Google H840 media streamer hits FCC to potentially replace Nexus Q

May 18, 2013
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Google's short-lived Nexus Q has already been left out of the Google Play Music All Access action, but there looks to be a successor in the pipeline, with a new Google media player spotted in FCC testing. The Google H840 (product code H2G2-42, an apparent play on The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) WiFi-testing listing has been pared back thanks to a confidentiality request, but the wireless report does confirm that it "functions as a media player" with 2.4GHz WiFi b/g/n connectivity.

Unfortunately there are no test photos, so we don't know what the Google H840 looks like. The report suggests it was tested with a USB-connected Dell monitor, though that's presumably to access either the LCD's USB hub or its memory card slot, since that particular model doesn't support video input over USB.

Anything else is, at this stage, speculative, though given the launch of Google Play Music All Access this past week at I/O, some sort of Sonos-style streaming box would seem an obvious guess. That could be hooked up to a set of external speakers or alternatively have onboard speakers and amplification.

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Google isn't the only company tipped to be working on a streaming media device. Earlier this month, it was rumored that Amazon's hardware lab is developing a wireless audio adapter which could be used with its own cloud music locker service.

The Google H840 would presumably be a more focused device than the Nexus Q, which was unveiled at I/O in 2012 and then swiftly killed off as market feedback proved uncertain. The orb-shaped streamer was intended to funnel YouTube videos, music, and other content direct to a TV, with communal playlist control from multiple Android-powered phones and tablets.

However, a combination of high price - partly because Google intended it to be manufactured in the US - and confusing purpose meant the Nexus Q project was axed. Earlier this week, it was confirmed that Google would not be officially supporting the streamer with the All Access subscription music jukebox service.

The H840 (its H2G2-42 product code a combination of the fan abbreviation for Hitchhiker's Guide and the "meaning of life": the number 42) looks to be the second attempt at the market, though when Google will actually unveil it officially remains to be seen.

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VIA: TabletGuide


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