Boxee's latest TV smartener banishes wireless worries
Boxee’s clever software is already at the heart of our favourite video streamer, the D-Link Boxee Box – and now Iomega has integrated its skills into a device with a load of built-in storage.
Iomega TV with Boxee – a dark horse
Let’s be blunt here: the Iomega TV is a bit boring to look at. While the Boxee Box resembles a cube that’s melted in one corner, the Iomega is simply a dull black box. It could be a modem or a router. Still, it feels solid enough and is quiet in operation even when the hard disk is spinning up.
Iomega TV with Boxee – QWERTY remote
Like the Boxee Box, the Iomega has a remote with a keyboard on one side and general command buttons on the other. It’s bigger than the original, which should make it easier to use, but works via infrared rather than radio frequencies — meaning you always need line-of-sight. It’s also a bit fiddly, with button presses sometimes registering too many times and sometimes not at all. Get the app instead.
Iomega TV with Boxee – clever cataloguing
Boxee’s strengths are its usability and content gathering. Not only does it turn your messily-titled files into a beautifully-presented media library, it also provides links to web-hosted episodes and shows you might be missing. It’s like owning all of the world’s TV — or it would be if the UK had as many bundled apps as the US. They are coming, starting with iPlayer soon.
Iomega TV with Boxee – all formats
The Iomega will play almost any format imaginable, including HD MKV videos and AVIs. It even supports ripped Blu-rays in all their 1080p, 24fps glory. Happily, 3D also gets a look in, but for some unexplained reason there’s no HD audio soundtrack support. That won’t impact the average user, but for audiophiles it’s a deal-breaker – especially as the Boxee Box does them.
Iomega TV with Boxee – stutter-free
Streaming your media from a computer is OK, streaming from a NAS is better, but having it all stored internally is the only way to guarantee stutter-free playback at all times. Transfer your video and music files across your network to the Iomega’s 1TB HDD and they'll play flawlessly, without the need for any other network devices.
Iomega TV with Boxee + Network Storage review
The Iomega TV is a fine media streamer, but a lack of apps and iffy remote keep it behind the original Boxee Box