D-Link's Boxee Box Adds EchoStar's Slingbox App

D-Link said its Boxee Box for accessing Internet video and other content now supports EchoStar Technologies' SlingPlayer for Connected Devices application, allowing the $179 device to act as a second set-top box -- that's located anywhere there is a high-speed broadband connection.

When used with a Slingbox Solo or Pro-HD device connected to a cable or satellite set-top, the SlingPlayer app lets Boxee Box users watch live TV, change channels, and play back DVR recordings and video-on-demand.

"The addition of SlingPlayer greatly expands the content and capabilities of the Boxee Box by D-Link and brings today's connected home to yet another level," D-Link North America associate vice president of marketing Daniel Kelley said in a statement. "Missing your favorite show or game is a thing of the past. With SlingPlayer, people can easily enjoy and access their TV content with the ultimate convenience, from changing the channel to controlling the DVR."

The Boxee Box by D-Link includes an SD card slot, two USB ports, optical digital audio, HDMI output, 802.11n wireless and an Ethernet port. The Boxee software provides access to services including Netflix, Vudu, Pandora and OpenFilm, as well as "all the rest the Internet has to offer that will never make it to broadcast TV," according to Boxee, and provides integration with Facebook and Twitter.

Separately, New York-based Boxee is releasing a $49 USB-based dongle for the D-Link Boxee Box and other devices that will let users watch over-the-air TV. Slated to be available in January 2012, the USB dongle includes an antenna and OTA tuner.

TV tuners are already standard on digital television sets. However, Boxee says, the dongle will let it add features such as displaying how many people (and which of your friends) are watching a specific show in the channel listings. In the future, according to Boxee, the software also will be able to associate what you're watching live with what's available on the Internet to provide recommendations.

Boxee claims it has more than 1 million users. The company's investors include General Catalyst, Spark Capital and Union Square Ventures.