No, this isn’t Google TV. This is the work of Chinese video-tech company Geniatech. Their Android TV box runs 2.2 (FroYo) and… well it does a lot of what Google TV does, or will do at least once Google starts rolling out Honeycomb 3.1 to Google TV later this summer. In the mean time though Geniatech seems to promising a lot out of this device, even if its just promising what Google TV is promising. But hey, that’s the beauty of open source.
SInce Android is open source people can run it on just about anything they can pay an engineer to squeeze it on to, and if one person thinks they can do it better or faster than someone else that’s free game too. And this is what brings us to Android TV. The creator’s site describes their creation as follows.
Android TV is a TV tuner box, a Media player, a Netbook, a digital photo frame, a game console and a internet set-top, it provides a new television entertainment and brings you very powerful internet TV experience
Android is an open source system, free for manufactures to use
Users can use set top box device with Android TV feature to make your home TV an internet TV
With Android TV, you can view and download several of videos and games to make home TV more than a TV
A full HD support media box with internet connection and HDMI output bases on Android 2.2, Geniatech Android TV provides you the capability of all-in-one box entertainment box on your big TV screen.
Geniatech claims the box can run any Android Application that doesn’t require a microphone, but no mention of a GPS unit or telephony radios is made so this may be a bit of a broad claim. What they do explicitly point out is that Android TV is a functioning digital TV receiver, which is a key difference between this product and simply mirroring your phone on a TV screen. Geniatech also mentions its possible to use the box as a home gaming console, picture frame, and “internet box.”
This is a lot to promises for a platform that Google itself has had to take its time with. Throw in the fact that there are a couple spelling errors on the site (given it is run by a foreign company), and several discrepancies on the site in regards to the specs, and my faith in the machine is a little shaken. Nonetheless, its cool to see Android continuing its spread to other platforms, even if its already been to this particular one. We’ll have to wait and see if anything comes out of this though, since the manufacturer makes no mention of availability on its website.
Let us know what you think.