That was the big Google announcement?

After much speculation about the possible release of something huge, , Google co-founder Larry Page' keynote address at the Consumer Electronics Show Friday night was anticlimactic for some--both on the conference floor and in the blogosphere.

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Google, in conjunction with Page's speech, did announce a new service that will let people rent or buy downloadable videos online, including classic and contemporary CBS TV shows and NBA basketball games. But even given the video-on-demand service's potential to dramatically change the way we watch TV, the announcement was a bit underwhelmed by the fact that the site doesn't appear to be up and running yet.

Also announced Friday was the Google Pack, a software package that includes homegrown programs like Google Talk, the Google Toolbar, the Google Desktop, Google Alerts and the Google Video Player, as well as third-party software including the Firefox browser, anti-spyware from LavaSoft, Adobe PDF Reader 7, Norton's antivirus program, Trillian Instant Messenger and RealPlayer.

Some bloggers got busy offering their takes on the new video service and software package. Others, however, seemed uninspired in a collective, "That's it? What was all the hype about?"

"I get a laugh out of all the 'this isn't anything new'/'this has been done before' posts...so had web search, mapping, and web-based e-mail, but that didn't stop Google from changing the entire industry in those three fields. It's hard to get excited about this, yeah, but they've got something up their sleeve, I bet, that's going to make everyone take notice once the service gets established."
--cc on Engadget

"So it was a big day for TV yesterday, but I guess I let myself get too excited about it because I felt rather underwhelmed by what was finally revealed...The biggest news as far as the content goes is the release of "classic" TV--The Twilight Zone, Rocky and Bullwinkle, and the original Star Trek, among others. I'm glad to see that this stuff which is rarely found on TV in syndication anymore, has been allowed on the Internet (even crippled as it is by DRM)"
--Musings of the Great Eric

"My first impression of Google Pack is great--This is something useful and seems designed with simplicity and ease-of-use in mind...It was great to see Norton Antivirus and AdAware spyware removal tools included in this pack. Is this inclusion meant to compete with Microsoft and their latest virus and spyware offerings, Windows Live Safety Center? Sounds like a shot across Steve Ballmer's bow--Get your chairs out of the way."
--Vinny Carpenter's blog

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