Jan 09 AT 3:25 PM Taylor Wimberly 26 Comments

Hands-on the second wave of Google TV boxes


Last week we learned that Marvell would power some second-generation Google TV boxes, and last night we got our first preview of their Foresight Platform at CES Unveiled. Marvell only had a prototype box on display, but this was the first time we’ve seen the 1.2 GHz Marvell Armada 1500 system-on-a-chip (SoC) in action.

The main benefit of the ARM-powered platform will be lower cost devices. A Marvell representative told us, “I can tell you it’s going to be a lot cheaper than $300. It will be a very attractive price point.” We saw the sales of the Logitech Revue really take off when the price was reduced to $99, so hopefully Marvell and their OEM partners can offer a device somewhere around that price point.

Unfortunately, we didn’t really get a chance to evaluate the performance of the Armada 1500 processor. We witnessed a couple apps and the browser, but I didn’t see anything that really pushed the performance of the device. The Armada 1500 includes a Vivante GC1000 GPU core, so we can’t wait to see how 3D games run.

Expect Google TV devices powered by Marvell to be available in early Q2. Check out the hands-on video below for a quick preview of the Marvell prototype in action.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • http://whysoangrybirds.com mikeyDroid

    Still not sure I’ll ever know anyone who owns one of these things.. I originally thought they were pretty slick, but not so sure anymore.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      I think people expected Google TV to deliver more content. The 100 new YouTV channels that are coming this year should help the situation. More Android apps will also boost adoption.

      • kai99

        I was never content with my Revue and took it back as a result BUT upgraded to the Sony GTV and absolutely love it. The price point originally put me off but it’s well worth the $170 I shelled out! As far as “limited apps” go, just email them to yourself from your phone using “Easy Installer” which is free on the android market, download them by clicking on the attachment in your email in your browser on your GTV and be done with it.

        • kinderdm

          Know of any way to do this without an android phone? I have a google tv and a kindle firle and would love to be able to send apps packages manually to both of these but without a phone with full market access I’m not sure how to get the files. Thanks.

    • yankeesusa

      I know a few people who own the revue and everyone that has it loves it. Especially with the latest update. I think its great and I plan on getting the revue. I love that its android, has android market and will run amazon video and netflix. I think this will pick up at least until more tvs like the new lg tvs that were just introduced start including google tv built in.

      • vitriolix

        I’ve got a Revue, and aside from the stupid pricing they are amazing. At $99 these are a must buy.

    • LukeT32

      Having YouTube and the internet at your finger tips from your tv (if you don’t already have an internet ready tv) is amazing….. and for $99 you can’t go wrong. I do not regret spending that $99.

  • spazby

    as i said, android tv looks better than google tv…

    • robb

      who are you again? And why are we supposed to listen? Exactly.

  • amgala

    I bought a refurb unit, and while it is pretty cool, there aren’t many apps made for GTV yet. Hopefully this new push will bring some really cool apps!

  • jawabba

    I think I’m one of the 7 remaining Americans that don’t have a HD Flat Panel TV.

  • http://www.jaxidian.org/update/ jaxidian

    Any chance these have a TV Tuner built-in?

    This was my biggest beef with the Venue: there is no way to hook my antenna up to the Google TV. If I can’t hook my antenna up to it, then I need to keep my HTPC on my AV rack. If I have a full-blown HTPC sitting there, why would I want a Google TV? That’s just too much crap there, imho. However, if the Google TV handled OTA television stations (complete with DVR/guide/etc.), then it would become my A/V hub at my TV!

    • http://clarklab.net Clark Wimberly

      What sort of output does your antenna have? I don’t know much about OTA TV but it seems like you could easily find a way to get it into the HDMI input on the GTV.

      • kinderdm

        Ive looked into this for myself since I have the same problem. There are options for doing this but you are talking about another $100+ box and I’m wanting few boxes if possible. Add to the that the fact that the guide is worthless with OTA, even if you do get it into the GTV via hdmi. All you could do would be to probably have the tv as a picture in picture and see your notification on top of what you are watching. I agree if the revue could do DVR from an antenna in the future, maybe saving to a usb drive, then I would be all set and could dump the HTPC all together.

  • cb2000a

    At this point Roku really owns the internet TV market. 360 channels and growing…sold everywhere now. I use Roku and a indoor vhf/uhf amplified antenna and pay $8 a month for TV for Netflix (not including internet access which I would have anyway).

    • kurelgyer

      I have both the Logitech Revue and the Roku. The Roku is ok, but it will not do YouTube and does not have a web browser. This is a huge negative. Also, I have not been able to live stream TWIT Live for the last two months. The stream never completes loading. Steee-rike two.


    im still in a hold pattern when it comes to google tv.. just does not fancy me yet

    • rekaviles

      The “gib deal” about GTV is that they actually combined TV with a set-top box. Whereas set-top boxes run streaming content apps ( or games ), GTV allows you to link the 2, so no need to switch from video 1 and back to TV, when using it.

      The only catch is that you need a digital box, with an HDMI out to make use of this link, if not, it acts as a regular set-top.

      I have the Revue GTV, Apple tv, Roku XL, XBox [with the new update, it provides lots of content] and another generic set-top for the netflix and Hulu app. With that said, I can tell you for a fact that GTV took a dfferrent approach and eveyone else will have to follow it’s lead come next yr.

  • Jeff Pan

    Might take a couple of years before Google TV (Apple TV too) takes off

    • delinear

      Everybody is rushing to get something into this market at the moment. Google and Apple, but also specialists like Roku, set top manufacturers, TV manufacturers (Samsung Smart TV etc), console manufacturers – everyone wants a piece of this. It will be interesting to see who wins out but I think consumers are probably just going to be confused by a lot of it for the next few years.

  • rekaviles

    Hopefully this means that Google will now make some serious apps for this platform, because thats what it’s lacking ATM. Once they make 1 or 2 useful apps and the TVs and set-top boxes come out, developers will have no choice but to make thier apps compatible.

    How about G+ video chat app on GTV ?!?!

    By this time next yr, GTV will be on the map.

  • Christopher Campbell

    google tv with a built in dvr = awesome!

  • lokidokie

    Yeah, wouldn’t mind if it was more powerful. But looks good

  • marx1684

    Google should partner w/Sony to get at Microsoft who is already their competition & try to have Android software in the next Playstation. They’ve already worked together on the Xperia Play. That way Google would make a nice leap into webTV & Sony would have a WAY better OS w/google apps & everything else available on tablets & phones.

    • delinear

      Sony traditionally want to lock down and own the OS and distribution channels, so this would be a hard sell for Google, but they might be persuaded if it looks like MS are going to pull off the same trick with WP software on the next XBOX.

  • JM

    Did anyone else notice that the keyboard they use is the keyboard that comes with the Logitech Revue? Isn’t the unifying technology owned by Logitech?