If you are looking for remote access via the Internet to everything your cable TV has to offer, the Slingbox 500 (MSRP $299.99) is perfect. It is inserted between the cable box and your TV and takes whatever you tune in (remotely) and sends it over the Internet to your device. With it’s easy setup, you can watch live TV or recorded programs from anywhere on my phone, tablet, laptop, and PC. I have it connected to my Fios HD DVR and it works great. Reminder: Just remember just like any streaming, it helps if you are in WiFi or have an unlimited data plan (for phones and tablets).
I have not owned a Slingbox prior to this on but for me the fact that you can stream directly through Wifi and not have to worry about running an ethernet line is to me a BIG plus. I hate spagetti unless it is on my plate. Anyway, I never have to worry about being out somewhere whether it is at the park, at a friends or a different state (or country for that matter), I always have the comfort of my own home channels with me so I never have to miss my Mets or Giants games. I have tested it here in NY when out and look forward to testing it out on some of our out of state weekend trips coming up.
I have seen reviews complaining that the ads ruin the experience. If you’re looking to stream your service with a PC, maybe this is an issue. I downloaded the FREE apple Slingplayer app for iPhone, and aside from a quick ad (which you can skip after 5 seconds similar to YouTube) you are off to the races. So far I’ve used it most on my iPhone and have screencast it to my Fire TV stick and the integration is just as great! If you really hate the ads, you could get the paid Slingplayer app ($15) but for me, the free version is perfectly ok, after a 5 second skip of the initial ad…..all is good!
You already pay for a cable or satellite subscription. But only by adding Slingbox can you take it anywhere in the world without additional monthly fees.
This is also great for students who are away from home. With the upcoming school year quickly approaching, it could be a great gift for the ones going off to college. (Kids, you are whelcome!)
Slingbox 500 features
- Watch and control 100% of the TV you already pay for on a tablet*, phone*, PC, or Mac with unlimited free apps
- View and manage DVR recordings
- Home TV interface via HDMI with live sports stats and a gallery view for easy program discovery
- Sort by program genre or set up favorites
- Watch on a second TV anywhere via Apple TV®, Chromecast®, Fire TV®, or Roku®*
- Connect via WiFi or Ethernet
- HDMI, component, and composite in/out
- Absolutely no monthly fees
Disclosure: I received the Slingbox 500 in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed in my review are my own. No other compensation was given.