Popbox settop box unveiled
Syabas Technology LLC, makers of the Popcorn Hour products, today announced the Popbox “for big screen everything”, which they describe as “a small, $129 open platform settop box that streams music, movies, photos, games, social media updates and more to todayâ€™s HDTVs”.
The Popbox supports most audio and video file types and can access content from HD video camcorders and external drives via its 3 built-in USB ports. Syabas is touting the Popbox’s ability to play virtual any file and content type, its ease of use and the open development platform, allowing 3rd party companies to develop apps specifically designed for the Popbox platform (similar to Roku’s channel store).
Popbox home screen overlay
Popbox movies screen
Popbox music screen
Popbox popapps screen
The Popbox measures 8 x 6 x 1.25 inches, making it a compact device. It has component video and HDMI outputs, supporting full 1080p HD video. Audio outputs include stereo analog audio and S/PDIF optical.
As you can see from the above screenshots, the Popbox looks like it has a very clean, easy to use interface. You’ll be able to view local content, as well as online content, all from one device. It supports most audio, video & photo formats and online content partners like Netflix, Facebook, Revision 3, Twitter, Shoutcast and others.
The Popbox looks amazing! My only concern is the lack of WiFi, which may prevent this device from becoming a mainstream product and competing with Roku devices and the Boxee box. If a Popbox model with builtin WiFi is released, I believe it will have a much greater success in the market.
The Popbox is expected to be available in March 2010 for $129.
Popbox Wi-Fi Update: Popbox representatives have informed me that there will also be a version with 802.11n WiFi included (with b/g probably included as well), at an expected price point of $149.