Google disappoints with TV set-back

Google is understood to have stalled the launch of Google TV.

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The search engine giant was hoping to launch Google TV, a new system combining search, internet video and other web services with traditional TV, in time for the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas – the world’s largest consumer technology trade show.

After mixed reviews and technical problems leading to some partners to even block their offerings from Google TV, the company has asked its TV partners LG, Toshiba and Sharp not to display the hardware at the event.

Samsung, however, is still expected to go ahead with Google TV integration.

Vice president of Toshiba’s digital products division Jeff Barney says: “We will not be announcing a Toshiba TV or Blu-ray player or demonstrating the products at CES.

“We have an understanding with Google about the future product roadmap and will bring the right product out at the right timeframe.”

Industry experts have said the decision highlights Google’s shortfalls when it comes to managing relationships with consumer technology manufacturing partners.

Last month Viacom was the latest company to block Google TV from accessing the channel’s content and users attempting to access MTV, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central were met with a ’content unavailable’ message.

Google TV devices are already available from Sony and Logitech, with the first Sony TV running the hardware priced between $600 and $1,400.

Sets are expected to be available in the UK next year, competing with Apple TV, a device allowing film rentals, YouTube streaming, iTunes and WiFi, which launched in September 2010.

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