WATCH VIDEO. US-based Simple.TV will open its online store today, Friday September 28, and is ready to fulfill orders, which will start shipping on October 15.
The company has raised $226,414.00 from over one thousand investors on the Kickstart crowdfunding platform and is now in the latest stages of offering the actual product. At this year’s CES it was a winner of the Best of CES Award from CNet.
The device, which retails at $149 (EUR116), captures live broadcasts from digital terrestrial and basic cable and streams it to screens everywhere, TV via Roku or Apple Airplay, iPad, Mac and PC via browser (html.5), so it will work on iPads and Android devices.
In order to benefit from the PVR function, people need to attach a local hard drive, so they can pause live TV and record programmes. Multiple users can access recorded shows simultaneously
In its basic version, Simple.TV will stream live channels and recorded programmes across the viewer’s home. With a ‘premium’ subscription, customers also receive an EPG, offering programmes details and visuals and series recordings. But, more importantly, subscribers also can stream content everywhere.
The Simple.TV subscription costs $49 per year or $149 for lifetime. Canada is next on the Simple.TV agenda, and the company plans to do a version of Simple.TV that will work in Europe in 2013.
Broadband TV View. The idea behind Simple.TV is, indeed, simple. It brings TV Everywhere to all unencrypted video signals and acts as an easy version of the Slingbox. This makes it a powerful tool that could be game-changing.
In the US it works with digital terrestrial broadcasts, which are free-to-air, as well as with basic cable – as long as the signal is not encoded.
With a subscription, people can access their ‘home channels’ everywhere – not only in the US, but “across the planet”, as long as there is a broadband connection.
The plan of the company is to launch in Europe sometime next year. In most countries, the DTT signals are free-to-air, but in a number of countries most, if not all, channels are encrypted. In that case, Simple.TV won’t work.
The same with basic cable in Europe – depending on the operator, most cablers encrypt all their channels, even the ones in basic. This is to protect their business and prevent illegal signal tapping.
There are exceptions to the rule, such as in Germany, where the public broadcasters insist on unencrypted carriage.