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View Full Version : Can someone explain why you want a Slingbox?


AbMagFab
03-25-2008, 11:32 AM
So I know this is a little off-topic, but I think it relates to Tivos.

I've got a ton of electronics in my house, and I like to buy anything that makes my enjoyment of media even a smidgen better.

I want to buy a Slingbox, but I can't see any reason why I need one at all. Frankly, I can't see any reason why anyone needs one.

I clearly don't understand it, even though I've read everything I can find on it.

Something like ORB I get. Slingbox I just don't get.

Can someone explain a use-case for Slingbox that makes sense? And live-tv can't be a part of it (who watches live tv anyway?).

Thanks!

RoyK
03-25-2008, 11:44 AM
In simple terms a slingbox can be set up to allow you to control and watch your video equipment (e.g. TiVo) from a remote location over the internet. So, for example, if you are on a business trip and have a broadband internet connection in your hotel room (and, of course, one at home) you can use it to watch programs from your home TiVo.

kas25
03-25-2008, 11:50 AM
My impression is that it will be a cheap way to play your main Tivo, for example, in your bedroom. No monthly fees, no cable wiring.

ah30k
03-25-2008, 12:05 PM
Business travel is my main use. I am too cheap to buy Sling so I've been trying free alternatives such as Orb. Orb used to work fine for me but I can't get it to work with my S3 though.

I was disappointed to hear Tom Rogers say place-shifting was not a priority.

mrbubbles
03-25-2008, 12:12 PM
I used mine this past weekend to watch March Madness from work. I work in a 24/7/365 server monitoring/troubleshooting job and had to be onsite over the weekend including Easter Day. Not much going on so I was able to watch the games (yes, on live TV) remotely via Slingbox. Comes in handy during football season on Sunday as well.

Outside of that, I am hoping for a Slingplayer for the iPhone when the SDK is released. This would allow me to watch my TV from where ever. I am sure it would be (near) useless via EDGE but if it would be nice to be able to watch my stuff where ever I could find a wifi connection.

pdonoghu
03-25-2008, 01:02 PM
I use a Slingbox when we travel in our RV. Let's me control the Tivo back home to watch home news and other programs. Once, when the cable in the campground went out, popped the laptop on the counter and let the wife watch the end of one of her favorite programs while the cable was out.

Can wait for the Sling Catcher that will allow me to feed picture directly to a TV instead of using a computer.

wickerbill
03-25-2008, 01:29 PM
I use it mainly for sports. It has gotten quite a bit of use over the past two weeks with all of the weekday basketball games on during the day. It's also a handy way to check to make sure my tivo is set to record something or to schedule something to record. Much faster than dealing with the awfully slow tivo website.

bkdtv
03-25-2008, 01:43 PM
If you have a Blackberry or Windows Mobile 6 phone with 3G/EVDO, you can watch your TiVo and all of its recordings anywhere that you have Internet access. No more twiddling your thumbs on the metro or while waiting at the doctor's office.

On business trips, you can continue watching your favorite recorded programs on either your PC/Mac or Blackberry/WM phone.

BrianAZ
03-25-2008, 04:49 PM
I'm assuming that the quality is sufficient for SD? Does it hiccup or have audio lag or anything? What kind of upstream do I need @ home? 1mbps? I'm hesitant to spend the cash until I am sure it works well...

moyekj
03-25-2008, 04:56 PM
With my home upload speed limited to 512Kbps max I find it pretty useless for viewing as the quality is very lousy, the lag is pretty great and there are some audio/video glitches. Seems to me like one needs 2Mbps or higher to get decent quality transcoding with Slingbox Solo. On the LAN it does a pretty decent job, but Hava is supposed to be better on the LAN, offering full D1 quality.

However I find it very useful for interfacing real time with my Tivos over the network for scheduling, deleting shows, etc. Heck of a lot better than the Online Scheduling solutions.

That Don Guy
03-25-2008, 05:53 PM
Can wait for the Sling Catcher that will allow me to feed picture directly to a TV instead of using a computer.I thought that Slingboxes worked "both ways" - if you had two of them, you could hook the second one up to a TV and watch what was going into the first one.

