Is Google Building a Games Console?

The Sony PlayStation 4, Micrsoft Xbox One and Nintendo Wii U can look forward to yet more competition soon, if a new report is to be believed. Google is building a videogame console based on the Android OS, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cites "sources familiar with the matter." Google would neither confirm nor deny the report.

The rumor comes in the same week as the release of the Ouya, a $99 Kickstarter-backed console and controller combo that runs a version of Android and fits into the palm of your hand. It is not, however, quite plug and play.

SEE ALSO Ouya: Fun For Hackers, Not Ready for Retail

If Google were to develop its own console, it could count on a lot of useful feedback from Ouya's passionate user base. It would also have a library of Android games ready to go on day one: there are more than 100,000 games in the Google Play store.

By contrast, the PlayStation 3 currently has around 800 games available. And although admittedly they are nearly all higher production values and far more expensive than the average Android title, Google could be betting there's a market for a wider variety of casual games you can just pick up and play on your TV.

According to the Journal's sources, Google is also working on a digital watch that runs Android, as well as a successor to that much maligned and much delayed orb-like media player, the Nexus Q.

Apple is also rumored to be working on a games console. So that marketplace may soon get very crowded indeed.

Image: Justin Sullivan, Getty News