Google may be the next major tech company to jump on the TV streaming service bandwagon along with the likes of Apple, Intel and Sony, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal. The search engine giant has reportedly approached media companies about licensing content for a service that would stream traditional TV shows via the Web.
Details on Google’s plans are scarce at this time, but the company has reportedly demonstrated the product for an unnamed TV programmer in recent months. This wouldn’t be the first time Google attempted to delve into the Web-streaming TV space, but the rumors come at a time when the traditional television ecosystem is being brought into question. The Journal reports that Google tried to pitch a similar streaming service to media companies two years ago, although those discussions didn’t get very far.
But now, however, the popularity of services such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime and HBO GO among others may be more prevalent than ever. Just two months ago, a survey from Nielsen reported that more than five million homes in the U.S. have abandoned the conventional cable setup for online streaming services. That’s a significant increase from the two million number reported in 2007.
The notion that Google may launch its own TV streaming service represents only one of several efforts to broaden its presence in the entertainment industry. Within the past year, the Google-owned YouTube announced that it would partner with select broadcasters to launch paid subscription networks.The company also unveiled its own music streaming service to compete with the likes of Spotfiy at this year’s Google I/O, and whispers of a Google gaming console that could rival the Ouya hit the Web earlier this summer.