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Google accused of “coercive sales tactics” over Google TV – unnamed manufacturer


Google has been accused of using “coercive sales tactics” in an attempt to pressure Smart TV manufacturers to adopt its own Google TV platform for YouTube rather than HTML5 based approaches, reports Korean news site ETNews.

Smart TV operators who opted for open-source HTML5 in order to avoid dependance on Google, have bumped into an obstacle – YouTube […] According to industry insiders, Google has demanded HTML5-based Smart TV operators should place the YouTube app on the main homepage and pass browser conformity tests [which] take up to several months.

An industry insider said “Telling us where the YouTube app should be placed is an act of coercive sales tactics.”

Google TV is a platform developed by the company in association with Intel, Sony and Logitech. It uses Chrome to create an overlay suitable for viewing at TV distances, and has been adopted by a number of Smart TV manufacturers, including Korean-based Samsung and LG. It has, however, been very slow to take off on cable and satellite, with only the Dish network offering it. Many content providers have also been hostile, with ABC, NBC, Fox, CBS and Hulu all locking the platform out of their web content.

If the story is true – and ETNews is not always a reliable source – it could suggest that either Samsung or LG is trying to move away from the Google TV platform for future Smart TV products. Since LG is a big user of Google TV and Samsung is not, we know where we’d put our chips.

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