Many Android based media streamers have been announced and demonstrated at various trade shows over the last year. We covered the Patriot Box Office Alpine which was on show at the 2011 Computex.
While the details of the SoC powering the PBO Alpine haven't been officially revealed, other Android running media players haven't been so coy. The TizzBird F30 is quite popular in the Asian markets. Based on a 1 GHz ARM processor with 3D acceleration, it runs Android 2.3. However, consumers in the US haven't had the opportunity to purchase an Android based media player yet. The Nixeus Fusion XS is not expected to be up for order until December 2011, and Xtreamer Prodigy will only get Android 2.2 in a future firmware upgrade (probably as a dual boot option).

Sigma Designs announced Android support in the 865x series back in October 2009, and the first videos of 8656 running Android began to surface in November 2010.

TViX started development of the Xroid A1 soon after. The efforts were made public at CES 2011.

After many months of development, the Xroid A1 started hitting the hands of the European consumers last month. Now, it is ready to hit the US market. Based on the SMP 8657, it runs on Android 2.2. The inbuilt browser doesn't have Flash. The processing power is similar to that of the 8654 / 8655 used in the WDTV Live / Live Hub / Live Plus. However, it includes a Imagination Technologies SGX 530 core (which is not present even on the SMP 8670 used in the WDTV Live Streaming Media Player).

A good starting point for the Xroid A1 would be the local media compatibility of the WD TV Live series. The version of Android running on the system is 2.2. The inbuilt browser, however, doesn't support Adobe Flash. Unlike other media streamers which implement a dual boot solution for Android support, Xroid A1's media player function is seamlessly integrated into the OS. A TViX app market also offers curated apps for the users. Obviously, it is also possible to sideload apps.

With Google TV, Google tried to bring the Android experience to the big screen. It is fair to say that Google's intent to bring people to spend more of their TV time online didn't meet with much success. However, I believe this doesn't mean that people don't want smart apps on the TV. In this context, it is efforts from the smaller players like TViX and Nixeus that may end up providing more satisfaction to consumers. Hit up the source link below for more information about the TViX Xroid A1.

What sort of Android apps would make sense on the TV? How much will consumers be ready to spend for Android on the big screen? Chime in with your thoughts below.

Source: AVS Forum

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  • captinamerica - Monday, October 24, 2011 - link

    I'm a huge fan of android based operating devices. I think great game would be a race car game such as asphalt or angry birds. Something nice and simple to kill some time. I have had the Boxee Box for a number of years now and I love it. You can learn more about media streamers at http://bestmediastreamers.com. Great site with reviews and insight into the most popular media streamers. Reply
  • vision33r - Monday, October 24, 2011 - link

    I doubt this thing would sell. The name is so absurd and geeky it isn't as cool and chic like Boxie, Google TV, or Apple TV... Simplicity sells. Reply
  • Landiepete - Wednesday, October 26, 2011 - link

    And very expensive to boot. I built a mini box based on Brazos, with W7 on it. It runs anything and everything, and with K-Lite or CCCP there's a wealth of codecs available. It does email, any browser you like, you- and other tubes, you name it, it does it.

    I tried 3 or 4 of these media boxes in the past, and every single one has got something really screwed up : no DVD menus, not able to play DVD's with episodes on it, no MKV, it's always something. Rubbish.

    Now they're throwing them at us again with a new OS. I'm willing to bet you'll get the same old bugs on a new OS.
    Reply

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