Sling Media – Streaming TV to Portable devices

sling_media_logo.gif imageForbes has a short write-up about an interesting upcoming product from startup Sling Media, called the “SlingBox Personal Broadcaster.” If it works as advertised, we’ll probably be hearing a lot about it.

The idea is simple: hook up the little $200 box to your TiVo or your cable box and connect it to your home Internet. Then, when you’re out and about, just pull up the client software on your PDA or laptop. SlingBox’s software will detect the quality and throughput of your connection and shoot you our a recompressed, digital stream of whatever analog signal you could be watching at home. It would even work on cellphones, they say, if the bandwidth were there (and it will be Real Soon Now).

The company plans to avoid a copyright-infringement suplex from the entertainment industry by limiting the remote viewing to a single stream at a time. We’ll definitely keep an eye on this one – the term “place shifting” could become as widespread as “time shifting.”

Read more on the company web site

– Mike

Comments (7)

  1. Does it to UPnP? If not, why not?

    Has it been tested with our Windows Media Connect software, which provides the server side functionality for the device?

    There are a lot of other devices already on the market that do this btw. They stream PCM, WMA, MP3, WMV, MPEG2, AVI, and render JPG, BMP and GIF files on demand. The WMC product can source all of these media types.

  2. Mark Mullin says:

    I think your ‘place shifting’ comment is dead on the money And that’s one of my personal reasons for attending the sept 14 show – I spend a lot of time commuting from boston to nyc via train, and I do things I can’t mention in polite company to DVDS so I can watch them on my pda – I’ve got my own hacked pocket tv port and a too complex semi automated process to get from fawlty towers dvd to pda playback

  3. Mike says:

    The company web site doesn’t have a lot of information about the product, I’ve hit the "Info" link to ask for more information – it would be kinda cool to combine this style of device with a Media Center PC, giving you the ability to watch any recorded program wherever you are in the world – I’m looking forward to trying out a PMC sometime in the next few weeks – the problem there is that the PMC will only show content that’s been copied down to it from my PC or media center PC, having access to "all" my recorded content would be excellent…

    – Mike

  4. Mike says:

    This does make for an interesting question though…

    I can purchase DVD’s and watch these at home, or take them on the road and watch them on my laptop, I can also record content on my Media Center PC and copy this down to my Portable Media Center, and then also watch these on the road – if I have "good enough" connectivity then why do I need a Portable Media Center or DVD’s, shouldn’t I be able to just pick content off the wire ? (all my recorded programs, music, photos etc…) ?

    – Mike