Pros Great searching capabilities and works with existing cable provider
Cons IR blaster controlled and will not allow Logitech remote control use
Summary Okay let me break this down to you very simply. I read reviews before I buy any product. Whether it be here on Amazon or Best Buy or CNET or Consumer Reports, I read and research and think and then browse and research more. I debated over and over whether to throw in the towel and sign on to the Google revolution but refused to do it until I saw a product that seemed worthy. After lots of research, I decided to try this one. I have owned a Roku first and second generation box, a Vudu box, a first and currently own latest Apple TV, a smart Blu Ray player and a 55 inch Sony LED smart TV. I feel my smart TV and Blu Ray are not up to speed with Google or a web browser so I looked for easier product. Set up on this was easy and took 15 minutes out of the box. I paired it with my Sony TV and Audio system and it worked great.
In reading the reviews on many sites I found this product was discredited for many reasons mostly lag times and applications and software sophistication. I do not disagree it has certain lag when browsing but in general and let me make this clear as I have seen this with other products, this all has to do with your internet connection speeds. If you have a slow connection of any sort, of course there will be lagging with any product. I have this product wireless on a Verizon Fios Quantum network through a Motorola Fios Box. There is barely any lag times and matter of fact the picture looks outstanding. Not to say these other reviewers did not know what they were talking about, but they don't know the full capabilities of a WiFi product if their network stinks. This box is both fast and sophisticated and couples with your cable provider to let you in on various programming along with giving you full search capabilities through Google. The remote is unreal and is both button and touch pad and takes your box to the next level. The applications are similar to other smart products with Amazon Prime, Flixster, Netflix as well as allowing you to access your Google Play and Youtube accounts for media and movies. I did not find any lag times or stalling and in fact it was seamless. The search was the same way, seamless and intuitive. The browser was equally impressive with the exception of any flash players which froze the screen temporarily. So far owning this a few days it does everything I bought it for. I have yet to try Amazon Prime or Netflix but can't imagine I'll face a problem. Like I mentioned, it all has to do with the speed and set up of your network and connections and products you have this running through. The one complaint I have with this unit, it is controlled by an IR blaster with IR signals. Trying to pair it with a Universal remote such as my Logitech Harmony One will not work and in fact will not allow it so you do have to use the Sony remote to turn this on and off. That to me is no big deal and can be worked around. My advice, do your own research and try products out before listening to the masses. At times I have overlooked products because of poor reviews but in the end the products have become winners and I regretted listening. In my book this is not that bad a product and time will tell if it delivers.
Pros Some decent apps
Remote is effective and functional and bluetooth is so much more convenient than IR
Browser is decent but not great
With the right apps I can do everything I need
Access to all my windows network files
Cons Not very fast
No gmail or gtalk apps
Not a lot of compatible apps yet though the important ones are there
Can't access it from my Windows network
Summary I've had mine for about 5 months and am ready to post my review. I support the Google tv concept but have been disappointed with previous iterations and with other Sony devices and while this isn't quite as good as having a full on laptop connected to your tv, it's not too far off and clearly much cheaper. I give it a 4 because for the price if really does everything i need. I have a torrent client on it. Can stream anything from my tablet and smartphone. Can control all functions from my tablet and smartphone. I use a wireless keyboard with a kvm switch to control both my gtv and ps3 from one keyboard. The browser does lack some features but I can easily send any page or YouTube video from my phone, desktop or tablet to the TV with one click. PIP is convenient, and my whole media center had really been consolidated. So all in all, I'm really happy with it. It was an impulse buy i feared I'd regret and expected to but I have to say it's a nice surprise.
Pros The keyboard/remote
Good for online video
Small and stylish
Cons Very limited range of apps available
Limited online content in Australia
"Live TV" feature needs another stand alone set top box
Struggles to play some local HD content
Local playback sometimes goes out of audio/video sync
Browser is slow
Summary I got this as part of an offer with my Sony TV and honestly, I would not recommend paying for it.
First of all, there is not a whole lot you can do on it that I can't do on a Smart TV. You can access online content, but I could do that on my TV. You can browse the internet, but I can do that on my TV (it's generally too slow to seriously use on either). You can play local video files, but I can do that on my TV. You need to download a seperate program (Plex) to be able to stream videos from a server, like I can do out of the box with my TV. Btw, Plex has a terrible, complicated interface that somehow has less features than my TV's player. The only thing this has going for it is that it can play some files that the TV cannot without transcoding. Yet, it struggles to play much of my HD files anyway. And the SD files that didn't play on my TV all loose audio/video sync at 50m on this thing for some bizarre reason (they play fine on my PC).
Maybe in the US Google TV is great and gives you access to heaps of content you otherwise wouldn't see, but here in Australia this is simply not the case.
In the end this thing sits awkwardly between a Smart TV and a HTPC, not as simple and user friendly as a Smart TV, yet not as feature rich, fast, or customizable as a HTPC. Ultimately, the worst of both worlds.