Updated Legalized SlingPlayer 3G TV joins App Store ranks
'No, we didn't' vs. 'Yes, we did'
MWC As expected, a 3G-enabled version of Sling Media's TV player for the iPhone has found its place among the 150,000-or-so apps in Apple's App Store.
On Monday at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Sling Media announced the availability of the 3G SlingPlayer Mobile - a mere week and a half after AT&T gave its go-ahead for that app's access to its beleaguered 3G network.
With the updated app, slingers who own a Slingbox Solo, Pro, or Pro-HD and an iPhone will now be able to have TV content slung to them over the mobile airwaves, just as they could over Wi-Fi until AT&T and Apple gave their blessing to the update, version 1.2.
3G had a long and bumpy ride to the SlingPlayer Mobile. As we reported last June, AT&T initially didn't allow Sling Media access to its 3G network, citing bandwidth congestion. At that time, however, AT&T had no problem with Major League Baseball jumping aboard.
Then last week, Big Phone had a change of heart. In a statement at that time, AT&T's Mobility and Consumer chief Ralph de la Vega said that Sling Media had "made important changes to more efficiently use 3G network bandwidth and conserve wireless spectrum so that we were able to support the app on our 3G mobile broadband network."
Sling Media spokesperson John Santoro, however, told us differently, saying that there had only been "some very minor additions to the application over the one we submitted last spring."
But Sling Media general manager John Gilmore quickly took the AT&T line, telling Ars Technica: "We actually have been working very intensively with AT&T to get the 3G streaming approved."
Whatever. As in most cases involving official company statements, the truth is undoubtedly floating around somewhere in the cracks between stories.
In any case, the app is now available. Depending upon where you live, SlingPlayer Mobile will set you back $29.99, £17.99, or €23.99. ®
Too much power to AT&T
It makes my blood boil to think of the control Apple have allowed AT&T to have over the content of the app store. The iPhone is supposedly an international must-have but policies about approval of apps seem to give too much power to AT&T. Apple sort your act out - this is one of the reasons why I haven't got (and won't be getting) an iPhone.
It's just AT&T that have this control freakery (well, and Apple.) T-Mobile doesn't care (and, is also GSM so you can just take your phone from AT&T straight over). Verizon doesn't care. Sprint doesn't care. Locally, I Wireless and US Cellular don't care either.
Unfortunately for the GSM users here in the states, AT&T and T-Mobile are both absolutely glacial in installing 3G, it's very common to have EDGE only from both unless you're in a big city. (We don't have T-Mobile here, but I Wireless JUST upgraded to EDGE last year!) In contrast, Verizon has a huge network that's nearly all EVDO, Sprint has almost all EVDO (maybe all EVDO by now), and US Cellular (the regional carrier) has blanket EVDO throughout the region. I'd love to get a GSM phone but unless you live in a big city, the CDMA/EVDO carriers are cleaning GSM's clock here in the states. Here's hoping LTE comes out fast enough that I can just get an LTE phone fairly soon (Verizon is planning a very agressive LTE rollout, AT&T is planning LTE, most carriers both GSM/UMTS and CDMA/EVDO are planning on LTE -- except Sprint who's got some Wimax rolled out.)
It's free on my Mac or your PC, why $29? Because they can I guess. But not from me they can't.
Anyone got this working with o2?
Doesn't work on o2 3G for me - Sling say they may be blocking the app??
Re: Just AT&T
"It's just AT&T that have this control freakery (well, and Apple.) T-Mobile doesn't care (and, is also GSM so you can just take your phone from AT&T straight over)."
Ah, but you can't. Different 3G frequencies means you're on EDGE only if you switch. Might make SlingPlayer a less than optimal experience.