Sony Electronics introduced its next-gen smart TV device, the NSZ-GU1 BRAVIA Smart Stick. This looks to be the successor to the Sony Google TV boxes of the past. The Smart Stick is very slim and lightweight, almost mimicking the Chromecast form factor. It is graced with 8GB of onboard storage and, like the Chromecast, simply plugs into the MHL port of your MHL-ready television (though power is received via the supplied USB power adapter).
Sony decided to included their “award-winning voice-activated remote control,” which allows the user various methods of control. “The BRAVIA Smart Stick answers the question, ‘What’s on TV,’ with ‘whatever you want to watch’” said Jamie Marsh, TV marketing manager for Sony Electronics Home Entertainment & Sound Division. The Smart Stick brings the convenience of the Google Play Store and Google’s internet search to your television. Of course Sony is touting seamless and amazing integration with their Bravia line of televisions.
The voice-activated remote is worth the price admission, in my opinion. With the ability to simply talk to the remote and search the internet, Playstore, or television, you are saved from typing on a cumbersome keyboard (though there is a keyboard input on the remote). The Smart Stick also taps into the user’s cable or satellite, so switching inputs is a thing of the past.
Chrome, Netflix, Pandora, Amazon Video, YouTube and many more applications, are pre-loaded on the Smart Stick, making it an instant entertainment power-house. Sony’s software also allows the user picture in picture ability, which means you can surf the web while watching TV. But wait just a minute. What did we say earlier? Seamless integration with the Bravia line of TV’s? Yes, it seems the Smart Stick is proprietary to Bravia TVs, which is very sad indeed. Even so the Sony Smart Stick is certainly something to watch. Priced at $149.99 the Smart Stick is available now at Sony Stores and select retail outlets.