I seem to recall the NFL throwing a fit when they heard that the Slingbox allowed "TV-to-TV" transfers - why bother having blackout rules, or cutting a deal with DirecTV for out-of-market games, if they can watch out-of-market games being aired in other cities?

-- Don

tivoupgrade
03-25-2008, 05:58 PM
If you have a Blackberry or Windows Mobile 6 phone with 3G/EVDO, you can watch your TiVo and all of its recordings anywhere that you have Internet access. No more twiddling your thumbs on the metro or while waiting at the doctor's office.

On business trips, you can continue watching your favorite recorded programs on either your PC/Mac or Blackberry/WM phone.

I don't think the Blackberry support is available yet, but I did get an impromptu demo of it from Dave Zatz at CES and it looked fantastic on the Blackberry Curve, even without WiFi access.

jrm01
03-25-2008, 06:26 PM
My ex-wife remarried and moved to Florida. They wanted to watch the Steeler game every weekend, so they bought a Slingbox and gave it to my daughter to hook up (here in Pittsburgh) to her TV so they could use it every Sunday. Of course she couldn't get it hooked up, so I went over and got it set up for her. My ex-wife and husband are now happy Steeler fans in Florida.

ciper
03-25-2008, 06:47 PM
Tivo does timeshifting
Slingbox does locationshifting

Combine them to allow the viewing of a program at any time in any location. They belong together.

I have my slingbox classic connected to an S1 Tivo which acts as a show archive. It has nearly complete copies of all my favorite shows. I can be at any location with a network connection and fire up an episode of Mythbusters or Goodeats.

aindik
03-25-2008, 06:48 PM
My ex-wife remarried and moved to Florida. They wanted to watch the Steeler game every weekend, so they bought a Slingbox and gave it to my daughter to hook up (here in Pittsburgh) to her TV so they could use it every Sunday. Of course she couldn't get it hooked up, so I went over and got it set up for her. My ex-wife and husband are now happy Steeler fans in Florida.

You answered a different question. The question you answered was "why does the NFL want to sue Slingbox out of existence?"

:)

telcoman
03-25-2008, 06:49 PM
[QUOTE=AbMagFab;6114587]So I know this is a little off-topic, but I think it relates to Tivos.

I've got a ton of electronics in my house, and I like to buy anything that makes my enjoyment of media even a smidgen better.

I want to buy a Slingbox, but I can't see any reason why I need one at all. Frankly, I can't see any reason why anyone needs one.

I clearly don't understand it, even though I've read everything I can find on it.

Something like ORB I get. Slingbox I just don't get.

Can someone explain a use-case for Slingbox that makes sense? And live-tv can't be a part of it (who watches live tv anyway?).

If you are ever stuck at an airport with wifi you can access your tivo and all the channels on your cable system thru your laptop computer.

Telcoman

Tiyuri
03-25-2008, 07:04 PM
I love my slingbox. If you told me I could have either a slingbox or a tivo I take the slingbox every time.

I live in Atlanta but grew up in the NYC area. I have a slingbox hooked up in my parents house and since they have FiOS the upload speed is excellent. Now I can watch the Giants, Yankees and Devils without having to subscribe to a horribly expensive cable package. I run the VGA out on my computer into my TV and the picture is good for what it is. HD it is not but certainly acceptable even for fast moving things like hockey. Watching it on my phone is sweet too.

If you don't travel or have a need to watch TV remotely then it does not have much use.

ciper
03-25-2008, 07:09 PM
If you don't travel or have a need to watch TV remotely then it does not have much use.

Wireless network + slingbox + laptop = watching TV while on the toilet :cool:

OvrrDrive
03-25-2008, 08:13 PM
I watched my brothers DVR on his cell phone through a slingbox and the quality was actually amazing. It probably gave 5-10 fps and the sound was very good. It was perfectly watchable.

