Tuesday, August 02, 2005

I call it a Slingbox

“Some Folks Call it a Kaiser Blade, I Call it a Sling Blade”- Billy Bob Thornton in the movie Sling Blade.

“Some folks call “Slingbox” a poor non-user friendly gadget, I call it an early vision of our future Team Handball viewing future.”

What is a Slingbox?

Well in a nutshell, it’s a $250 gadget that you can plug into your cable, satellite or Digital Video Recorder at home, that will then “sling” the video over the internet to a remote location. Gee, I wonder how that could be used by a Team Handball fan living in the United States? Sounds pretty good doesn’t it. Here are some reviews on Slingbox:



Now for the all important question: Could I get a buddy in Europe to send me live broadcasts of Team Handball?

The answer is yes, but it would be a somewhat clunky setup due the Slingbox only being currently available for the US TV format (NTSC). They plan to have a PAL version out later this year, but some clever folks have used a PAL-NTSC converter in the loop to get it working now. Here’s an interview with the CEO which talks about Europe issues at the bottom: http://www.engadget.com/entry/1234000933050954/

So, theoretically, right now it could be done if the Europe connection has a slingbox, a PAL-NTSC converter, and a broadband connection. (And based on the reviews, I would also bet that the guy who sets it up in Europe would also have to be very patient and knowledgeable on this sort of thing.) All that would be needed on the US side is broadband. Nothing like bringing the team over Saturday afternoon for a live Handball Match from Europe.

And if live viewing isn’t critical and you have a Digital Video Recorder, you could always send the file of a game using Orb. http://www.orb.com/home/
With this setup, I think both sides of the Atlantic would need a DVR and broadband as well.

Of course, this is just a first look vision of what the future could be. Think back to what your first experience was on the internet in the early 90’s and compare it to your experience today.

I predict that sooner than you might think, you will have so many options for Handball viewing on Television that you’ll have a hard time deciding what to watch.