Logitech pulls plug on Google TV set-top boxes
Logitech has pulled the plug on Google TV set-top boxes, saying consumers just aren't ready for the device which merges television and the Internet.
"Google TV or the child of Google TV or the grandchild of Google TV will happen," said Guerrino De Luca, the chairman and acting chief executive of the Swiss computer peripherals maker.
"The integration of television and the Internet is inevitable," De Luca said at an event for analysts and investors held in New York on Wednesday. "But the idea that it would happen overnight in Christmas 2010 was very misguided.
"Google TV is a great concept," he said. "Google TV has the potential to completely disrupt the living room.
"Except that was not the case when we launched Logitech Revue."
Google and Logitech unveiled the Logitech Revue set-top box in October of last year with the then Logitech chief executive promising it would "help redefine the user experience in the digital living room."
The Revue, which routes Web content to television sets, went on sale for $300 but the price was later cut to just $99 because of sluggish sales.
De Luca also said the Revue was not entirely ready when it hit the market.
"Logitech Revue was launched with some -- I wouldn't call it beta properly -- but a software that was definitely not complete and not tuned to what the consumer wants in the living room," he said.
"To make a long story short, we thought we had invented sliced bread and we just made them," he said. "We built a lot because we expected everybody to line up for Christmas and buy this box at $300.
"That was a big mistake," De Luca said.
Nevertheless, he said he would do it again.
"I would definitely want to help Google establish Google TV," he said. "But with a significantly smaller and more prudent approach."
Logitech said that operational "miscues" in the Europe, the Middle East and Africa region and the Revue had cost the company well over $100 million in operating profit.
Logitech said it expected its inventory of the set-top boxes to run out before the end of fiscal 2012 and it would not introduce a replacement.
Google TV is also available on television sets manufactured by Japanese electronics giant Sony and Blu-ray disc players.
© 2011 AFP