Google's TV timing may reveal more to come

A carefully placed story in the New York Times about Google's upcoming TV service tries very hard to avoid giving anything away. The story was based on "people with knowledge of it" - although not named, because nobody is allowed to talk about it, they clearly were allowed to talk about it and the NY Times knows perfectly well who they are.

A carefully placed story in the New York Times about Google's upcoming TV service tries very hard to avoid giving anything away. The story was based on "people with knowledge of it" - although not named, because nobody is allowed to talk about it, they clearly were allowed to talk about it and the NY Times knows perfectly well who they are.

So why would a company only talk to the press on condition that everyone had to pretend? The most likely reason is that the project - which has the usual trappings of ahellish cross-company, cross-cultural, cross-market collaboratiion with TV networks, Sony, Intel and other giant business egos - isn't ready to launch, and the pre-launch publicity isnf't ready either (Imagine getting sign-off on a marketing campaign with that roster of behemoths to please. I'd rather sell voodoo dolls in the Vatican). Nonetheless, it has been deemed that we should know Google TV is on the way.

Google has an uncanny knack - one could almost say mischievous tendency - to time its leaks and launches to kibosh its competitors' own announcements. Which could mean that one of its bigger competitors has something similar in the pipeline, Google has wind of it, and suspects that the competition is about to break cover. What could be more useful than already having people talking about Google TV, thus making Apple's TV or Microsoft's TV or Oracle's TV seem like me-toos?

My money, as I've said before, is on Apple, where a TV-sized device makes so much marketing, technical and strategic sense that the hole in reality where it should be is almost painful. And while this is all pure supposition and non-informed comment on non-existent products about which nothing is known -- at least you know who's behind it. Which is one up on the NY Times, I guess.

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