Android TV to debut at Google I/O 2014 conference on June 25-26?

2 June 2014, 6:46 am EDT By Alexandra Burlacu Mobile & Apps

Google is preparing for its annual I/O developer conference set to take place on June 25-26, where the company will reportedly showcase a new Android TV.

The company already made some efforts to take over the living room with its Google TV, and the upcoming Android TV is the next step in this direction.

Citing several sources, Gigaom claims that Google will be announcing its new Android TV at its Google I/O 2014 conference later this month. Android TV will reportedly arrive as a new platform for TV and set-top box manufacturers, aiming to help bridge the gap between streaming devices and television.

Google launched its Google TV back in 2010, but failed to see much success. The upcoming Android TV is expected to be more focused on "online media services along with Android-based games."

The company is reportedly in talks with Netflix and Hulu Plus to collaborate on Android TV, and may also unveil some hardware partners at the conference. Gigaom further reveals that Android TV's secret weapon is dubbed Pano, and is the key factor in designing a simpler user interface.

With this purported Pano, apps will reportedly appear as individual pieces of content in a card-like manner on the Android TV homescreen, thus allowing users to easily browse movies, TV shows, and more on the device. This card-like UI will differentiate itself from traditional Smart TV UIs by allowing for horizontal browsing.

"Content will be presented in a series of cards that can be browsed horizontally, and each movie or TV show episode has deep links into publisher's apps, giving users the option to start playback right away. That's different from the traditional smart TV experience, where users generally first have to launch an app from a publisher, and then browse the apps catalog before they can play a title," notes Gigaom.

The publication further points out that Android TV is a software platform, not hardware, and it would make sense for Google to unveil it at the I/O conference. It remains unknown at this point just when the actual hardware may be ready, or which partners will collaborate with Google. If the company unveils the new Android TV at I/O, the hardware product could follow in a few months.

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