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LG, Samsung Join Google TV Alliance Ahead of Product Rollout

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Jan. 5 (Bloomberg) -- LG Electronics Inc., Samsung Electronics Co. and MediaTek Inc. are joining Google Inc.’s Internet-TV coalition and plan to begin unveiling new products during next week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

LG plans to showcase products at the conference, with Samsung unveiling TVs later this year, Google said today in a blog posting. Google TV, introduced in 2010, also has the support of Marvell Technology Group Ltd. and Sony Corp. Vizio Inc., another existing partner, will hold private demonstrations of new products at the electronics show as well.

“Google TV is about bringing new entertainment and innovation from the Web to TV,” Mountain View, California-based Google said on its blog. “Our team along with our partners are pleased to bring more Google TV powered products to more people, across more devices in more countries in 2012.”

Google is shoring up support for the effort following slow initial sales for Google TV products. A lack of authorized content from media companies has made it harder to attract consumers to the idea. And one early partner, the set-top-box maker Logitech International SA, backed away from the coalition after disappointing orders.

New Version

Still, the platform has gained popularity since an updated version debuted in October, Google said. The company develops the software for the service and relies on manufacturers of TVs and other electronics to build products that work with the technology. Google is counting on the lineup to give it a foothold in consumers’ living rooms and challenge products from Apple Inc. and Microsoft Corp.

“Since launching the update, we’ve seen our activation rates more than double,” Google said. “New features and new apps are coming to the living room via Google TV almost every day. We now have more than 150 apps, which developers have specifically built for TV.”

Samsung had said in November that it was close to reaching an agreement to make televisions that run Google TV. LG also was expected to unveil a TV with the technology at the Consumer Electronics Show, people familiar with the matter said that month.

Google shares fell 1.4 percent to $659.01 at the close in New York. The stock gained 8.7 percent last year.

To contact the reporters on this story: Brian Womack in San Francisco at bwomack1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tom Giles at tgiles5@bloomberg.net

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