The Good The Sony NSZ-GS7 has a vastly improved, double-sided remote for Google TV, with a large touch pad and a full keyboard. It's a small, stylish box and the only current set-top box that supports Google TV.
The Bad The Google TV software continues to disappoint. There aren't dedicated apps for major streaming services like Amazon Instant, Hulu Plus, and MLB.TV, nor is Google's own movie rental service supported. Major content providers like ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, Comedy Central, and MTV still block Google TV's software from streaming browser-based video. And the software is still buggy and difficult to use.
The Bottom Line The Sony NSZ-GS7 has sleek hardware and an innovative remote, but it's hampered by the still too-limited and frustrating Google TV software.
Google TV has always been an ambitious idea. In its ideal form, you'd be able to access all your home theater content -- including your cable/satellite box, streaming video services and content from the Web -- in a single user interface, powered by Google search. It's a great pitch, but it tends to fall apart in the implementation: it's buggy, true DVR integration really only works for Dish Network subscribers, and it still lacks dedicated apps for services like Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant, and MLB.TV.
Sony's NSZ-GS7 ($200 list, available July 22) is the company's second Google TV box, and it's a significant improvement over the
But even with the improved controller, the NSZ-GS7 can't overcome Google TV's shortcomings. There are still too many caveats on all its premiere features to be recommendable, save for the most diehard (and patient) tinkerers. The NSZ-GS7 proves that Google TV hardware can improve, but what it really needs is a software overhaul.
YouTube TV will launch Roku and Apple TV apps in early 2018
Cable TV cord-cutters expecting YouTube TV's full app for Roku and Apple TV devices this year will have to wait a little longer.
Get a Roku Streaming Stick Plus for $48
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Philo charges just $16 for 35 channels, but no sports or locals
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Epix Cast streams to TVs, no new hardware required
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Starz app comes to Amazon Fire TV
But the HBO competitor's app is still not Comcast-compatible.
Hulu will soon combine live TV, on-demand to smack down cable (hands-on)
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Bring on the popcorn! Mubi makes its Roku debut
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Most DVR owners are recording live sports, survey says
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DirecTV Now beset by user complaints on launch day
AT&T's new live TV streaming service debuted Wednesday with a free seven-day trial and attractive $35 introductory price, but plenty of first-time users are experiencing trouble.
PlayStation Vue comes to Apple TV
Sony's PlayStation Vue is available now on Apple TV, bringing with it services such as ESPN and CNN.
PlayStation Vue now on Android TV
Android TV is the latest platform to get Sony's subscription TV service and the company says it will be coming to web browsers soon.