Archives For Slingbox

arris-slingbox-ms4000

The previously unannounced Arris Slingbox that I had stumbled upon at the Cable Show is now ready for its closeup:

Arris Group and Sling Media are introducing a new media streaming device that empowers service providers to offer live and recorded content for a comprehensive multiscreen experience for their subscribers…welcome to TV anywhere. The ARRIS MS4000 (Media Streamer 4000) is powered by Sling Media technology, and will be available to all service providers deploying the ARRIS Whole Home Solution.

Product highlights:

  • Streaming to mobile devices (tablet, smartphone, PC/Mac)
  • In-home streaming via Wi-Fi
  • Support for remote streaming over cellular and WiFi networks
  • Support for live TV and access to DVR content
  • Up to 4 simultaneous HD streams
  • Fully integrated solution incorporating the MOXI UI, MOXI Mobile Application (iOS and Android), and ARRIS Services Portal

We quite liked the WDTV Play when we reviewed it back in February. The streamer is a step (or three) slower than the Roku and with far fewer apps, but brings several nifty tricks of its own including a fresh, customizable UI with Android-esque widgets. After receiving Sling’s monthly email blast, featuring promotional WDTV Play pricing, and inquiries from a pal maintaining an out-of-state apartment (where his children live) I figured it was time to fire up the SlingPlayer app.

wdtv-play-slingbox

The SlingCatcher may be long gone, but the dream of a television-based Slingbox endpoint lives on…. And the WDTV Play SlingPlayer app works exactly as you’d expect, relaying Slingbox video content from elsewhere in the home or cross-country (as I tested). Interacting with your remote set-top is of course somewhat sluggish and picture quality will vary dependent upon available bandwidth, but that’s the tradeoff for “real” TV Everywhere. One of WDTV Play’s most clever features is the ability to power up the box into a specific app – and I suspect my friend will put that to use as he continues to enjoy his Comcast subscription several states away.

Should you be similarly intrigued, Slingbox or no, the promo knocks $20 off the WDTV Play — click here and use coupon code WDTVPLAY20 to receive the $50 pricing (plus tax and $3 shipping).

Fox Loses Appeal Asking for Injunction Against Dish's 'Hopper' Ad-Skipper

slingbox-share

Since we haven’t actually gotten around to an in-depth review of the newer HD Slingboxes or covered the current state of Sling’s webplayer (that has essentially replaced Mac and PC desktop software), we figured we should at least touch on this little nugget that Engadget turned up. In years and devices past, sharing one’s Slingbox meant sharing a password. But Sling has never shied away controversy, despite network and studio protest, and has revised sharing capabilities with individual, revocable tokens. The Slingbox viewing experience remains one-to-one and invites have been distributed by email address via the Sling.com portal. What’s new this week for Slingbox 350 and 500 owners is Facebook sharing which potentially reduces friction and provides Sling an opportunity to advertise post to your wall (with your permission). Accepting an invite sends guests directly to Sling’s portal, and this isn’t related the possibly discontinued Facebook SlingPlayer introduced in 2011.

jvc-slingcatcher

It may not be the Roku client we’ve been pining for, but as the post-Panasonic JVC continues to flesh out the video side of the Kenwood corporation, they’ve launched a new line of “BlackSapphire” Smart TVs sporting a native Slingbox app. The modestly priced and sized sets, clocking in at only 42″ and 47″, could make for a nice den SlingCatcher. Beyond Sling support, Netflix, Vudu, and Pandora are also present… along with a “flippable” QWERTY remote according to CNET. Of course, while many television manufacturers produce “smart” sets, I’ve yet to meet one with both an efficient and snappy UI. Not to mention, my Vizio has been known to crash/reboot at inopportune times, while my Panasonic is littered with ads. So JVC judgement will await CNET’s review.

comcast-thrones

After taking in the annual Cable Show, what struck me are the increasingly complex relationships – shifting and unpredictable alliances, enemies now friends, competitors snuffed… with the final chapters yet to be written. Much like HBO’s Game of Thrones. Beyond the corporate square dance, there’s clearly increased excitement surrounding TV Everywhere. So head on over to The Verge where I penned an article touching on these topics, including exclusive reveals of TiVo’s forthcoming web portal.

belkin-at-tv

While the Slingbox may be the most well known placeshifting technologies, there have been others… And Sling Media rival Monsoon, makers of HAVA and Vulkano devices, licensed their tech to Belkin under the @TV brand in 2012. Presumably due to Belkin’s broad retail footprint, Sling took issue and launched a patent infringement suit in January. Monsoon has yet to respond, but Belkin and Sling have just worked out a deal (subject to ITC approval) according to Law360:

Sling Media asked the trade body to dismiss Belkin from its investigation into whether rival companies were infringing six patents for the proprietary technology. The two companies said they’d reached a settlement