Another affordable Google TV option is hitting store shelves starting today, folks. HiSense is the benefactor for the unit you see below, the $99 Pulse that looks to be a very sleek set-top box with quite the solid remote to go along with it. It’s not some amazing magical artifact or the end all, be all of the Google TV world, but for $99 there’s not much risk to enable your home theater with internet connected bliss.
Google TV has been perhaps the most underachieving element of Google’s Android machine so far, but we can’t quite pinpoint what it is. Pricing was to blame initially as the first Google TV unit — Logitech’s Revue — debuted at an obnoxious $300. Since then we’ve gotten some very nice units for that far more attractive $100 price point, including Vizio’s Co-Star. While we can’t be sure how those are selling just yet we imagine things aren’t terribly exciting in the balancing books.
Retailers have been quite hesitant to stock Google TV products as of late which is evidenced by the fact that the aforementioned Co-Star is still only available online. Vizio has a strong presence in the brick and mortar space for its television sets so its status with retailers is still fine. We can only guess that sales aren’t strong enough to take shelf space away from other products these big box retailers feel deserve more shine.
Another issue might be Google themselves. The popular opinion is that the Google TV brand isn’t being pushed aggressively enough. Advertising is slim, and since we know Google tends to keep things quite mild in that regard to allow OEMs to advertise their own wares then we don’t expect that situation to improve much. Couple that with lackluster support from major entertainment players and you have a recipe for an undesirable turnout.
Still, cheap boxes like the HiSense Pulse are out there for those who still believe in Google TV, and that particular unit is available online right now. Head here if you want to get one for yourself.