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Logitech says was too bullish on Google TV

Fri, 11/18/2011 - 6:03am
Logitech, which lost tens of millions of dollars building set-top boxes for Google TV, would back the project again, but would be much more cautious, its chief executive said.

Google TV, which comes built in on certain Sony Corp (6758.T) TV models and on Logitech set-top boxes, allows consumers to access online videos and websites on their TVs, as well as to play specialized apps such as video games.

Google does not disclose how many users it has for Google TV, which was launched with great fanfare last year, but some analysts say that version 1.0 of the product was a flop.

"Google TV is a great concept, but the product was not mature at the launch," Logitech CEO Guerrino de Luca told Reuters in an interview on the sidelines of an investor conference in Barcelona.

"Embracing the platform was a good idea," De Luca said, adding the company had, however, overinvested in making set-top boxes for the platform, causing it major losses.

He said set-top boxes for Google TV, coupled with a failed revamp of European retail operations, in total cost the company around $100 million.

"On the bottom line they are of a similar size," he said.

Last month Google said it was making another push to bring its Web savvy to television sets, hoping to tap into a vast new market, despite consumers' lukewarm reaction to one of its initial offerings.

(Reporting By Tarmo Virki; Editing by Will Waterman)

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