The initial unpopularity of Google TV devices ties into a wider rivalry that will become more and more important in the next 2-3 years, as Google battles with Apple, Sony and others for control of the living room, and specifically digital TVs. Sony CEO Howard Stringer has been talking about his company’s plans: “There’s a tremendous amount of R&D going into a different kind of TV set. That’s what we’re all looking for,” he said at a Wall Street Journal event reported by the newspaper. Stringer added that this filters into Sony’s plans to offer a “four screen” platform for entertainment and applications. “I spent the last five years building a platform so I can compete against Steve Jobs. It’s finished, and it’s launching now.”

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