Despite relatively positive early reviews, Asus will stop producing the Nexus Player Android TV set-top box, according to a vague statement from Google.
Third-party resellers like Best Buy have sold the Nexus Player since launch, and Google’s dedicated online store even restocked the device briefly back in April 2016, but now it seems Android TV’s premiere device is done.
A Google spokesperson told The Verge that the “Nexus Player is still available on some retail sites,” indicating that when it sells out, the device won’t be restocked.
Launched in late 2014, the Nexus Player, similar to Google’s other Nexus devices, was designed do showcase what an Android TV set-top box should look like. Google’s Android TV operating system is also the successor to Google TV, the Mountain View, California-based tech giant’s first attempt at a TV operating system that never really took off.
Android TV is now available pre-loaded in televisions from Sony and Sharp, the Nvidia Shield (though it’s difficult to find one in Canada) and a variety of third-party lesser-known set-top boxes. A cottage industry of illegal streams and pirated movies, facilitated by media platform Kodi – originally known as XBMC (Xbox Media Centre) in the mid 2000s – has sprouted up around Google’s Android TV platform as well, likely due to the operating system’s open nature.
So while Google’s Nexus Player may be finished, the device seems to have accomplished Google’s lofty goal of legitimizing Android TV as a viable operating system.
The Nexus player currently sells for about $109 CAD and is still available at some retailers like Walmart.