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Monday, December 20, 2010, 07:00 am PT (10:00 am ET)

Google TV hardware delayed as the Apple TV competitor struggles - NYT

Google has reportedly asked makers of upcoming Google TV-powered television sets to cancel plans to show off devices as the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show, as the search giant is working to refine its software.

According to The New York Times, HDTV manufacturers like Toshiba, LG Electronics and Sharp were prepared to show off new televisions running the Google TV software at CES 2011 in January. Launched in November, the platform competes with the newly launched $99 Apple TV.

"Google has asked the TV makers to delay their introductions, according to people familiar with the company's plans, so it can refine the software, which has received a lukewarm reception," the report said. "The late request caught some of the manufacturers off guard."

Google TV launched to relatively poor reviews, and has faced problems such as networks blocking their Web-based content from devices running the search giant's Android-based platform. The software was introduced on a handful of devices, including a 46-inch Sony TV set and a set-top box from Logitech.

The report from the Times also suggested that Google's last-minute changes to products and their release schedule may be upsetting to its partners. It noted that the Chrome OS platform for netbooks was supposed to launch this year, but was recently delayed to 2011.

"Google has a long history of putting out new products and then revising them on the fly," the report said. "But in the consumer electronics market, companies place big, well-timed bets — to attract holiday buyers, say, or back-to-school shoppers."