Following last year Google TV app update, which added features such as movie and TV series recommendations, critics’ ratings, and more. Today, the company announced at the Google I/O developer conference that later this year, users will be able to stream TV shows and movies directly from their Android phone or tablet to their TV. The company also provided updated metrics related to the growing reach of its Android OS and introduced new tools for Android OS developers.
Google has been working on improving its connected TV and companion app since 2020, when it first introduced in new Google TV interface for your Chromecast streaming devices. He also applied the Google TV name to the app, formerly known as the Google Play Movies & TV app. Earlier this year, Google also removed section “Films and TV” from the Play Store, noting that the Google TV app will be a centralized place to buy, rent, and watch movies and TV shows on mobile devices.
The company did not provide further details about its plans to add broadcast support to the app, saying it would come closer to launch. But a photo provided by Google shows that at least one of the supported apps is NBCU’s Peacock.
As part of its announcements, the company also offered several updates to the Android TV ecosystem, noting that there are currently 110 million devices active monthly on the Android TV OS, including Google TV. Its from 80 million active devices per month The drawing was announced by Google at last year’s Google I/O event.
It also says that the Android TV OS now offers more than 10,000 apps.
Of course, the Android TV OS isn’t a direct equivalent to something like Roku or Amazon’s Fire TV, since it’s not just used on the company’s own devices like the Chromecast. Instead, Google’s strategy is to license its platform to partners, including TV OEMs and pay-TV operators around the world. More than 300 partners currently use the platform, including 7 of the top 10 TV OEMs, according to Google.
But Google’s figure of 110 million active devices can’t be directly compared to rivals Roku and Amazon.
Android TV OS metrics are actually calculated by counting the number of devices that were actively used during the month – meaning that a user with multiple devices can count those devices separately, but a family with multiple people watching on the same device will be counted once.
Roku and Amazon define monthly active users as “accounts” that have been active for a month. This means that even if that account is streamed to multiple different devices over a period of time, it will only be counted once. If Roku or Amazon counted active devices, as Google does, their number would be higher.
In December 2020, Amazon stated that Fire TV had topped 50 million active users per month – the number is still mentioned today on their Amazon Ads website. In January of this year, Amazon also noted that it had sold over 150 million Fire TV devices to bring their numbers more in line with Google’s device claims. Roku, meanwhile, said it ended in 2021 on its 2022 Q1 earnings report. from 60.1 million active accounts. It does not count active devices.
Google has also highlighted several features and developer tools in Android 13 related to its Android TV efforts. According to Google, the tools are focused on productivity and quality, accessibility and multitasking, and include:
- Audio manager: This allows applications to anticipate audio paths and understand exactly which playback mode is available.
- media session: App integration allows Android TV to respond to HDMI status changes to save power and pause content.
- Input Device API: Added support for various keyboard layouts. (Added support for various physical keyboard layouts for game developers, such as QWERTZ and AZERTY keyboards.)
- System-wide access preference: Allow users to enable audio descriptions in apps.
- Picture in Picture (PIP) API: PiP on TV supports advanced mode to display video from a group call and pinned mode to avoid overlapping content with other apps.
- Keep your API clean: Prevents the overlay from hiding important content in full-screen applications.
The Picture-in-Picture API is particularly interesting as it can bring more co-viewing features to the Android TV ecosystem after Apple SharePlay presentation, which allows you to watch collaboratively via FaceTime across platforms, including Apple TV.
Credit: techcrunch.com /