Bad news for Google TV users – that loophole you (hopefully) were utilizing to watch standard programming has now been closed. CrunchGear reports that Fancast has been blocked by Google TV, eliminating access to NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, and basically anything else not owned by Viacom. Add to the mix a ban blocking Google TV from using Hulu and the product’s worth is rapidly decreasing.
The various networks seem determined to deny any access to Internet TV. Claiming worry over pirated links being displayed when users are browsing, Google is still anxiously trying to convince them to budge. It’s obvious the traditional TV programmers feel a mounting pressure — consumers want to watch TV on the Internet — and are pulling out all the stops to keep this from happening. Apple TV is experiencing these same growing pains. TV companies can’t realistically make the same profits from ads over Internet TV that they do now, and so naturally, no one is lining up to partner with either Google or Apple TV.
But with viewers dropping their cable plans like a bad habit, these companies are only delaying the inevitable. Google TV has some notable contenders in its corner, including the likes of Sony and Logitech. So while it looks like actually investing in Google TV right now is a little premature, it’s only a matter of time until it becomes a fully functional TV alternative. But go ahead, mourn the loss of Fancast for today, and then go back to streaming on your computer for the time being.