Practical Technology

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Will the new Boxee be worth buying?


The first generation all-in-one Internet TV, Boxee tried to do everything you could do with TV and the Internet…and it wasn’t very good at doing anything. Oh sure, if you put in the sweat equity you could do great things with it. At day’s end, though, the Boxee was a device for hardcore Internet TV geeks. The new Boxee, which will be available in some U.S. markets on November 1st for $99 and a monthly $14.99 service fee, also tries to do a lot, but it’s meant for Joe TV-Watcher instead of Joe Techie.

Boxee co-founder and CEO Avner Ronen claims in a statement that with the new model of Boxee “you’ll be able watch live TV broadcasts in beautiful HD from channels like ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, PBS, Univision, and many others.” To do that, “It works with antennas and unencrypted basic cable. The device has two tuners so you can watch one show while recording another. So far, that’s just an ordinary DVR, but Boxee’s special sauce is that Boxee records your videos to its own cloud storage service for a “No Limits DVR” experience. 

That sounds OK, albeit you’re going to need a darn fast Internet up-link to actually save your HD over-the-air or cable broadcasts to your service.

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