Google enters the PC to TV arena

Google today made its own contribution to solving the PC to TV problem with the release of Google Media Server. The Windows-only software works in conjunction with Google’s desktop search application – Google Desktop – to locate various media (photos, music and video) stored on your PC and make it available for streaming over a home network to any UPnP compatible or DLNA ‘certified’ device, such as a PlayStation 3.

See our recently published guide: DLNA certified: how your computer, cellphone, games console, media streamer and other devices can play nicely together

Google enters the PC to TV arenaWhile many UPnP server solutions already exist for Windows (it’s a pity Google hasn’t targeted Mac users), Google Media Server does bring a few specific features to the table. Namely support for Internet-based content from its photo sharing service Picasa, along with videos hosted on YouTube (using H.264 not Flash Video). From this we can conclude that Google Media Server is designed to make Google’s desktop search application that bit more useful, as well as offer another means of accessing YouTube on a TV.

Of course, Google Media Server could also be another sign that the company is testing the waters for a much more ambitious living room strategy — see Google wants to do for TV what it did for the Web.

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last100 is edited by Steve O'Hear. Aside from founding last100, Steve is co-founder and CEO of Beepl and a freelance journalist who has written for numerous publications, including TechCrunch, The Guardian, ZDNet, ReadWriteWeb and Macworld, and also wrote and directed the Silicon Valley documentary, In Search of the Valley. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

2 Responses to “Google enters the PC to TV arena”

  1. if it does a good job of on-the-fly format conversion for stuff I’ve obtained (eg from Bittorrent) with a variety of codecs and containers, and can stream DVDs to my Xbox360 then Windows Media Center and AppleTV become very dubious propositions.
    If however it can’t then this is no better than enabling Media Sharing on a Windows Home Server or Vista PC

  2. Steve O'Hear, editor says:

    @ Offbeatmammal

    I’m afraid it doesn’t transcode files, as far as I’m aware. Although there are a number of other UPnP AV servers that do that. See the our DLNA certified guide that we link to in the post.