Thursday, May 14, 2009

From Cable to Boxee & Hulu

The BusinessWeek's technology reporter, Arik Hesseldahl's latest article, Boxee Battles Big Media got me thinking about my own media viewing habits. I am one of those folks who no longer have any cable subscription, relying instead on the web for movies and tv shows.

Intead of cable, I am hooked to Boxee to watch movies and TV shows. I run the Linux alpha version of Boxee on my ThinkPad R52 (Ubuntu 8.10) and the Windows alpha version of Boxee on my IdeaPad S10 netbook (Windows XP).

Currently, only the Linux and Mac alpha versions of Boxee are downloadable from Boxee's website. I am one of the invited beta testers in the currently closed testing of the Windows XP version of Boxee.

I must say that I am extremely impressed by the stability and functionality of both the Linux and the Windows versions of this software, which is technically in alpha stage. Moreover, the Windows alpha version of Boxee runs smoothly on my IdeaPad S10 netbook without any jerkiness in the video. Typically, I connect my ThinkPad or IdeaPad to the LCD HD TV's VGA port and the audio to my living room's sound system, thereby enabling me to watch a movie or TV episode on a large screen HD TV. Not surprisingly, I don't miss canceling my cable subscription.

Most of what I watch on Boxee comes from the following two sources:
  • Hulu.com (which has an extensive collection of movies and episodes of TV series)

  • Joost.com (an internet TV service with a smaller collection than Hulu.com)
It is true that you can also watch movies and TV shows via a browser at Hulu.com and Joost.com. However, as an aggregator, Boxee does a good job of consolidating everything on a convenient and simple-to-navigate user interface.

In addition to Boxee, I also watch movies and TV episodes from the following websites:
I don't have that much time to watch TV, but if you are heavy TV watcher and wonder whether there are free online alternatives to cable, see:

If you can't find what you're looking for in the "open" web and are interested to search in the underground web but don't know how, consult the following PCWorld's articles:

Happy viewing!

See also: Hulu: A Victim of Its Own Success?

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