Report: Google Developing Android-Powered Game Console

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As if Google didn’t already have enough on its plate, the Web giant is reportedly looking to get into the video game hardware market with a new Ouya-like console running its Android mobile operating system, according to a new report.

The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed people “familiar with the matter,” reported on Friday that Google is aiming to spread Android beyond smartphones and tablets to compete against rivals like Apple. In addition to the game console, Google is reportedly developing an Android smartwatch, as well as a second version of its Android-powered Nexus Q streaming device.

Google will design and market the devices itself, instead of working with partners, and release “at least one of them this fall,” according to the report. A Google spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday.

News of the Google game system comes as the highly anticipated Android-based Ouya console went on sale this week, amidst less-than-stellar reviews. Google has reportedly been monitoring the efforts of Ouya, which raised $8.6 million on Kickstarter last year for its sub-$100 console.

But the decision to develop a similar system is largely motivated by Google’s desire to remain competitive with Apple, which is said to be working on its own video game console that would be integrated with its next Apple TV product, the newspaper noted. At this point, Google is also finishing up the next version of Android, widely referred to as Key Lime Pie, which is expected to be released in the fall.

The company is also developing low-cost Android smartphones, which it plans to release in emerging markets, a move Apple is also rumored to be considering. On top of phones, watches, and game consoles, Google is also aiming to get Android on all kinds of other devices, like laptops and refrigerators, the paper said.

By Angela Moscaritolo, PCMag


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