Italian telecom TIM has collaborated with Google to develop the first Italian set-top box, TIMvision Decoder, with Android TV. It is one of the first European telecoms to put Android TVs in their set-top box. Users get a cable decoder along with the same TV apps and games that are available on other Android TVs.
It is 4K-ready, with dual-band radios (2.4GHz and 5GHz), integrated DVBT2, and Bluetooth 4.1. The remote has an infrared sensor in addition to the standard smart TV remote hardware such as voice control. In theory the remote should support Bluetooth, as infrared probably won’t be used for voice, but the sensor is relatively cheap and may be a nice additional feature for some users. The hardware itself is oddly shaped, with the bottom of a cone.
The device should be launched at some point in June, and new customers should be able to take advantage of a promotional offer for 2 euros a month. Existing customers will have to wait for information.
A new frontier in digital entertainment available on your home TV screen has been crossed in Italy. This initiative – says Daniela Biscarini, Head of TIM Multimedia Entertainment – is the result of an important collaboration with Google which allows us to offer TIMvision customers a new experience combining content and Web in an unprecedented way. The project is part of TIM’s strategy to disseminate innovative services and confirms our role as a technological enabler, with the aim of bringing our customers increasingly into touch with good quality streamed content and the new ways of enjoying it made possible by super-fast broadband networks