First seen at CES last January, the HAVA place shifting device began shipping in August. Initially Monsoon Multimedia offered one box with WiFi to stream your home television feed, but they’ve since changed gears and are now offering two cosmetically redesigned boxes: one with WiFi @ $250, one without @ $200. Unlike competitors Slingbox and Sony’s LocationFree, Monsoon is also licensing their technology as an OEM to Pinnacle Systems.
For the last several months, I’ve spent some time with two loaner HAVA boxes. When reviewing any placeshifting technology, the obvious comparisons to market leader Sling Media must be made. With that in mind, here’s what I found given the comparable video quality:
- Built-in WiFi and component connections.
- Ability to record live stream.
- Sleek software GUI with simple setup.
- Limited software functionality.
- Windows-only for the moment.
- Could not receive feed over EVDO. (Tech support blamed Sprint’s upload speeds…)
So what’s the bottom line? If you’re a Windows-only user with a need for built-in wireless or unscheduled recording: HAVA’s worth looking at. Though… I’d probably suggest waiting a few months until Monsoon works out some of the software kinks and adds functionality to better compete with Sling Media’s more mature player.
Check out some pics after the break and hit me with questions in the comments.