Recently, we noticed a Sony USB-stick pass through the FCC and thought it was Sony’s new Chromecast competitor. It appears Sony will not be competing with Google, but taking the Chromecast design and implementing it on Google TV.
The BRAVIA Smart Stick will connect to 2013 BRAVIA televisions through the MHL connection and will use a HDMI to USB cable to charge. Sony has rejected to talk about other televisions and if it will be available on earlier BRAVIA models.
Currently the BRAVIA Smart Stick will allow users to connect and import some Google TV apps, including Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video, YouTube and music players like Pandora and Spotify.
Sony did not say anything about Chromecast functionality, but this may be coming at a later stage when the Chromecast SDK is available to both developers and partners. We still are not sure if Google actually wants an open platform the Chromecast, considering it is trying to lure in potential TV partners who like closed platforms.
Along with the BRAVIA Smart Stick, Sony will bundle a universal remote, allowing users to control browsing on the Google TV stick. This idea is obviously a little push to Chromecast, but it makes Google TV a cheaper service and not a full television.
It would be nice to see Sony offer an app for their smartphones to control the TV and perhaps having something similar to the Chromecast, where the user would be able to cast local content from the smartphone to the TV.
Sony will announce this official on September 15.