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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sling Media Slingbox M1



Sports fans this is a must buy product if you are unable to be at home to watch the game.   Too often it is easy to be away when the game is on and watching a game on DVR after you know the final score is less than exciting.  This product enables you to watch live anywhere you have Internet access.   If you put it on your cable box, you are able to access your DVR and your On-Demand from where ever you may be, with again the caveat that Internet access is necessary.   It can be WIFI or 4G or direct connect but Internet access is crucial.  

I found that computer access is very good.   You can actually use an onscreen remote to change channels or go to DVR or OnDemand just as if you were sitting in front of your TV.   Hooking an HDMI cable to my laptop I got an excellent picture on my flatscreen TV.  I was not as thrilled with the application on my tablet.   The remote was too small to use my fingers and I needed to use a stylus.   It did work and the picture was fine.   A caveat to Sling's claim of never any fees.   If you want an application for your phone or tablet, they charge you $14.99.   The tablet application will not work on your phone.   The phone application will work on your tablet with less resolution.   I was annoyed that they require two applications at $14.99 each to use your mobile devices.   It's not like I will be using both at once.  In fact if you try and log in on your tablet while you are running the Slingbox on your laptop you are given a choice of "too continue" and knock the laptop off or not too continue and continue using the laptop.  So they have the ability to keep you from having simultaneous users on different platforms so why charge you double for two mobile applications. 

Another caveat is that if you are on the road and want to watch the game, anyone at home trying to use the same TV you're accessing through the Slingbox will be thwarted.  The Slingbox grabs the cable box and it is in control.  The local user can not watch another channel while the Slingbox is being accessed.  Well they can but that prevent the use of the Slingbox.  (I tried.)  

Sling claims multiple devices can be used with their box.   I have only tested the Roku and it worked fine.   Much easier than lugging my laptop to the TV every time I want to use it. 

BTW I just thought maybe I should look at my Kindle Fire for the Slingbox and I would have to buy the application again, even though I bought it for my Acer Tablet.   I guess due to Amazon store selling it for the Kindle and Google Play Store where I bought it for my Android tablet.   Needless to say I am not spending $14.99 to put it on all my devices.

Overall this is pretty darn cool technology.   It would be better with out the multiple application fees. It would be better if the home user could watch a different channel while Sling is working.  Hey, you DVR one or sometimes more channels and watch another channel, why that can't be done with the Sling is over my pay grade.   I did try the Belkin TV and was told by their technical support that a laptop is not a mobile device so it would not work with my laptop.  I have since read in some forums that people have made it work with their laptops but I returned it.  If their tech support is not supporting laptops I have no interest in being a beta site.   I worked in computers for 25 years, if someone wants me to beta a product they can pay me.  

So the Slingbox does what I need it to do. 


Watch and control live TV on a tablet*, phone*, PC, or Mac
Play and schedule DVR recordings
WiFi connectivity and Ethernet port
Absolutely no monthly fees

Watch on a second TV anywhere via Apple TV, Chromecast, and Roku , Component and composite in/out ,Easy and quick set-up

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

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