What difference does an added digit to a model number make? Well, in the form of Sony’s “new” Google TV Box, extremely little. While there’s been no new developments on the Google TV front from the horse’s mouth, partners continue to make new hardware and release new devices. Unless of course, if you’re Sony – in which case you release the same box again with a new remote. That’s essentially what the NSZ-GS8 is, compared to the older model of NSZ-GS7 there’s very little that has changed, even the build of Google TV looks to be the same.
Announced over on Sony’s Blog, this latest Google TV box’s headlining feature is the inclusion of Voice Search, which is something that’s embedded into the remote itself, and not the box. The new remote (model NSG-MR7U) can be bought from the Sony store for $49.99 and it does in fact work with the older NSZ-GS7. Which means those who really enjoy their Sony Google TV can just go ahead and “upgrade” their existing model, as well as gaining a spare remote.
It’s sad to see that this is all that Sony has to offer but, it does also show that Sony haven’t forgotten about Google TV as a platform. Releasing a newer box with a new model number suggests that Sony is more than happy to keep on selling Google TV devices. It could also suggest that Google are telling their partners to hold off on something bigger until Google TV receives a proper update. Either that, or Sony are just getting really lazy.
Overall though, this is to be expected, there’s nothing new in Google TV to warrant a new box or even new features. The ASUS Qube, Vizio’s Co-Star and the player from Hisense are all good devices but, there’s not too much that sets them apart, aside from maybe their own skin on top of Google TV. Do you have a Sony Google TV? If so, let us know how much of an addition voice search could be to you.