Google confirms that a second-generation Chromecast is on the way

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Google’s first Android TV device is less than a fortnight away, however the company’s current television-friendly hardware appears to be doing just fine. In a recent interview with GigaOM, Google VP of product management Mario Queiroz said that Chromecast users have tapped the cast button 650 million times, a significant increase from the 400 million figure shared at I/O back in June.

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Android TV port might finally make that Ouya you bought worth the money

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If you’re one of the unlucky few who purchased an Ouya at some point in the last few years, you now have reason to celebrate. While the Nexus Player—which was announced last week—was the first Android TV device to hit the market, it looks like the Ouya might have effectively become the second. Amazingly, the Android TV operating is in the process of being ported to run on the Ouya by a team on the xda-developers forum lead by member cbwlkr.

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AOL bringing original programming to Android TV

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AOL is brining its video app, along with original shows and movies to Android TV, the company shared the news in an announcement today following Google’s reveal of its new Nexus Player set-top receiver. Some of the content provided by the AOL app includes the short-form web series Park Bench with Steve Buscemi, movies from Miramax and clips from the outfit’s in-house media outlets like HuffPost Live.

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Google Play Music updated with Android TV support, interface tweaks, more

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Google this afternoon started rolling out an update to its Play Music app on Android that bumps it to version 5.6. While the update is not all that big, it does coincide well with the recent announcements at Google I/O this week. One of the biggest changes comes to how device authorizations are handled. You still get to have 10 devices active on your Google Music account, but now only five of them can be phones. The other five can be any combinations of tablets, computers, and other devices. This is obviously not a huge deal for the average user, but could cause issues for power users. The account switcher UI itself has also been updated.

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Google says OEMs will not be able to alter the design of Android Wear, Auto, and TV

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At Google I/O this year, the company unveiled a trio of new operating systems, Android TV, Android Auto, and Android Wear. All of these operating systems, of course, run with an interface designed by Google itself. There was doubt, however, surrounding whether manufacturers would be allowed to overlay their own interface on top, like many do with Android. While speaking with Ars Technica, Google’s engineering director David Burke put an end to our doubts and confirmed that OEMs will not be allowed to overlay their interfaces on top of Android Auto, Android TV, or Android Wear.

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Android TV Remote Control and preview version of Google Cast Receiver hit Play Store

Yesterday at its I/O developer conference, Google introduced its new take on bringing the power of Android to the living room with Android TV. Google’s new “L” version of Android will power set-top boxes and full TV sets from Razor, Asus, Philips, Sony and more bringing voice control and gaming capabilities to the entertainment experience.

In addition to making an Android TV SDK available later today so developers can create software for Android TV, Google has already released a remote control app on the Play Store for use with Android TV when it’s available later this year. Google notes that the app is intended to work with the ADT-1 Developer Kit. The app features both a d-pad and touchpad for using your Android device to maneuver around the Android TV interface. Android TV Remote Control is available today on the Play Store. Read more

New video from Google shows how all of today’s announcements will work together

Google announced a variety of new services and products today at Google I/O, including the “L” version of Android, Android Auto, Android TV, Google Fit, and Android Wear. In an effort to help us all digest this onslaught of news, Google this evening posted a 2-minute video on YouTube showing how all of those services can seamlessly work together to make your life easier.

The video, seen above, shows a man performing daily routine, but with all of Google’s new services. He’s using an Android “L” smartphone paired with an Android Wear watch, paired with a car with Android Auto, paired with Android TV. And, of course, an obligatory cute dog. The video makes it look like it all works pretty seamlessly together. But unfortunately, we’re still quite aways away from this becoming reality.

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Google to unveil at least one Android TV-powered set-top box during Google I/O

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Earlier today, Bloomberg published a profile of Android head Sundar Pichai in which it was stated that Google has several Android TV announcements slated for its I/O developer conference tomorrow. The WSJ has now published another report corroborating the earlier profile. According to the report, Google on Wednesday will unveil at least one “small set-top box” running its new Android TV operating system.

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Report: Google to announce Android TV platform at I/O conference next month

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Google is about to launch a new Android TV platform at its upcoming Google I/O conference in June, according to a new report from GigaOM. The report claims the new platform will be a revamped vision of what Google already has with its Google TV platform and will focus mainly on online content and Android gaming rather than integrating with existing pay TV services:

Android TV won’t be another device, but rather a platform that manufacturers of TVs and set-top boxes can use to bring streaming services to the television. In that way, it is similar to Google TV, the platform the company unveiled at its 2010 Google I/O conference. But while Google TV was focused on marrying existing pay TV services with apps, Android TV will at least initially be all about online media services and Android-based video games.

Google has apparently been making deals with partners in the lead up to launching the new platform, some of which are said to include Netflix and Hulu Plus as well as hardware partners that will build and sell the Android TV devices. The report also shared some details on the Android TV UI: Read more

Android TV screenshots reportedly leak, show off simplified card-based interface

For years now companies have been claiming to that they make the perfect set-top box, with Amazon being the most recent to do so with its FireTV. Notably missing from this arm’s race, however, has been Google. The company was one of the first to offer a set-top box OS with Google TV, but the idea quickly failed and was never widely adopted. Over the past year, reports have started to emerge claiming that Google is plaining a reentrance into the set-top box market with an Android-powered set-top box. The Verge has now published an extensive report on Android TV, with screenshots of the actual interface and much more.

The report, which cites internal Google documents, claims that the idea is far along in development with major app providers already building for the platform as we speak. While Google TV was also based off of Android, this new revision is entirely rebuilt and is something very different. “Android TV is an entertainment interface, not a computing platform,” writes Google. “It’s all about finding and enjoying content with the least amount of friction.” It will be “cinematic, fun, fluid, and fast.”

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