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Google's Android TV platform brings mobile games to the living room

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Android TV, a platform designed to make it easier for people to find entertainment content on televisions, is Google's latest attempt to enter the living room, and games are an important focus for it, the company announced today during Google I/O 2014.

Devices running Android TV require input devices with a minimum of a D-pad and a microphone, since voice navigation is built into the interface. You can use a virtual controls on a smartphone or tablet, a typical remote control or a game controller.

Dave Burke, director of engineering for Android, showed off a multiplayer demo of EA Sports' NBA Jam on stage. He was playing on a traditional controller hooked up to the TV, while another person was playing against him with virtual controls on an Android tablet.

Android TV will run on set-top boxes, and it will also be directly integrated into TVs — manufacturers such as Sony will launch Android TV-based televisions starting this year.

Amazon's Fire TV, which Amazon announced in April, also supports a game controller and is designed to support mobile games in the living room.

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