Here’s a piece of news that sounds very appealing to me:

According to Financial Times, television is set to take a new form with the launch of Google and Intel’s Smart TV. The two computer giants are expected to announce an important breakthrough within this week.

Smart TV is not your regular cable or satellite TV. This new platform will have integrated Internet services that will allow you to watch web TV right in your own living room. You can be able to watch movies provided by online streaming websites such as Netflix, CinemaNow, and Vudu, tune in to Internet radio channels, or you can watch photos online from your TV screen. One of the greatest parts of this innovation is being able to add social networking features such as Twitter and Facebook. So basically, the goal of these companies is to “integrate web-based content for living room entertainment”.

Here’s more:

“Samsung, Sony, LG, Vizio, Sharp and Panasonic are all releasing internet-enabled TVs this year with features such as Skype video calls, Netflix movie streaming and on-screen widgets that offer news, weather, financial quotes, social networking and internet radio.”

I think this is indeed a breakthrough. I just love the idea of relaxing in my living room while still being able to keep track of what’s happening in cyberspace. Of course I can always log on to the internet, but the idea of being away from you’re your computer (and work) and being able to be with the family somehow takes the stress away.

Will Smart TV be widely accepted?

According to Eric Kim, head of Intel’s Digital Home group, they are seeing “the beginning of explosive growth.” They are now getting ready for a massive retail launch of Smart TV devices within this year.

Chris Nutall of Financial Times wrote that this new innovation “could prove popular if it also promises advertising revenues for TV manufacturers”.

Kurt Scherf, principal analyst at research firm Parks Associates concludes:

“Consumer electronics manufacturers want a piece of this [advertising] pie and Google is the player in this very crowded space that can immediately offer them revenue share”.

The effect of this new innovation on online video advertising is yet to be determined but I’m guessing it’s heading towards positive results.