Google has confirmed that the first Android TV sets, made by Sony, Sharp and TP Vision for Philips will go on sale this Spring.
The search giant’s latest attempt to get TV right follows on the success of Chromecast, and will see you able to make use of multiple on-demand and catch up services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer and search for content across all of them at once.
As all Android TV devices will be Cast-compatible, you’ll be able to search for content on your phone and throw episodes of Marco Polo and Game of Thrones to your TV just as you would with Chromecast.
Android TVs will also feature voice search as standard, letting you use your Android phone as a personal TV butler. ‘Google, fetch me the latest episodes of Downton Abbey.’ And so on.
What isn’t clear is if Android TV sets will land in the UK at the same time as the US launch. Android TV promises to let you seamlessly switch between regular broadcast TV and the on-demand world, but it’s not clear if Sony and the gang are building sets with integrated Freeview and Freesat tuners.
We also don’t have a clear idea about how much Android TVs will cost. Google’s vice president of engineering Hiroshi Lockheimer said: “Android TV will come to life on screens big and small, including brilliant 4K displays, thanks to the work of our partners.”
Sony’s 4K Ultra HD line-up for 2015 includes the 55-inch and 65-inch X900C and the 75-inch X910C. These Bravia panels run Android TV and feature Sony’s Triluminos colour-enhancing tech. Prices have yet to be announced, but don’t expect them to come cheap.