I spent a few minutes catching up with Boxee CEO Avner Ronen this evening. First off, the upcoming Iomega Boxee Box looks much better in person than it does in their press shot – for a rectangular black plastic box, it’s pretty sharp. It’s also larger than I had envisioned. The QWERTY remote seems practical. I think I prefer the D-Link Boxee Box keyboard, but folks will have no problem determining top from bottom by touch using Iomega’s rendition. The box, as previously detailed here, is expected to ship mid-year.
Yeah, Vudu is coming soon, CBS content will be available on demand, and ViewSonic will start selling Boxee-enabled televisions. But the highlight of my visit was without a doubt the upcoming Boxee iPad app. It is a thing of beauty, technically and visually. The app functions as both a stand alone multimedia experience and as an interface into any full blown Boxee experience you may run. Whereas I had assumed it was merely a powerful remote, à la TiVo, one could conceivably run this, and only this, version of Boxee. Assuming you’re content with a 10″ screen. But you’ll probably want a PC handy to act as a Boxee server, that will transcode and stream your personal video library on the fly to an iPad. Additionally, any sort of web video the iPad can handle, the Boxee iPad app can handle as well. Of course, there’s also all sorts of social media interaction available within the app. Look for it within a few months.
Last, but not least, as I was admiring the funky little D-Link Boxee Box I mentioned to Avner that it’d be real nice to have a Boxee Box with a tuner… and he agreed. Hm!