Sony NSZ-GS7 Internet Player with Google TV review

Price when reviewed

Google TV has been around in the US for some time now, but the company has delayed introducing the concept to the UK so far. In this small Sony box, however, the service finally makes its UK debut. The idea behind it is a simple one: it takes your regular Freeview, satellite or cable TV content and adds internet streaming and web browsing to it – it takes a standard television and adds smart TV features.

It does this by passing your the HDMI signal from your regular TV set-top box through input and output ports on the rear to your TV at the end of the chain. The box runs Android – a heavily modified version of Honeycomb 3.2 to be specific – and this is what you use to access the internet. The connection is via an Ethernet port on the rear or built-in single-band 802.11n Wi-Fi.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Internet Player with Google TV

On first boot, you’re asked to sign in to your Google account, or set one up, and anyone who’s used an Android phone or tablet will be at home immediately. Apps are installed via the Google Play store and launched via a vertically scrolling launcher. Web browsing, meanwhile, is carried out via Google Chrome. There’s no widget-based desktop, though; hit the home button on the remote control and a row of shortcut apps pop up along the bottom of the screen, overlaid on top of whatever activity you happen to be indulging in at that time.

The row of apps displays a clock and Android notifications on the left, and links to live TV (via the HDMI input), the Play store, Chrome, plus YouTube and Sony Entertainment apps. You can sign in and buy music and SD/HD movies (or rent them) through this portal in much the same way that you can on Sony’s Android tablets.

Sony NSZ-GS7 Internet Player with Google TV - interface 2

One of the Internet Player’s key features is to provide internet access – via the browser or an app – while you continue to watch TV. It does this via a picture-in-picture box in the top-right corner of the screen, which displays the content from the HDMI input on the box’s rear. You can use this to look up stuff on the internet while you’re watching TV, or to keep an eye on the football while watching a streamed program on BBC iPlayer.

The USB 2 slots on the rear, meanwhile, allow you to connect accessories or play video from local storage. Sony says the box will play most file types, including MKVs, aside from AVCHDs, and it played our Full HD MP4 test files smoothly. However, we couldn’t get any of our test MKV files to play at all.


Display typeN/A
Screen sizeN/A

Software and OS support

Software suppliedN/A


Dimensions width204
Dimensions depth130
Dimensions height35
Dimensions204 x 130 x 35mm (WDH)

Audio format support

MP3 supportyes
WMA supportyes
AAC supportyes
OGG supportyes
FLAC supportno
WAV supportyes
ASF supportyes

Video format support

DivX supportyes
XviD supportyes
H.264 supportyes
WMV-HD supportyes
WMV supportyes
AVI supportyes
MP4 supportyes

Ports and communications

Remote control?yes
UPnP media server?yes
802.11a supportno
802.11b supportno
802.11g supportno
802.11 draft-n supportno
Ethernet interfaceyes
Wired adapter speed100Mbits/sec
RCA (phono) outputs0
3.5mm audio jacks0
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports1
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports0

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