Cable Operators

Google Yanks Content-Light Nexus Q Streaming Device: Report

8/09/2012 9:30 AM Eastern

Google has indefinitely suspended shipments of its $300 Nexus Q music and video streaming device just weeks after launching it, after early users complained that the orb-shaped player did not provide access to enough content, The New York Times reported.

In late June, Google announced the Nexus Q as well as its own tablet, the Nexus 7, a 12-ounce tablet with a 7-inch, 1280-by-800-pixel HD touchscreen display. The Internet giant is aiming to compete with Apple's hugely popular iPad with the tablet, while the Nexus Q was designed to get a foothold in competing in the over-the-top set-top space.

Google Nexus QThe Nexus Q, a wireless 2-pound device controlled by an Android phone or tablet, provides access music, movies, videos and TV shows from the Google Play online store, as well as YouTube video. In addition, the company promised that "thousands" of episodes of broadcast and cable TV shows from studios including ABC Studios, NBCUniversal and Sony Pictures would be available in its online storefront.

But that wasn't enough to impress consumers, who found the Nexus Q to be more expensive than similar products -- like the Roku and Apple TV boxes -- while offering far less media content, the Times reported. In addition, users found the fact that it could be controlled only by Android devices to be limiting.

According to The New York Times, the company's only statement on the delay was sent to customers who had ordered the product. The notice said in part that "we have decided to postpone the consumer launch of Nexus Q while we work on making it even better," the newspaper reported. Customers who ordered the device already will receive it at no charge, according to the Times.

Separately, the company's Google TV connected-television platform has also been a dud with consumers. The Google TV software, available in devices from Sony Electronics, LG Electronics and Vizio, is provides an integrated Web-plus-TV experience with content and apps that's designed to enhance existing pay-TV services.

In addition, Google is gearing up to commercially launch its fiber-to-the-home network service, offering 1 Gbps broadband and TV programming, in Kansas City, Kan., and Kansas City, Mo., this fall.

September