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Sony Smart Stick confirmed as Google TV-equipped Chromecast rival

Tom Morgan
17 Sep 2013
Sony Smart Stick
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Sony has confirmed the existence of its Google TV-powered Smart Stick, an HDMI dongle set to take on Google's own Chromecast

Sony is set to take on Google's Chromecast dongle with Smart Stick, a device of its own set to run the Google TV operating system.

Smart Stick was first spotted on an official Sony blog, where it was listed with the product code NSZ-GU1. Sony pulled the post, but not before Engadget could spot it and make it public.

The device plugs directly into an HDMI input on the back of your TV, giving you access to on-demand content from the likes of YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Video, Vudu, Crackle and Video Unlimited. Unlike Chromecast, it will come bundled with a remote control and won't require an Android tablet or smartphone to start streaming video.

Sony is no stranger to Google TV, having released the NSZ-GS7 Internet Player last year. We weren't blown away by its features or usability, but perhaps the latest iteration of Google TV will be a little easier to use.

Sony has now told trade magazine Variety about its initial plans for Smart Stick, revealing that it will cost a not-insignificant $150. That makes it around $115 more expensive than Google's own Chromecast dongle.

According to the Variety report, Smart Stick will only be compatible with 2013 Sony Bravia TVs like the KDL-40W905a. Paired with a high price, Sony could struggle to make an impact against the bargain basement Chromecast dongle.

We'll know more next week when Sony makes the Smart Stick official.