Lost in the shuffle of today’s events is that Google TV is getting significant updates today.
Today, Google TV is moving to the latest version of Android (Jelly Bean, 4.2.2), and we’ve refactored Google TV so that our TV OEM partners can update to future versions of Android in a matter of weeks rather than months. For developers, this means you can build TV experiences using the latest Android APIs, including the NDK.
Today Google TV is also moving to the latest version of Chrome, and from now on Google TV benefits from Chrome updates on the same six week cycle that you’ve come to expect from Chrome. In Chrome on Google TV, we’ve added support for hardware-based content protection, enabling developers to provide premium TV content in HD within their web apps.
Google TV has always been a(t least a) generation behind Android phones and you have to wonder if Andy Rubin’s move away from Android is allowing the YouTube group that runs GoogleTV more access to core Android features. Word on the Street is that Rubin and YouTube boss “couldn’t be in the same room together”.
Speaking of YouTube, the GoogleTV Youtube App got a facelift today with the following additions:
– New home screen interface. – Enhanced video playback controls. – Support for paid subscriptions.
Update: LG is on board. Press release and 4.2.2 demo below
LG TO UPDATE GOOGLE TV WITH LATEST ANDROID 4.2.2. JELLY BEAN OS With Support for the Android NDK, LG Smart TV with Google TV Will Provide Access to Larger, More Diverse Selection of Apps and Games
SEOUL, May 16, 2013 — LG Electronics (LG) today announced that its Google TVs will be updated with the latest version of the Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean operating system. Available in the third quarter, the update will enable customers to enjoy more applications, including games that provide a greater level of interactivity and advanced graphics. LG is showcasing its Google TV with the new operating system at the Google I/O developer conference in San Francisco this week.
In addition to boosting overall performance, the latest Jelly Bean update supports the Android-based Native Development Kit (NDK) so Google TV owners can have the widest, most diverse selection of apps to choose from. Smartphone apps designed using the NDK will run on Google TV with little to no modifications. With NDK compatibility, users can now play more games on a bigger LG Google TV screen. This level of compatibility makes it easier for developers to enter the burgeoning Smart TV app market.
“LG’s Google TV with the latest Jelly Bean operating system and NDK support will deliver an enhanced user experience and access to more great apps,” said Havis Kwon, president and CEO of the LG Home Entertainment Company. “In addition to enabling users to enjoy advanced Android apps, the latest OS will also provide developers with new opportunities in the Smart TV arena.”
Users will also benefit from LG’s exceptional remote control options, which will make it easier to interact with the vast amount of content available on LG Google TV. In addition to the intuitive functionality of its Magic Remote Qwerty, LG will introduce a free remote control app that can turn any Android smartphone or tablet into a two-handed, touch-sensitive game controller. LG’s new controller app is the ideal control solution for the large number of interactive games set to arrive on the upgraded Google TV platform as it provides a level of control necessary to play more complex games such as football and racing simulations.
The latest update will also include LG’s patented 3D Game Changer, bringing a dimension to interactive games never seen before. 3D Game Changer produces a fully immersive effect by displaying 2D games in enhanced 3D mode, for an effect previously available only in movies filmed with 3D equipment.
Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean will be available as an over-the-air (OTA) download for existing LG Google TVs in the United States starting in the third quarter. What’s more, LG Google TV will be available for the first time outside the United States when it is introduced in the Korean market later this year.
For a video demonstration of LG Google TV with Android 4.2.2. Jelly Bean, see: