Sling Media update

October 21st, 2008

I had a chance to meet up with the folks at Sling Media earlier today.

I asked them how SlingPlayer Mobile for the Blackberry and iPhone are coming along. They are coming along though they’re not quite ready yet. It looks they’ll be getting Sling Player Mobile 2.0.

I checked out 2.0 on a Blackberry Bold it was playing a stream over HSDPA and it looked pretty good. The big changes with 2.0 is that the interface has changed so that there are some icons on the bottom. There will also be support for your Sling account so you just have to remember your login and not your SlingID. The interface speed seemed fine.

You’re going to need OS 4.5 at least to use it on a Blackberry

After they roll out 2.0 for those 2 platforms expect Sling to update the existing players for Symbian, WM, etc.

Going forward they are looking at supporting higher streaming resolutions. Currently Slingplayer Mobile maxes out at QVGA (320×240) with a bit rate of around 500kbps. Next up should be half VGA (640×240) and then VGA eventually. You’ll need a powerful enough device of course.

I asked them about Android and they said it was on their radar. I also asked them when Slingplayer will work on my Nokia e71 – they said they were working on it (I’m guessing that means wait for 2.0).

The real interesting thing was the SlingCatcher. I’ll be honest. I thought the SlingCatcher was just for watching your Slingbox on a TV. On the back are component video, composite video, S-Video and HDMI outputs along with a SPDIF and regular audio out. Along with a network jack and 2 USB ports.

Besides watching your Slingbox it has a few tricks up its sleeve. Besides letting you watch your Slingbox without a computer it has 2 other neat features:

First off you can load media files onto a FAT32 formatted USB storage device, connect it to the SlingCatcher’s USB slot and watch them on your TV. Apparently it supports a wide range of file formats: avi, vob, ifo, pc, ts, mpg, wmv, asf, mov, mp4, m4v, mp3, mp4a, wav. It also supports the following codecs: wmv, mpeg 2, mpeg 4, h.264, Xvid, mp2, mp3, wma, aac and ac3.

There will a program for your PC which will check your files to make sure that the Slingcatcher can play them and if it can’t the program will transcode them into something the catcher will understand.

The other thing is called SlingProjector. It’s software for your PC that will play whatever you’re watching on the PC on your TV. So if you’re watching YouTube you just fire up the program, click on the YouTube video and it will show up on your TV. If you’re PC can decode it, it will play on the Slingbox.

Mac users should know that SlingPlayer 2.0 will come to mac eventually.

Before I move to the next subject I should mention that at this time SlingCatcher only outputs video at up to 640×480, 1080i support will come soon.

Finally Sling.com is currently in beta. When it’s done you’ll be able to watch your Slingbox via their website so you don’t have to install a client on your computer.

It’s good to see SlingMedia is adding new features to their stuff.

Entry Filed under: Phones

1 Comment Add your own

    SlingPlayer Mobile Update&hellip  |  October 25th, 2008 at 2:33 am

    [...] a player for the iPhone and BlackBerry and development is well under way according to a report from Howard Chui. Furthermore, Windows Mobile, Symbian, and Palm OS users can expect to see a version 2 release of [...]

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