Google TV at CES was underwhelming

While there were several Google TV products at CES last week, we’re still not convinced it is the next big thing.

The most important Google TV news came from LG, which was the biggest name to offer a Google-powered TV set at the show.

But instead of coming across as LG’s big new strategy, it seemed to be more like LG was saying, “Yeah, alright. We’ll give this a try.”

The manufacturer will offer 47-inch and 55-inch models, with 1080p and 3D capabilities. They will be powerful sets, but the question is whether there’s really any extra value there beyond LG’s own proprietary Internet-connected TV platform.

LG, like the other major manufacturers, has its own TV operating system and does not need Google. It’s a very different space than, say, a smartphone or a computer. Google has failed to demonstrate that having a universal operating system for TV sets is worthwhile.

On the other hand, Vizio was also bullish on Google TV. The company has developed its own skin for the Android-based platform and seems to actually plan on using it as its major Internet TV platform in the future.

What’s even more surprising, though, is that Google itself did not have more to offer at CES. The online giant did not offer any major updates to the software, aside from a partnership with the cloud-based game service OnLive.

Google still needs to show that Google TV has a competitive advantage. Unfortunately that did not happen at CES.