabling users to stream content from their TV to other devices.

According to reports on BGR.com, the latest version of the platform also offers an improved guide function similar to that found on YouTube that allows users to preselect and order content for future viewing while watching another TV show, video clip or movie.

Google TV was originally launched in the US in 2010 and since July 2012 has also been available in the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia, Brazil and Mexico.

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Writer: AFP
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