A low cost Smart TV alternative?
Like most tech-nerds, I love being able to quickly stream media from one device to another. Also like most tech-nerds, I hate dealing with freaking cords. The TV tends to be across the room from the couch. Which means using my smartphone's HDMI-port renders me phone-less for the duration of the movie.
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Thankfully, HSTi is bringing a new product to CES 2011 that promises to alleviate this terrible plight. Their Wireless Media Stick allows you to stream content from any Android device to any PC, Mac or device with a USB playback port. It even works with Google TV or your gaming console.
All you do is plug the stick into the display device and it creates a wireless bridge between the device and your Android handset or tablet. It comes with an Android app that handles control functionality and turns your phone into a streaming powerhouse.
My main concern with a product like this is lag- no one wants to watch choppy video because the router gets clogged with traffic or because your home is in a 3G dead-zone. There's a definite up-shot to just sticking your files on a USB drive and plugging them in. Or taking the time to set up a decent home network.
The big advantage here would be the ability to stream media from Netflix or Hulu straight from your phone to your TV. The stick basically acts like a poor man's Google TV in that case, with your phone serving as the "remote". The advantage this has over other streaming services? No monthly fees, and no blocked networks.