The Worldwide famous Slingbox is now here in India and it comes with two products, Slingbox 120 for normal Standard Definition signals and Slingbox Pro HD for High Definition signals. If you have no idea what Slingbox is, it is an add-on product for your cable set-top box/Video player/DTH (DVR) that will enable you to watch TV channels either from your computer or from a mobile phone on the go.
While Slingbox 120 is priced at Rs.7999, Slingbox Pro HD is priced at Rs.14999.
Slingbox should work with most DTH STB’s such as Tata Sky, Airtel Digital TV, Big TV, Dish TV, Sun Direct and Cable STB’s such as Hathway STB.
How this works?
You will connect your set-top box (cable or DTH) or Video player to Slingbox. This slingbox should in turn be connected to a local internet connection, preferably through a wired Ethernet cable (if you want, you can also use a router through an adapter).
Then, you go through a set-up process (one-time) by installing the set-up assistant on your PC or Mac.
From then, you can watch any TV channel or Video by logging in to your Sling account or through a mobile app (currently available for Ios, Android and Windows phones). While watching TV channels on Slingbox website is free, the mobile apps are not free; you need to shed out (one-time) $30 (nearly Rs.1340)
Basically, the Slingbox uploads the channel you wish to watch in real time (hence a fast Internet connection is preferred) and makes it available when you log in to your Sling account from any where. While this is nothing but just expanding the reach of your room TV, you also have alternatives that only deliver channels to your mobile phones; see Mundu TV and Airtel Mobile TV.
Note: Your Home Internet connection, Slingbox and the DVR/Video player/STB should always be ON for this to work, although it is not required for your TV to be ON.
My gut feeling is that this has all the required signs of being a disastrous product launch in India. It just wouldn’t work here, yet, if it involves so much money and effort to setup.