Google TV service launches in UK with Sony tie-up

Sony Google TV-enabled set top box Earlier Google TV hardware struggled to sell well

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Sony and Google have announced a tie-up that will see Google's interactive TV service made available outside the US for the first time.

The set-top box allows users to browse the internet through their television, as well as access a range of specially designed applications.

The device, which will cost around £200 when it is released in July, will compete with Apple's own TV box.

Apple TV is already available in the UK, currently priced at £99.

In a press release, Sony said their Google TV product, the NSZ-GS7, will also soon be made available in Canada, Australia, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Brazil and Mexico.

Dual-sided remote

"Entertainment content is available through so many channels and sites, and Google TV helps consumers easily find what they want to watch, listen to or play with the freedom of the internet and using the familiar Chrome search engine technology," said Gildas Pelliet, Sony's European head of marketing.

The device will be followed with a Blu-ray version expected to cost around £300 when it is launched later in the year.

The box will be controlled by a dual-sided remote control with a full QWERTY keyboard.

Like Apple's offering, Google TV can be controlled via a smartphone.

Google's foray into television has faced some hiccups since it first launched Google TV in the US in 2010.

Its devices were criticised for being too expensive, and several TV networks blocked the US-only service from accessing their web content.

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