Netgear has just announced its Internet TV Player, a set-top box that allows users to play content from video streaming sites like YouTube, directly on their TV. Perhaps of more interest is the device’s built-in BitTorrent client, which makes it an ideal TV-torrent player as well.
Over recent years, TV-shows have become increasingly popular on BitTorrent. While some watch the shows directly on their computers, quite a few people prefer viewing them on a big screen TV. For the latter group, Netgear’s Internet TV Player might be worth checking out.
The new device can play videos from several large streaming sites, including YouTube, Google Video and Metacafe. However, its true power comes from the built-in BitTorrent client. Millions of people use BitTorrent to download TV-shows every week, so there are a lot of potential customers out there.
‘Whenever’ and ‘wherever’ are two words that are often heard when people explain why they use BitTorrent, and Netgear cleverly acknowledges this with their new player. “It is ideal for those who are geographically displaced from their preferred television content, such as international sporting events and Bollywood productions,” is how Netgear’s marketing promotes it.
If Netgear is indeed hoping for BitTorrent users to embrace the device, most of the potential lies outside the US, where 90% of all the TV-torrent downloads take place. The main reason being that fans sometimes have to wait for weeks or even months before the show airs on TV in their country.
For those who have a large library of video files downloaded already, the Internet TV Player also supports external USB drives. Plug it in, and all your videos will be available on your TV instantly, easy as that. Netgear expects that the Internet TV Player (ITV2000), priced at $200, will be available in stores early Summer 2009.