New York-based Boxee has joined forces with system-on-chip solutions provider Sigma to move its content streaming and DVR services beyond its own dedicated hardware and into smart TVs being produced by other manufacturers.
The two companies say they’ve been working together to put Boxee’s services, which include a cloud-based DVR, Internet applications and a social TV guide, into Sigma’s UXL processor. The end goal has been to make it “plug and play easy” for TV manufacturers to include Boxee’s cloud based entertainment solution in their upcoming television sets.
Avner Ronen, CEO of Boxee said: “We expect Sigma’s UXL platform will be the easiest way for manufacturers to create a Smart TV experience that’s delightful to use, and robust enough to be relevant for years to come.”
Moving away from the additional set-top box model is a huge step for Boxee. However, with increasing pressure from rivals such as Roku, Google Fiber and the rumoured update to Apple TV, as well as video game consoles such as the Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii U, it’s now more important for the company than ever before to get inside people’s living rooms. And quickly.
On the flipside, very few smart TVs have won critical acclaim for having an innovative or frictionless interface for streaming content or accessing Internet services. Therefore, any takeup from TV manufacturers will benefit both parties; the market share and brand perception of Boxee is increased, while the smart TV capabilities, and general customer satisfaction, is improved for TV hardware manufacturers.
The Boxee platform gives users access to a number of broadcast channels in the United States, such as ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, PBS and Univision. In addition, consumers can record an unlimited number of TV shows and movies before storing them in the cloud, where they can be accessed from their TV, computer, tablet or smartphone. It also has a whole host of Internet applications which are common on Smart TVs, although it’s been said that these can also be customized by the TV manufacturer on Sigma’s UXL platform.
The full feature set for Boxee on Sigma’s UXL platform is as follows:
- Full turn-key solution
- Zero touch integration
- No retail maintenance
- Boxee’s award-winning interface
- TV Channels + Internet Apps + DVR in one device
- Social TV discovery with Facebook integration
- World’s first Cloud DVR with unlimited recordings
- Integrated second-screen experience with DVR playback from anywhere
- Fast time-to-market
Opera Software announced a partnership with Boxee last month, allowing its Opera Devices SDK to power the company’s streaming media player and bring a range of HTML5 apps including Facebook, YouTube, Spotify and Vimeo to its set-top box.
The UXL-based platform announced today is being shown first-hand at CES 2013. Click here for more of our CES 2013 coverage.
Image Credit: Boxee