Of course you need a good internet connection and a fast cell phone. But both are obtainable these days for a price.

tivoupgrade
03-25-2008, 08:52 PM
I always thought it would be interesting to create a SlingBox Club / Co-Op composed of members across the country willing to donate 'idle' time to the network of members.

The idea would be that people could 'donate' their idle cycles for use, and make their systems accessible to other members who could sign-up from remote locations.

Obviously, it would be a challenge to manage the scheduling, and attributes of each unit (network speeds, TiVo or non-TiVo, available content, etc), but I could see it working well with a relatively small number of people if they were all located in good strategic positions.

Clearly, there is no commercial opportunity there, lest ye be sued as previous posters have mentioned, but just as there are private 'filesharing' clubs, I could definitely see this happening (I suspect it already is...)

ciper
03-25-2008, 09:21 PM
I wouldn't mind to join such a club however -

Its against the slingbox TOS
The user could delete your entire NPL if he wanted.

m_jonis
03-25-2008, 09:54 PM
My impression is that it will be a cheap way to play your main Tivo, for example, in your bedroom. No monthly fees, no cable wiring.

Or if you're like the unlucky bunch of us in TW Cable "country" where every channel is set for 0x02 (except for the 6 HD local stations) so you cannot transfer it or watch it anywhere other than where you recorded it.

One of the main reasons I will not be buying another TivoHD or Series3.

wildtexaschef
03-25-2008, 11:52 PM
Or if you're like the unlucky bunch of us in TW Cable "country" where every channel is set for 0x02 (except for the 6 HD local stations) so you cannot transfer it or watch it anywhere other than where you recorded it.

One of the main reasons I will not be buying another TivoHD or Series3.


Slingbox can bypass the 0x02 protection. Soon with Slingbox HD Pro, Slingcatcher & Slingplayer 2.0 along with using your TiVo HD/S3 hooked up. Then you can watch Hi-Def programming anytime anywhere you want AND have no need to worry about the 0x02 settings whatsoever. :)

TGC

P.S. The slingcatcher does support HD, but won't be released till sometime in MAY. The Slingbox HD Pro won't be released till just before christmas, & Slingplayer 2.0 Should be released about the same time the slingcatcher is released.

holee
03-26-2008, 12:41 AM
It's really neat. A friend of mine has a sling hooked up to one of my receivers. He can use it to watch TV wherever he is, no matter what device he's using. So he can watch TV while driving, or when he's abroad in another country.

It's much easier and more flexible than a lot of other solutions out there.

dswallow
03-26-2008, 12:49 AM
I always thought it would be interesting to create a SlingBox Club / Co-Op composed of members across the country willing to donate 'idle' time to the network of members.

The idea would be that people could 'donate' their idle cycles for use, and make their systems accessible to other members who could sign-up from remote locations.

Obviously, it would be a challenge to manage the scheduling, and attributes of each unit (network speeds, TiVo or non-TiVo, available content, etc), but I could see it working well with a relatively small number of people if they were all located in good strategic positions.

Clearly, there is no commercial opportunity there, lest ye be sued as previous posters have mentioned, but just as there are private 'filesharing' clubs, I could definitely see this happening (I suspect it already is...)

A far less risky proposition is to match up individuals in search of each others programming. That limits exposure so it becomes very unlikely anyone's service could be shut down or even readily identified. It is of course more costly and maybe only applicable to those who are seeking a larger amount of programming. I could readily see myself setting up a separate receiver or DVR and SlingBox for someone in exchange for them doing the same in a market like the UK... well, if there weren't other options readily available, anyway. :)

TheNatureRoy
03-26-2008, 12:57 AM
I travel a ton, and hotel cable just doesn't cut it.

I actually recently purchased Locationfree -- Sony's take on a Slingbox-type device, which basically does the same thing only it also works with a PSP.

Actually, I'm going in reverse. I currently have a Directv HD DVR. I'm moving somewhere I can't mount a dish, so I'm thinking about going Tivo HD rather than using the local cable systems' HD DVR because I'm quite certain Locationfree with play nicely with Tivo HD and I'm not sure that would be the case with their box.