Logitech Revue review: Google TV hands-on

Video: Google TV's set-top box first impressions

Image 1 of 11 Logitech Revue Homescreen
Logitech Revue: Homescreen
Image 2 of 11 Logitech Revue Search
Logitech Revue: Search
Image 3 of 11 Logitech Revue Camera
Logitech Revue: Camera
Image 4 of 11 Logitech Revue Most visited
Logitech Revue: Most visited
Image 5 of 11 Logitech Revue Browser
Logitech Revue: Browser
Image 6 of 11 Logitech Revue Mini keyboard
Logitech Revue: Mini keyboard
Image 7 of 11 Logitech Revue HD video calling
Logitech Revue: HD video calling
Image 8 of 11 Logitech Revue Apps
Logitech Revue: Apps
Image 9 of 11 Logitech Revue Logitech Media
Logitech Revue: Logitech Media
Image 10 of 11 Logitech Revue Handset
Logitech Revue: Handset
Image 11 of 11 Logitech Revue Keyboard
Logitech Revue: Keyboard

Still no word on a European release date but will it be worth the wait?

This is the Logitech Revue, the first Google TV set-top box. Bringing Google TV for those without a Sony set, it's the first of its kind and is set to be the exclusive Google TV box for sometime. Does it have the might to take on Apple TV and the Xbox 360 and how good is Google TV? Let's take a closer look.

Check out our Logitech Revue review

Logitech Revue: Set-up

The set-up of the box is pretty simple, all you'll need is the Logitech Revue itself and a controller. This can either be a full size keyboard, a mini keyboard like the Logitech diNovo or control your googlebox watching with an app available on Android or Apple iPhone.

Logitech Revue: Controllers

The most interesting of the controllers is by far the phone app. As with both the keyboards, you can instantly search, pause and play TV along with controlling the volume. The additions to the handset control are that you can also switch on and off your whole set-up and bring up a video that you're watching on your Android or iPhone onto the big screen. Handy of you've taken a video when you're out and about.

Logitech Revue: Interface

Moving on from the controllers to the interface and functionality. First impressions are that it feels very much like a blown-up Android mobile interface. It's easy to use and the icons are bold and big, making it easy to use it on your telly. The live search brings in results from your DVR recordings, programme guides and the web. A search for T3, for example, brought back the website and our YouTube channel.

Logitech Revue: Features

Another handy feature is dual screen. Similar to the Samsung 9000 Series, you can watch two things at once on the Revue. If you're watching one game of football on your DVR but want to check the scores on others, you can carry on in dual TV mode.

Scrolling through the menu's feels intuitive and very well thought out. In the main home screen there's bookmarks, for you favourite sites, channels and shows; spotlight that offers a selection of tv-optimised apps and queue allows you to set-up your own personal playlists.

Logitech Revue: Google TV apps

One of the most exciting things to come out of Google TV are the apps. If you pictured Android Market place on you TV, then you'll be disappointed. Google has announced that it will be available in 2011, but you might need to wait a bit longer for some half-decent apps.

At launch, there will be a couple of apps available from Logitech, namely Logitech Media player and Logitech HD Vid. The first will connect to any DLNA compatible device in your home and stream the content to the TV while the second allows video calling. You will have to buy an additional camera to perch on the top of your set but it works pretty well and is another string to the Revue's bow.

Logitech Revue: Conclusion

All in all the Revue is a good offering and an alternative to those who want Google TV but can't fork-out on a new Sony set. Also, it feels Google TV is still very much a fledgling venture and at the moment it's the possibilities that are exciting. No word on when we'll get the Revue or Google TV in Europe but for those in the US it's available now. For $299.99 you'll get your hands on the Logitech Revue box along with the full size keyboard.