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Belkin takes on Slingbox with TV-to-net streamer box

Smartphone users pay extra

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Accessory maker Belkin is taking on Slingbox. Its @TV, which is set to go on sale next month, pulls in content from set-top boxes and other media players and streams it out over the internet to a dedicated playback app.

The compact box provides an Ethernet port for streaming, but it also incorporates Wi-Fi to allow mobile devices to tap in directly. Belkin said wireless-connected clients will be able to record feeds for offline viewing.

Belkin @TV

The @TV has composite- and component-video source feeds, plus analogue audio, and it'll output signals through a second set of these ports. It also has an IR transmitter on a cable to remotely control connected kit.

Mobile devices will be able to access your box over Wi-Fi or mobile broadband. Belkin said computers can access streams too, presumably through a browser. Certainly, it only talks about apps in the context of tablets and smartphones. Both iOS and Android will be supported.

Belkin @TV

Here's the catch, though. While the app will be (for now) free for tablets, smartphone users will have to cough up $13 (£8), another nod to Slingbox, which notoriously charges a lot extra for smartphone access - £20.99 for its iPhone app, for example.

The @TV itself costs $149 (£95). A UK price has yet to be set. ®

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