It’s beginning to look more and more like 2007 will be the year that gap between Web Video and your TV will be closed.
Sling Media, who make the Slingbox, a device that allows you to watch your TV’s programming on pretty much any compter anywhere, will be joining the parade of manufacturers who want to help cross that last 10 feet from the laptop to the big-screen.
Sling’s announcement may or may not take the wind of Apple’s long-expected announcement of the same type of set-top device this week. It’s getting a bit crowded: companies like Netgear, TiVo, and even DuroSport have talked about putting out similiar devices this year.
One thing seems clear, by this time next year, there will be a lot of choices in this space. Let’s us hope that at least one of them is the killer solution that’s easy to use and relatively cheap.
In that mode, I have one small request for how one of these devices should work: it needs to be able to be accessed from both the TV and the computer. And it needs to treat my TV like both a traditional TV and a web browser.
I can see where sometimes I would want to be able to dial up that content from a subscribed or favorited web-video channel, and at should be as easy as changing channels on my TV is now. I can see other times where I’m reading about the latest video making the YouTube rounds, and I want to be able to see it on the TV, right this second, or maybe bookmark to see later. Either way, I would access it from my laptop, and use my network to play it over the TV.
What do you want for one of these devices?