If you’re of the type like me where your friends make comments such as “Of course you have a new gadget”, you might want to take a look at the Slingbox. Basically, it’s a little device that allows you only to be an internet connection away from your home tv. I discovered Slingbox while I was sitting on a plane, waiting for everyone to board, when I noticed the person next me was watching a hockey game on his phone. My curiosity led me to ask him, “Is that live or is that a video?” It was indeed live and to prove it, he used the buttons on his phone to change the channels. (Can you imagine how wide my eyes were at this moment?) He even handed me his phone to play with while he re-shifted his bags in the overhead compartment. The best part is that Slingbox does not require any sort of subscription. All you need is basically high speed internet at home (check) , a computer (most likely a laptop – check, check) and/or a Windows Mobile phone (check, check, check). As you may have guessed, it took me probably all of one or two days to purchase one for myself (and another week or so for it to be delivered).
I have to say while it was a little expensive for the Pro model and may be slightly tricky for non-tech savvy people to setup, it has so far been a worthwhile purchase. I find myself thankful that I have it 1) when I’m at work and I can’t really pull myself away from my desk to watch the Cubs game in the break room, 2) when I’m in a hotel (like tonight) and I have all of 10 channels to choose from, or 3) when I can’t sleep and am too lazy to go into the living room (I don’t have a tv in my bedroom) so I use my phone. The mobile phone player does cost an additional $30 but it is a one time license purchase. Other than that, I definitely would recommend it to anyone who travels and does not want to miss some of their favorite shows or doesn’t want to go through the hassel of carrying dvds with them on the road. (Oh yeah, did I mention you can also connect it to your DVR and your DVD player?)