Google is not exactly a hit-and-miss company, with most of its recently released products reaching heights of success pretty fast, but if there’s one product in Mountain View’s portfolio that’s failed to fulfill its potential that’s definitely Google TV.
But why is that, you might ask. Some think it’s because of lack of marketing. Others put the Smart TV platform’s failure on the small number of partnerships with big-time media companies. Finally, there were those who thought Google TV-powered devices were simply too darn expensive.
And while those two first theses still stand, the last one has been shattered to pieces by the release of several dirt-cheap set-top boxes who’ve been unable to significantly bump the platform’s popularity. There was the $99.99 Vizio Co-Star, a Korean-special box from LG UPlus, a $64 China-bound Xiaomi Box, and now another $99.99 “stream player”.
The new set-top box comes from Hisense and is called Pulse. We’ve heard about this device before, but unfortunately our dreams to see it undercut Vizio Co-Star’s price haven’t turned into sweet reality. Still, you can’t call the Pulse expensive at 100 bucks, especially that it seems to do pretty much everything the Co-Star does.
That means it supports 1080p output and it comes with Wi-Fi connectivity, as well as HDMI, USB and Ethernet ports (one of each, as far as we can tell). The actual box doesn’t look very similar to the Co-Star, but the remote is almost identical. There’s the same two-sided functionality, with a QWERTY keyboard on the one hand and more traditional controls along with a trackpad on the other. The remote does look to be a tad smaller than Co-Star’s however, which is definitely not a great thing.
For now, only Amazon seems to be selling the Hisense Pulse (even promising delivery before Christmas if you order it over the next 24 hours or so), but hopes are other retailers will touch the box soon enough. Do you think that’ll be the case? Does Google TV still stand a chance or should the plug be pulled already?