Flingo CEO Was Right About Google TV: "It's All About the Apps"

[ Flingo CEO Ashwin Navin on This Week in Startups. ]

Google TV has come a long way since it first launched in October 2010. On a special connected TV-themed episode of This Week in Startups in July, television app maker Flingo founder and BitTorrent President Ashwin Navin said Google TV hadn't taken off yet because of price, noting that competitors like Roku -- starts at $59 -- and Apple TV -- $99 -- sell their devices for less, and also stressed the importance of apps.

With Google TV being one of the first open ecosystem's in the television industry where anyone can build a Google TV-optimized website and submit apps to the Android marketplace to play on Google TV, Ashwin said he saw great opportunities for apps on Google TV.

At the time, apps were not as prevalent, but the new update brings not only a redesign, but also more apps, letting Android developers bring existing mobile apps or new apps to TV.  Ashwin says that people will get the best experience if every website in the world has a TV version and that every website should be TV-optimized. 

What initially made the Google TV a bit pricier is its advanced software and hardware, which Ashwin noted is one of the fastest processors in the television market. The Logitech Revue, which cost $300 when it first launched, now costs $99, while The Sony Internet TV, powered by Google TV, costs $499. 

Ashwin said that another initial issue with Google TV was that people didn't want a keyboard in their living room -- he says we have enough keyboards as it is.   

San Francisco-based Flingo, founded in 2008 by Ashwin and David Harrison, is an application enabler for Internet-connected TVs, blu-ray players and Set-top boxes.


Ashwin Navin, CEO
Twitter: @ashwinnavin 
Website: http://www.ashwinnavin.org/ 

Website: http://flingo.tv/