Seeing as Google TV hasn't gained much traction and AppleTV requires conversion of your entire library into a format iTunes understands, one would think that Boxee's clever social media approach would give it the upper hand, but there are more than a couple of things keeping me from throwing down on the Boxee Box.
I'll start with what I love about Boxee Box. Two things: I love its simplistic UI and ability stream anything I throw at it. That alone is worth at least $100 bucks. Given that it works, of course.
I've had the opportunity to test it for a few days now and I've already run into many of the issues other tech blogs have been reporting such as general lagginess, crashes, and a polarized opinion base on the industrial design of the sunken cube shape.
For one, I don't mind the shape of the Boxee Box. When wireless HDMI kicks off later next year, I imagine stashing the device won't be much of an issue. Then again, when wireless HDMI takes off, I probably just run it off my laptop directly (and for free) and not have to deal with the box at all.
If I were to buy the Boxee Box, I'd use it primarily for streaming my local media. I have a Blu-Ray player I use to rip MKVs on my home PC. It'd be nice to be able to finally get that media streaming without headaches around the house.
As for Netflix and Hulu Plus - they're great services, I'm sure - but it's quite obvious the services won't be coming until much later, so if you're avid users of those services, I'd definitely place Boxee as a secondary option, seeing as there are much cheaper alternatives out there.
But alas, I'm a tech minimalist by heart. Tried and true. I really don't want another box stringing another wire into my TV. I'd like the ability to install Boxee directly inside my TV screen. Either that or stream it wirelessly.
But not until the stability issues are worked out. And not until the price drops down to $100. I'm all for great hardware and perpetuating start-ups with great ideas, but I'm probably going to wait until the product works out its alpha bugs before throwing down.
Anyone out there have a second take on the Boxee Box?