Boxee Box Live USB Tuner "coming soon"

A popular idea right now is to cut the cable bill and supplement it with cheaper offerings from Netflix or Amazon and free services like Hulu or over-the-air HD broadcasting from local stations. Some people may remember the Boxee Box and its accompanying review here on Neowin. The Boxee Box has received some updates and added features since then, though it is still limited. Boxee aims to change that, however.

According to GigaOM, the company is readying a live USB TV tuner to be released in January; the information comes about due to an unreleased build of Boxee 1.5.

What would a live USB TV tuner do? It would enable live television in HD over the air. Local stations (FOX, NBC, CBS, ABC, etc) already provide free HD broadcasts if you have a tuner or HD antennas that can receive the broadcasts. Boxee has stated that 89 of the 100 top shows are available on these free networks. One can gather from this that the company plans to allow the tuner to be the next step towards ditching a cable or satellite TV connection. Viewers who use the tuner and Boxee Box will now be able to switch between live TV and on-demand-content without switching TV inputs, with no additional cost on a monthly basis. This will set Boxee up as a competitor to offerings like Google TV (which require you to have a cable box to view live TV).

No comment from Boxee or word on official cost of the tuner seems to be available. In the meantime, check out this video about Boxee Live TV below.

Video Courtesy of: GigaOM

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8 Comments

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It's coming to XBMC, but in the form of a full PVR frontend. It got taken out of the next release as it's taking a long time but they want to get it right. I would expect it in another 6 or 12 months.

netizen said,
It's coming to XBMC, but in the form of a full PVR frontend. It got taken out of the next release as it's taking a long time but they want to get it right. I would expect it in another 6 or 12 months.

I know. Last I heard it was expected for the release after Eden. I follow the XBMC development pretty closely. Still, would love to see this sort of thing push back down stream to XBMC even though it's not full PVR.

I am only interested in this because I wouldn't have to change sources from the boxee (my room has no cable line going to it so i use the boxee exclusively for content) to my tv's built in tuner. Having live tv integrated into the boxee interface would be nice. Not sure if its 49.99 nice though.

Fedr0 said,
What would be the difference between this and a normal DVB-whatever tuner?

For one DVB tuners are useless in North America.
If you're talking about ATSC tuners, the difference is they don't work with the Boxee box.

This is still pretty useless though since pretty much all TV's already have built-in tuners. It would be a completely different story though if you could use a Boxee Box as a DVR, then it might be useful.

giantpotato said,

For one DVB tuners are useless in North America.
If you're talking about ATSC tuners, the difference is they don't work with the Boxee box.

This is still pretty useless though since pretty much all TV's already have built-in tuners. It would be a completely different story though if you could use a Boxee Box as a DVR, then it might be useful.


Not completely as you'd have to switch remotes (don't drop the word "univeral") less and have one interface to rule them all...
Apart from your consoles that is...

GS:mac

giantpotato said,

For one DVB tuners are useless in North America.

You damn Americans always thinking you are at the center of the world!