Parks Associates Blog

Thursday, October 09, 2008

SlingCatcher - a ZVBox Alternative?

Sling Media (EchoStar) has announced the retail availability of the SlingCatcher, which among other features will put PC content on TVs in the home. This sounds a lot like the ZVBox, in terms of the applications around viewing Web video on the TV. Here's what the Sling press release says:

"The SlingCatcher allows customers to watch online video from any popular site on the internet including network television sites like, video content sites like and, community video sites like, and even online movie rentals from popular services like Netflix, directly from a PC to the TV for the ultimate lean-back, social viewing experience."

Sling is going wireless with this, so there's no need to run over the home's coax. It's also about $200 less expensive than the ZVBox.

What I'm wondering is whether the SlingCatcher is basically casting the PC and its full functionality over to the TV, or have they "scraped" the media applications from the PC and put them into a specialized interface. For example, could I bring up an Internet radio station using the SlingCatcher and play that over my TV, or am I locked into the applications that the My Media gives me?

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