We're live at Sony's Internet TV press conference, where we're seeing the "world's first HDTV powered by Google TV" (and its gnarly remote). Not bad at all, $1400 for the 46-inch model, available this weekend. Updated.
Check out our first impressions. We like!
• There's four Sony Internet TV models: 24 inches ($600), 32 inches ($800), 40 inches ($1000) and 46 inches ($1400)
• They're all 1080p edge-lit LED sets—except the 24-inch model, which is CCFL-backlit—with built-in Wi-Fi, four HDMI inputs and four USB ports
• They're available for pre-order at SonyStyle.com now and "on shelves" this weekend
• Sony is also offering an accompanying, Internet-capable Blu-ray deck
• The Sony TV will be the only Google TV-enabled HDTV available for this holiday season
• The TV appears to lack much of the hardware functionality of the other Google TV device we've seen so far, such as the Logitech Revue's video chatting.
The Google TV Implementation
The Internet TV uses Chrome for its Google TV browser and search functionality. Search will cull content from live TV, your DVR, and the web, as well as serving up bookmarked programming. The Sony Internet TV will be able to tap into the rest of Google TV's Android ecosystem.
Navigating the menus felt less fluid than Logitech's implementation with the Revue—lag was a bit noticeable through some parts of the interface. The menu structure itself is intuitive enough—standard Google TV fare—and a Sony rep confirmed that content-wise, the only thing they're adding to Google's platform is a couple dozen "Sony Recommends" video channels.
Sony is touting their button-encrusted, remote as a definitive, convenient way of managing its Internet TV and Blu-ray setup. We're still trying to guess what all those buttons do. Sony says design elements have been borrowed from the PS3, in addition to a full QWERTY keyboard and mouse functionality.