I'm one of the people out at I/O that was given one, but I've only taken it out of the box to look at it so far (too many sessions, not enough time).
To go along with the expensive design part. The device has a lot of mass. It was designed to sit on a table, and be interacted with locally. The top half of the Q spins (I believe as a volume control, but I have not had a chance to set it up yet) If you look at the breakdown diagrams they briefly show in the introduction video - there's also a complex set of components inside of the device. So that increases the assembly cost as well.
It's not meant to be a simple video player, nor just a slave to the TV. Hooking it up to a TV is technically optional.
I'm glad it is being produced in the US - we need more companies demanding device manufacture and assembly in the US - it will only help drive down the US assembly costs due to volume. We used to (10 years ago) do a LOT of assembly in the US for all sorts of devices, but the economic downturns drove a lot of assembly over seas (increasing some costs, decreasing others).