Our Team Blog

Boxee Box Grows Into a Size 1.1

**UPDATE** MAY 18 - Boxee version 1.1.1.19092 is now available and rolling out starting today (May 18) through the weekend. This version contains volume control as a setting, and fixes to the way we were processing sound.

So it might only be a few decimal points difference from the current 1.0.4 release, but this version of the Boxee Box by D-Link has quite a few new things under the hood. We’ll be rolling this version out over the next few days to all Boxee Boxes, but if you can’t wait you can find instructions on manually updating your Boxee Box on our forums.

Here’s what we’ve got for you in our fifth update to the Boxee Box:

1) Browser Upgrades

Favorites (Bookmarks) & History - Now you can easily get back to pages you’ve just viewed or ones you visit most often.

Browser with Top Bar

Browser - Favorites

Browser - History

New On Screen Display (no auto-full screen*) - We’ve cleaned up the web playback OSD to let you see more of what’s going on in the background and to include access to a few more options down below.

Full Metal Jacket - Boxee Web Playback OSD

HTML 5 To The Max - We’ve improved our support for HTML 5 so you’ll now be able to access more content, like HBOGO.

HBO Go

2) Movie Trailers - What better way to keep up with the latest movie releases than by watching movie trailers on your TV until your heart’s content.

Movie Trailers

3) On Screen Display Loses Some Weight - We’ve revamped the OSD and included an awesome new seek bar for precise rewinding/fast forwarding, slimmed down the button count, and made it easier to see what’s going on behind the scenes. We’ve also removed the volume control for a more consistent experience.*

OSD v1.1

4) Customized Artwork / Info for Media Files - Why let Boxee pick movie art and descriptions when you can have your own? Import video into Boxee and add your own artwork and metadata to accompany it with NFO files. Works like a charm on home movies.

5) Local File Playback - We now have support HFS formatted drives, seek functionality inside music playback, and you can filter local files by source.

6) Share Where You Want - now you can specify whether you want to share that ColdSteel video to Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr with a helpful character counter built-in.

Share Pop-Up

7) MLB.TV Upgrades - This new version has enabled a lot of updates to the MLB.TV app so now you’ll be able to watch live and archived games, jump to specific innings or game events, see pop-up details on every pitch, and have a much easier time rewinding and fast-forwarding in games.

8) More Languages - The Boxee Box is on sale in 34 countries. While “Boxee” translates well into all of them, the rest of the words on screen are a bit off. Now users can enjoy Boxee in German, French, Italian, Spanish, Swedish, Hebrew, Danish, Dutch, Turkish, Russian, Arabic, Portugese (Brazil), Czech, Norwegian, Finnish, Polish.

Language Support

9) New Content - we threw in some extra content just for good measure.

Wealth TV Logo

A team of acclaimed producers create fresh programs on private jets and exotic first-class travel as well as intellectual discussion on money and philanthropy, all in HD.

SnagFilms Logo

Committed to finding the world‘s most compelling documentaries, whether from established heavyweights or first-time filmmakers to make them available to the wide audience these titles deserve. SnagFilms serves up full-length documentary films for free.

Conclusion

We hope you like all the changes (full release notes here), and we always love to hear your feedback on Facebook, Twitter, and on our forums.

You may have noticed the * next to the volume and auto full-screen features above. We’ve spent a lot of time discussing internally and have decided to create a more consistent experience by removing features that work inconsistently. While it might not instantly be apparent, over the next few versions we will streamline the interface so that everything works the same, no matter whether you’re in an HTML 5 app, a normal web page, playing a movie file, or watching video from inside an application.

**UPDATE - We have heard from enough passionate users about the volume control functionality that we will be bringing it back via settings in the next update. We will continue to search for an elegant solution that works across content sources as well.

**2ND UPDATE - If your sound isn’t being processed properly in the new version - we have fixed the issue and it will be part of a new version rolling out to users this week (that also includes the volume control update above).

May 11, 2011 at 8:59 am

Giving Away a Boxee Box at Music Hack Day

Part of what I love about my home theatre rig is playing music through Boxee. Whether it’s my music library or streaming apps like Pandora and Last.fm, Boxee’s gorgeous interface is the first listening experience I’ve used that feels like it belongs in a living room. Music apps continue to be strongly represented in our Top 25 apps each week and this month’s Music Tech Summit in San Francisco presents a prime opportunity to up that count even more.

SF Music Hack Day LogoIdan and I will be attending this year’s Music Hack Day to connect with the brightest developers in the music industry and we’re bringing a sack of goodies along. On hand to help hackers bring music services to the television, we’re holding another friendly hacker face-off with a serious prize up for grabs: a Boxee Box (as soon as it is available).

