The development of Google TV has been a slow one to be adopted by the internet TV community, though Taiwanese company Asus are looking to use the operating system as a draw to their new product, even if its exterior will probably take much more of the headlines.
The Asus Qube is a set-top box that appears as its deliberately mis-spelled name would suggest, and offers an online streaming service that will for the most part joins the rest of the crowd, but does offer a few unique selling points, most notably their running theme of the six-sided square.
The product, set to be released in the USA only for the time being (a decision claimed to be due to ‘licensing issues’), enables TV viewing, apps, and streaming, with the Asus version of Google TV enabling picture-in-picture views and a ‘cube’ interface for menus and app browsing. Users are also able to store up to 50GB of content on their device along with access to cloud storage provided by Asus.
Control-wise, the product is able to be operated by a ‘voice and motion control’ that has been included as additional methods on a remote that has been described by some websites as ‘complex’.
Operations include an embedded microphone that offers Google Voice recognition to navigate apps or web searches, while games are also playable through the remote due to a system accelerometer that puts the Asus Qube at a similar functionality to an Android handheld device, which themselves are compatible with the Qube (where available) via an official Android Asus app.
While its shape will definitely set it apart from a few of their rivals in the same situation, does the Asus Qube have enough to offer on the inside to set it apart from rival ‘budget’ Google TV products?