updated 03:01 pm EST, Tue November 20, 2012
Google prepping open standard for media sharing
Google is said to be working on an open alternative to the AirPlay functionality seen in Mac OS X and iOS devices, enabling owners of mobile devices to interact with and beam contact to connected televisions. Details on the new standard are scarce, but Google is said to be working with a range of device and software vendors with the goal of "[moving] the whole industry forward." It is possible that the standard would involve solely Android and Google TV products at first, but the goal of a truly open standard could mean that it would be featured on other platforms and other devices as well.
The report comes from GigaOM, which spoke with Google product manager Timbo Drayson. Drayson said that the AirPlay-like functionality Google rolled out for YouTube last week -- which allows Android smartphones and tablets to beam content to Google TV devices -- was only the beginning.
Going forward, Google is said to envision a standard in which users can not only beam content from one device to another, but also receive supplemental content on a second screen, much as is the case with Microsoft's Smart Glass feature for its Xbox 360 console or Nintendo's TVii feature.
Apple sells more than a million of its Apple TV devices per quarter, making it by far the most successful digital streaming device. A number of other manufacturers have tried to bring AirPlay's functionality to Android, but the lack of an established standard has stymied some efforts.