This 15-16 May, we’ll be awarding the hotly anticipated hardware from our partners at D-Link to the best music app to be completed at the weekend codefest. And, if that wasn’t enough, we’ll have a Boxee T-shirt for every hacker that completes a Boxee app during the fest.

All you need to win is to get on the waitlist for the event, show up ready to hack, and produce an app that is ear-popping, face-melting, brain-blistering wholesale-monkey-rodeo awesome.

Well, maybe not this awesome…

star-wars-awesome

…but something close.

May 5, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Winners of the Boxee + Twilio Developer Contest

And lo, from every field and foundry they came. They - heroes of their own time - answered a clarion call of competition and sallied forth onto the pitch to win honor, glory and some sweet, sweet hardware. Writing poetry in code and bending the boundaries of what was once thought possible, the proud corps of engineers who committed their sweat and their blood in the Boxee + Twilio Developer Contest asserted to the world that method and medium need no longer be segregated by the ancient shackles of traditional telecommunication. They proved that TV and telephone did, at long last, belong together, and in so doing became more than competitors.

They became legends of these fine Internets.

As strong as this competitive field was, sadly we are forced to select a first and second place. It was not at all easy, but after great deliberation by our rockstar panel of judges including Boxee CEO Avner Ronen, Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson, Boxee Platform Chief Idan Cohen and Twilio Head of Marketing Danielle Morrill, a winner has emerged.

Earning first place, a netbook from Twilio and a Boxee Box *before* it is available in stores is:

Bring the Popcorn
Drew Baumann and Brett Hazen

Screenshot_BringThePopcorn

Bring the Popcorn is a fun app to quickly organize a movie party directly from Boxee. Using a simple interface and leveraging the Twilio API, users can add their friends, sort out who brings what, and SMS those friends to see when they are coming over. The app was developed by a team of Luther College CS Majors Drew Baumann and Brett Hazen who flew out for the hack day event at Twilio HQ this past weekend.

Finishing in a close second and netting themselves a netbook from Twilio and an Acer Revo from Boxee is none other than:

Find My Phone
Fuzz the Destroyer

Screenshot-Boxee-2Prolific Boxee developer Fuzz the Destroyer adds to his extensive portfolio of Boxee apps with a dead simple and crazy useful entry called “Find My Phone.” The appropriately titled app uses the Twilio API to find where you put your phone with a clean interface and a wry sense of humor. Helpful for every Boxee install, this app even helped me find my own handset stuck behind a seat in the airport terminal in which this announcement was written.

All competitors who submitted an app will get our undying respect for joining our growing family… and a Boxee T-shirt. The entries in this contest were inspiring to all of us at Boxee and Twilio, and indicative of the radical change the living room is going to see in the next few years - a change our developer community is turning into reality every day.

April 15, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Step 1: Make a Boxee Box (no need to cut a hole)

First and foremost thanks to everyone who came out to the Music Hall of Williamsburg Monday night - it was a great event and was fun to see so many users, partners, and press in person. We posted the details of the Beta Monday night, and if you haven’t done so yet, register on our pre-release list to get an invite to the Beta over the coming weeks.

So there’s been a lot of talk about the Boxee Box over the past 36 hours and we wanted to give you the “official” version.

The Boxee Box Front

It was designed by Astro Studios, the team who crafted designs for the Xbox 360, watches from Nike, Alienware PCs. It’s being built by D-Link, the leading networking company for homes & small businesses. Working with D-Link means that we’ll be able to design, build, and release a Boxee Box at a low cost to a ton of etail and retail outlets.

As the title indicates, this is step 1. Soon, every device in your living room will connect to the Internet, and we hope Boxee will be the software that runs on them. For now though, the Boxee Box is the easiest way to get Boxee onto that huge HDTV in your living room. Here’s how you can make that connection happen…

Boxee Back

  • HDMI - one inexpensive HDMI cable to connect The Boxee Box to your TV
  • SPDIF - hi-definition digital audio that will pass through Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound and DTS to your A/V Receiver
  • Stereo Audio (RCA) - red & white cables from the 80′s, 90′s and today
  • 2 x USB ports - add devices like external hard drives and more
  • Wireless 802.11n & Wired Ethernet - Cords if you got ‘em, wireless if you don’t
  • RF Remote Control - control playback from anywhere

And although the above pictures look really classy, they don’t give you an idea of the size of the box. Here’s a preliminary image to give you an idea of scale.

Boxee Badunkadunk + Coke Can

Rest assured the Boxee Box will fit into your entertainment center. If the look doesn’t quite fit with your decor, not to worry. The RF remote means you can place the box out of sight and still control it. Of course, the Boxee Box prefers being on top : )

We’ll reveal more about the Boxee Box by D-Link at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, but if you’d like to see a little more, check out the new page for the Box on our completely re-designed website.

- Andrew

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December 9, 2009 at 9:00 am