Google TV has seen better days. After an exciting start, the HTPC platform has been largely ignored by mainstream consumers, and the two hardware launch partners remain the only makers of Google TV devices to date. Logitech’s Google TV users remain a small but dedicated lot, and they’re growing increasingly frustrated over a lack of support and late updates. In order to have full access to the Revue hardware, a group of owners have petitioned the company to unlock the boootloader, in order to easily and effectively create custom ROMs and other mods.
Logitech Revue owners are probably much more dedicated to Google TV than Logitech at the moment: the company has decided to stop producing hardware after crushing losses on the expensive set-top box. The Google TV Honeycomb update has been available for Sony’s various Google TV devices for weeks, but some Revue users are still having trouble updating their equipment. The slow update is certainly at least partly to blame for the frustration of advanced users, many of whom would rather “roll their own” as far as software goes, in the same way that Android smartphone owners can do with custom ROMs.
Advanced Revue users have been able to root the device since just after its release, but jut like some Motorola an HTC smartphones, a locked bootloader makes more intense customization almost impossible. Rudimentary custom ROMs can be loaded onto devices with locked bootloaders, but modified kernels can’t, making significant updates to Android (for example, a modified Google TV OS based on Ice Cream Sandwich) basically impossible. Logitech has not responded to the users’ request, but the petition is currently sitting with nearly 800 digital signatures. While Logitech has very little to lose by granting the request, since they’re ending production on the Revue anyway, such petitions are rarely successful.