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How about this for an eyebrow-rasier: Panasonic decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of its costs, according to a Bloomberg report. Now, mind you, Google is giving its Android OS for mobile devices away for free, and there are no signs that […]

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How about this for an eyebrow-rasier: Panasonic decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of its costs, according to a Bloomberg report. Now, mind you, Google is giving its Android OS for mobile devices away for free, and there are no signs that this would change with a TV-optimized version. However, Google has teamed up with Intel to make Android on the TV a reality, and the chips needed to run Android on a Panasonic TV set would have been too pricey for the company. Bloomberg has Panasonic EVP Bob Perry on the record saying that Android would just require too much processing power to make it a viable solution.

That revelation could be a good indicator of how Google is going to approach its rumored Google TV platform, which it reportedly is developing together with Sony and Intel. The New York Times reported two weeks ago that Google TV would come in the form of a set-top box, and VideoNuze shared some further rumors about the box actually working together with, as opposed to replacing, your current cable box. Bloomberg is also reminding us that Samsung rejected the idea of using Android for its devices as well, which makes the set-top box scenario even more believable. You gotta find a way to make your service work somehow if you don’t have any way to get into the devices of two of the biggest TV makers.

Of course, the mere fact that Google was talking to Panasonic and Samsung is also telling. The search giant clearly wants to get into the living room, and it might be considering a multiple platform approach akin to its Android mobile strategy. Its possible that we’ll see a subsidized Google TV set-top box from pay TV providers like Dish, and then a premium-priced TV set sold directly to consumers, possibly manufactured by Sony. Think of it as the Nexus One of connected TVs.

As for Panasonic, the company has so far used its own widget platform — dubbed Viera Cast — to bring YouTube and other online services to connected TVs. Viera Cast is tightly controlled by Panasonic, but Perry has recently been talking about eventually making it more open, even though he stepped short of saying that it will eventually be as unrestricted as a browser environment when I interviewed him at the TV of Tomorrow Show earlier this month. Check out the (previosly published) video interview below.

Related content on GigaOm Pro: With TV Apps, Over-the-Top Video Gets New Backers (subscription required)

  1. [...] box, but it has also been talking to CE makers to get onto devices with less processing power.  Panasonic EVP Bob Perry recently stated that his company shied away from Android on its connected TV sets because the OS would have [...]

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  2. [...] can run Google’s OS might be prohibitively expensive. Panasonic, for instance, reportedly decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of costs associated with doing so. That’s because, according [...]

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  3. [...] that can run Google’s OS might be prohibitively expensive. Panasonic, for instance, reportedly decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of costs associated with doing so. That’s because, according to [...]

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  4. [...] that can run Google’s OS might be prohibitively expensive. Panasonic, for instance, reportedly decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of costs associated with doing so. That’s because, according to [...]

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  5. [...] that can run Google’s OS might be prohibitively expensive. Panasonic, for instance, reportedly decided against using Android on its connected TV sets because of costs associated with doing so. That’s because, according to [...]

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  6. [...] on the other hand, has said that it is not interested in Google TV. Panasonic’s EVP Bob Perry also recently stated that his company isn’t working on any Google TV devices, because of cost issues associated with the processing power needs to run [...]

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  7. [...] would be too pricey. In March, Panasonic EVP Bob Perry told Bloomberg that the Android OS would require too much processing power to make it a viable [...]

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  8. [...] The good news for Yahoo TV Widgets is that in the short term, adoption of Google TV might be limited, in part due to higher prices expected for CE products that run the Google OS. Because they require a more expensive processor and dedicated RAM, Google TV-enabled TVs and other devices are expected to be sold at a premium to other connected TVs. Some CE makers — like Panasonic — have shied away from the system altogether, saying it is too expensive. [...]

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  9. [...] of products from Sony and Logitech running the operating system, consumer electronics companies like Panasonic have complained that the cost of components necessary to power the platform are too pricey. Based [...]

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  10. [...] away entirely. Panasonic EVP Bob Perry, for instance, said earlier this year that his company would not be deploying Google TV-powered products, largely due to the costs involved with building [...]

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