D-Link’s DivX Connected media extender just got a whole lot more interesting. With the beta release of PC server software (v1.4), you can now stream select Flash-based video sites from the Internet and through the PC to your TV by way of the DSM-330 ($230).
Flash video and audio can now be launched through DivX Connected plug-ins, opening the floodgates to a vast library of content. Upon release of 1.4, users can expect to be hit with a wave of new plug-ins, including the likes of YouTube and Dailymotion, and developers will have the tools they need to port countless other Flash video sites to the DivX Connected platform.
I played with the new features for about an hour this morning, viewing content from YouTube, Hulu, and ABC News. Of course, the video quality isn’t going to be any better than the source and playback wasn’t always super smooth – but that could be related to the beta status or my over-taxed XP virtual machine. Unfortunately, the biggest limitation is that many of these sites don’t provide or expose keyboard controls which could be mapped to the D-Link remote. As in: I sure wish I could pause or rewind content. Having said that, I’m very surprised (in a good way) to see this capability added.
The Internet is an efficient and effective video delivery method, however it’s fairly obvious that the various players (TiVo, Apple, DivX, ZvBox, Sling, Roku, Xbox, PS3, etc) are thinking beyond the computer as they race into the living room. Questions remain and it’s too early to declare a winner: Who will offer the best experience and the best sources – and at what cost?