Competitor Google TV suffers setbacks as Apple announces strong demand for its media streaming device.
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As Google stumbles with the launch of Google TV, Apple says it is close to selling 1 million units of the new Apple TV, which made its debut in September.
With competition rising fast between Google and Apple, the latter company has apparently decided to grab some attention for its product for connecting the Internet to the home television, while Google is struggling to get its software working properly. Apple said Tuesday that it expects sales of its product to top 1 million units this week.
Google introduced Google TV in May, with Sony unveiling in October an Internet-enabled, high-definition TV powered by the software. Earlier that month, Logitech introduced the Revue, a separate box running Google TV that attaches to an HDTV.
After that flurry of activity, Google has had to deal with unexpected problems. Content providers, namely ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and Viacom, have taken steps to block Google TV's access to their premium TV shows. Their fear is that Google TV will encourage people to view more Internet video, which would siphon attention from the shows they produce for broadcasters and cable companies.
In addition, Google has asked TV manufacturers to hold back on introducing products with the software, giving Google more time to refine it, The New York Timesreported. As a result, the Consumer Electronics Show next month in Las Vegas won't be the coming-out party as planned by Google. TV makers expected to unveil products at CES included Toshiba, LG Electronics, and Sharp.
Apple is apparently looking to gain some momentum at Google's expense in releasing the latest numbers. While Google's setback is keeping one rival temporarily on the sidelines, there are other competitors moving along nicely. One is Roku, which is believed to have reached sales of 1 million units of its namesake Internet-to-TV box during the 2009 holiday season. Roku launched its first box capable of streaming Neflix video from the Web in May 2008.