SageTV Acquired By Google

by Damian on June 18, 2011 · 9 comments

in News

Some news was just announced on SageTV’s website that came as a bit of a surprise:

We’re thrilled to announce that SageTV has been acquired by Google.

Since 2002, we’ve worked to change the TV viewing experience by building cutting-edge software and technology that allows you to create and control your media center from multiple devices. And as the media landscape continues to evolve, we think it’s time our vision of entertainment management grows as well. By teaming up with Google, we believe our ideas will reach an even larger audience of users worldwide on many different products, platforms and services.

We’ve seen how Google’s developer efforts are designed to stimulate innovation across the web, and as developers have played a core role in the success of SageTV, we think our shared vision for open technology will help us advance the online entertainment experience. We look forward to joining Google, and while we don’t have anything specific to announce at this time, we encourage interested developers to email:

Full speed ahead!

The SageTV Team

Honestly I am not sure what to think about this. Maybe this is Google’s way of trying to salvage the failed GoogleTV or an attempt to get after Microsoft/Windows Media Center? There could be a lot of positives for SageTV as this could open them up to a lot of 3rd party content that they are currently restricted from natively. However, the bigger question is whether or not this acquisition will lock down SageTV. After all, that has been one of the biggest strengths so any sort of restrictions imposed (which I would assume would have to happen in order to get premium content) can only be seen as a negative. Only time will tell if this was a smart move by SageTV or just another acquisition that will get swallowed up and lost within Google. At a minimum this has to be unsettling to current SageTV users and honestly I wouldn’t even recommend SageTV to prospective users until the dust clear. So what are your thoughts, a death move or the beginning of something better?

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Hi, my name is Damian, and I'm tech gadget addict! Although I always had some interest in technology, it wasn't until I got my EX470 and more importantly found, that my interest became an addiction. My goal, aside from world domination and to see the Mets/Broncos win another championship, is to set up the perfect digital home where all my media is available at the click of a button. When I am not writing for you can find me over at my blog at or follow me on twitter


Ross June 18, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Wow, that’s a surprise! I currently use WMC but have been experimenting with SageTV since acquiring a Colossus. I haven’t taken the plunge to purchase SageTV yet, so now I’ll probably wait until the dust settles.

This is such an informative and helpful site, Damian. Great work! So many of the improvements to my HTPC are a result of the info and guides posted here. Many thanks.

Damian June 19, 2011 at 4:01 am

Yeah, I have experimented with SageTV (it just never really caught on) and do have an HD300 in my house. What made SageTV what it was is that it was a small company in a niche market, allowing it to fly under the radar.

Glad you have been enjoying the site. I was actually getting my boys to bed last night when I read the news, dropped my tablet, ran downstairs and threw a post together :-D

Techvet June 19, 2011 at 5:53 am

Definitely something to watch. My setup involves SageTV and MyMovies, a combination I like very much. Not sure where this will take us long term, but like Damian, would recommend any prospective users to hold off until the dust settles. Small niche company being bought up by a bigger one is not always a good thing (ex. FlipVideo & Cisco), but by the same token it can be fabulous (Harmony Remote & Logitech).

The Kitty June 19, 2011 at 11:17 am

Now if they would put some dev muscle into it and made it free, it could be a good thing. But yes, wait & see.

Schatzman June 20, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Nothing is ever free. I just don’t want to see monthly payment models…

John June 20, 2011 at 7:44 pm

I am bummed about this. I was about 1 month away from buying two HD300′s and the SageTV Media Center. Now i have no idea what to do. Anyone have any ideas? I am looking for two machines that run $150 each, and software that will be able to play back everything that the HD300 did when in extender mode. I will not be doing any live TV. Just backed up DVDs, BR’s, music, and pictures.

Thanks for your help!

Damian June 30, 2011 at 3:51 pm

Hi John,

$150 each may be tough. You could look at a PCH A200/210 which I believe runs around $179-$199. My preference are the Dune Smarts but the cheapest one runs at $249 I believe.

Photon June 29, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Bummed and forced to accelerate my upgrade plans. It appears the core is staying with SageTV and development continues on the community projects such as Phoenix. We are told EPG data will continue for at least one year and there is a community developed substitute we can switch to if the EPG data stops after that. The only remaining concerns for sticking with what we already have setup longer than one year are related to the servers that supply firmware updates and such in case you run a factory reset on and extender for some reason.

I’m upgrading my EX495 so I will be able to run multiple instances of comskip and moving my SageTV setup over to it and onto Sage v7 software. The cost has skyrocketed with HD300s going on ebay for more than double the cost of new before the store closed. Fingers crossed that Google takes what Sage was and adds it into it’s next GoogleTV release so we will have an upgrade path in a few years.

Damian June 29, 2011 at 3:44 pm

I am actually planning on putting my HD300 on eBay in the next couple of days (of course hoping for a nice markup from the $149 I think I originally paid).

It will get tricky with upgrade paths and I do agree with you that hopefully Google keeps what SageTV was and just adds to it. I fear they will just strip out what they need (i.e. the DVR functionality) and toss the rest to the side, but hopefully I am wrong.

Now if only there was proper WMC integration in WHS…

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