Thursday, January 28, 2010

Boxee... The Internet TV Revolution Has Officially Begun!!!

A couple of years ago I began watching TV on the internet. I would go to various sites to find content including Fox, Hulu, TV.com. At the time I thought, "wouldn't it be great if there was a directory online that would allow you to easily navigate all of this content." I also thought, "wouldn't it be great to have a product that would deliver this content on my TV."  Today, we have that directory, and in the 2nd quarter of 2010, we will have a product that will deliver it on our TV.   Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present to you...
 

Boxee is an open source software platform that manages TV entertainment, Movies, Music, Photos, Files, and Apps.  The software runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux computers, and on Apple TV.  In addition, companies like D-Link are creating hardware appliances that offer an easy way to watch content and manage Boxee on your TV.   Boxee could eventually be integrated with any number of appliances like DVD players, Game Consoles, and even TV's. So let's take a look at some of the features of Boxee:


Internet TV
Boxee offers a wide selection of internet TV, organized in an easy to use interface.






 

Once you drill down to the show you'd like to watch, Boxee gives you a choice of services from which you can stream the show.  In the example above, you can watch an episode of "The Office" streaming from NBC or from Hulu.  On my 22" computer monitor the quality of the show was outstanding.

Apps
Boxee gives you the ability to download apps written for the Boxee platform.  These apps will allow you to listen to streaming music, connect with your NetFlix subscription, view photos, watch baseball, podcasts, and YouTube, and much more.




Local Content
Boxee can search your local hard drive and index movies, music, photos, and files you have stored on your computer or on your local network, for easy viewing on your TV.

Social Networking
If you're into Social Networking (and who isn't these days), Boxee has features you would enjoy.  Share what you are viewing, track what your friends are watching, mark your favories, etc.

Boxee Box
D-Link has developed an appliance that can be attached to your home TV, and used to run Boxee.  Calling it an appliance is like calling the Empire State Building, just a building... it doesn't do it justice.  The Boxee box has a radical yet attractive and functional design.  It comes with a QWERTY remote control to make text entry a breeze.

 
 
Cost
Boxee is free to download and use.  There are no subscription fees for Internet TV content.  Some App providers (like NetFlix and MLB) will require subscriptions to their service to view content.  The Boxee Box will be available in the 2nd quarter of 2010 and will run you about $200.

Cheaper TV Take:  This technology is game changing and has the potential to disrupt a number of industries including DVR's, Cable TV, Premium Content Services, Apple TV, and Pay Per View.  I'm not the only one who thinks so; Boxee received a number of Best In Show accolades at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show.  Once it's available, I fully expect to add the Boxee Box to my family TV.  The writing is on the wall cable companies, the internet is the future of home entertainment delivered to your TV.