Feeds
80%
Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player review

Second sight

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Google and hardware BFF Sony will be hoping the second time’s the charm for their latest joint foray into the living room. The first Google television adventure floundered in the States, scuppered by hardware complexity and inadequate software. This time around we have a simpler set top box proposal, the NSZ-GS7, and the Google Play store to back it up. What could possibly go wrong?

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Twice shy? Sony's NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Certainly when it comes to hardware, Sony has built a very solid piece of kit. The boaty design of the NSZ-GS7 box is idiosyncratic, and the flipper remote is a clever piece of engineering. One side touch-pad IR zapper, the other a Bluetooth backlight Qwerty rubber keyboard, it allows sprightly navigation around apps and menus, as well as easy input into the integrated web browser. There’s even a 3-axis motion sensor, presumably for future games development.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Qwerty remote...

Bizarrely this multi-purpose doofer has been denied an integrated microphone, an embellishment reserved for the upcoming Google TV Blu-ray player, the NSZ-GP9. Sony says it has released the API for the two-faced remote and remains hopeful developers will develop novel applications for it.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

...and the touchpad alternative on the other side

The box itself features two HDMIs (in/out), an optical digital audio output, Ethernet and twin USBs. It’s a fan-less design and therefore silent, however it does run hot, despite the vented sidepanels. Average power consumption is 8.5W, dropping to 7.3W in Quick Start standby. If you’re prepared to wait for the box to boot, full standby drops this to 0.7W. If you don’t have an Ethernet feed, there’s Wi-Fi available.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Back panel interconnects feature the basics

The power beneath the Google TV hood is provided by a Marvell Armada 1500 processor. This dual-core multimedia-friendly SoC incorporates a Qdeo video processor, responsible for upscaling and 3D video duties. It also enables the NSZ-GS7’s picture-in-picture functionality; one core handles the web, the other live TV. Image quality is excellent. Not only is the 1080p UI crisp, but streaming videos are low on compression noise.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Google TV internet player

Picture in picture: web browsing with TV in the top right, although this image can be repositioned

The Google TV box has no hard drive, but there’s 8GB onboard for app storage and miscellaneous detritus. It runs an HD TV optimised version of the Android Honeycomb OS, but that doesn’t mean you have full access to everything in the Google Play store.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Next page: Killer apps?

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
All aboard the Poo Bus! Ding ding, route Number Two departing
Only another three days of pooing and I can have a ride!
Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads
Only 7 of 50 parliamentarians plump for Samsung Galaxy S
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
The IT Crowd's internet in a box gets $240k of crowdcash for a cause
'Outernet' project proposes satellite-fuelled 'Lantern' WiFi library for remote areas
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Business security measures using SSL
Examines the major types of threats to information security that businesses face today and the techniques for mitigating those threats.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.