New York Times reports that Google has partnered with Intel and Sony to create a TV platform powered by Android.
"Google and Intel have teamed with Sony to develop a platform called Google TV to bring the Web into the living room through a new generation of televisions and set-top boxes. (...) The partners envision technology that will make it as easy for TV users to navigate Web applications, like the Twitter social network and the Picasa photo site, as it is to change the channel. Google intends to open the Google TV platform, which is based on its Android operating system for cellphones, to software developers in the hopes of spurring the same creativity that the consumers have seen in phone apps."
The idea is not new, as many other companies tried to bring the Web to the TV. YouTube already has a version for large screens, Google already sells TV advertising and there are many Google apps that could improve the TV experience. New York Times says that Google's software will include a new interface for YouTube, a browser and other Android apps that will extend the functionality.
"Google has built a prototype set-top box, but the technology may be incorporated directly into TVs or other devices, like Blu-ray players. (...) A person with knowledge of the Google TV project said that the set-top box technology was sufficiently advanced that Google had begun testing it with Dish Network, one of Google's longstanding partners in the TV Ads program."