Who out there is sick of satellite, what with the ever-changing rates, dropping channels basic cable has and those god-awful commercials? One might consider having a look at Boxee TV, a web-based television platform, that can save money and get a lot of the same programming.
Boxee TV follows format of Roku, SimpleTV
A number of companies make and sell web-based television boxes that offer a serious challenge to cable and satellite companies. The idea is pretty simple; the box connects to WiFi and streams Netflix, Hulu and so forth, and also usually have a DVR function where they can record it.
There’s a new one coming out called Boxee TV, according to Time magazine, which takes a slightly different approach. Boxee TV has been around before. The company launched a streaming TV box a couple years ago that failed miserably. However, the new one works a bit different, in that it uses cloud storage for DVR recordings.
The new Boxee TV also isn’t terribly expensive, starting at $99 for the box. Adding DVR services is $14.99 per month, which is more than some competing models but much less than it would cost with satellite or cable.
Works with basic, has antenna
The Boxee TV receiver has a cable port, so users can use it as a DVR box and thus an accessory. It also has its own antenna, so publicly broadcast stations like NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox and PBS can be picked up. It also comes with native apps for Netflix, Vimeo, VUDU, YouTube and Pandora.
The way it differs from similar boxes such as Roku or Netgear, which are cheaper by half, is that Boxee TV doesn’t have any on-board memory, nor does it require an external hard drive for storage, such as the recently-released Simple.TV, according to CNET. Storage is done via uploading content to a cloud “locker,” which users can access at any time. It is a dual-code DVR recorder and can record two programs simultaneously. Users can’t pause live programs, like on TiVo, however.
That said, unlike DVR systems that are hampered by the memory, cloud storage is unlimited. However, getting the DVR service does cost the $14.99 monthly fee, though that’s hardly enough to send a person out for short term loans to cover.
Limited markets to start
Unfortunately, the hitch is that the DVR services for the Boxee TV, according to TG Daily, are limited to just a few cities to start with. Only residents of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., will be able to get the DVR services. The company plans on expanding the network over the next year, though.
Everyone else can only use it as a streaming device, until DVR services are available everywhere. At that it fails, since other set-top boxes for those who want to cut the cord are much cheaper and have more or the same streaming native apps.