Product Review: Slingbox 500 Taps Into the Power of Your Cable TV
This post brought to you by Slingbox. The content and opinions expressed below are that of RotoRob.
If you love sports and are into Fantasy sports, you probably also love statistical formulas.
Well, here’s a new one for you:
Cable television + Slingbox 500 = Universal access on your phone, tablet, laptop or other televisions to all your programming.
That’s right, the Slingbox500, which retails for approximately US$299, allows you to stream your cable service through a single interface and watch it on virtually any device — anywhere, and anytime, as long as you’re connected.
Stuck at your cousin’s wedding during March Madness? No problem. Just pull out your phone and it’s game on. Your aunt’s birthday party is seriously going head to head with the NFL playoffs? Really? Who does that? Well, it’s not an issue anymore, thanks to the Slingbox.
Watch live and recorded sports, shows and movies without having to pay any extra cable fees and with no monthly charges. It’s a sports junkie’s dream come true. (Well, we suppose the ultimate dream would likely also involve Gina Carrano, but this is a close second.)
Basically, the Slingbox 500 transforms your television into a smart TV. No, it still can’t do your homework for you, but it makes it a snap to find the shows you’re seeking or you can use the handy on-screen gallery view to set up your faves. Looking for something specific? Just use the unit’s intuitive filters.
It’s fantastic for sports, because you can view all the scores and stats while you’re watching the game. It’s almost like being at the controls of the USS Enterprise, except you don’t have the cool futuristic chair, you’re not wearing an ugly shirt (well, you might be) and Lt. Uhura isn’t there, cheering you on. Other than that, it’s exactly the same.
Unique to the Slingbox 500 is an enhanced Slingplayer for iPad interface that not only provides a handy gallery view to make it easy to find programs, but also includes live sports stats (sweet!) and social media integration. #HowGroovyIsThat?
The picture quality is top drawer, offering HD video up to 1080p, and you can even play and schedule DVR recordings through the device. Want to watch on another television set anywhere in the world? Can of corn, people. You can access it through Apple TV, Chromecast or Roku.
And with the Blockbuster on Demand app, you’ll have access to thousands of movies, so you might want to invest in a popcorn maker.
Installation is fairly simple as the Slingbox 500 includes WiFi, Ethernet, HDMI, composite and component in/out connections. You’ll be up and running in minutes.
Wait a second. Doesn’t your cable or satellite provider have an app allowing you to watch television remotely? Sure. But you generally can only access at best a quarter of the channels that you get at home. The Slingbox 500 gives you remote access to every single channel in your cable lineup. Game, set, match.
In addition to being available through the Slingbox store, the product is also offered at several key retailers, including Amazon.com, BestBuy, TigerDirect, Target and Walmart (in the U.S.) and Amazon.ca, BestBuy, Staples and Walmart among others (in Canada).