Android TV has had a pretty rocky life, and right now the only device even worth mentioning the NVIDIA Shield TV. All of Google’s TV focus has been on Chromecast, and it’s worked so far, especially if you also count things like TVs that have Google Cast built in.
But Google is still doing some work on Android TV, even though they don’t have a flagship product to show it off. However, according to an FCC filing it looks like we might see a new hybrid Chromecast/Android TV device fairly soon. It’s not clear if Google directly has anything to do with this device since the filing is from a Chinese company, but the large G branding raises some questions.
The filing shows a Chromecast type device that’s a little more stocky than the regular Chromecast, and there’s a remote that comes with it. If you’ve used a Chromecast before you know that everything gets streamed from your phone, so there’s no need for a standalone remote. The only time you’d want a remote is if you had a full TV interface that was independent of your phone, a la Android TV. The remote has Google Assistant built in, adding even more credibility to that idea.
There are more questions than answers about this device, but it’s interesting nonetheless. It’s similar in design to Amazon’s successful Fire TV line and might give us another compelling Android TV experience, or it could be another mediocre device that fades away a few weeks after launch. Either way, we’ll keep an eye out.