PlayLater Brings DVR Capability to the Online Video WorldWednesday, June 29, 2011, 9:00 AM ET|Posted by Will RichmondEver find yourself in a situation where you want to watch online video, but you can't actually get online or can only get a sub-par connection? In these cases, it would have been convenient to pre-record the videos you want and watch them at your convenience, as is the norm with DVRs. This is the simple, but highly compelling use case that PlayLater, a new product being released in closed beta today, addresses.
With PlayLater, you first download the client software (PC-only for now) and are then presented with an interface where you can search and select your desired programs from a variety of the most-popular free and paid online video sources (e.g. Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, etc.). I gave PlayLater a try and was able to easily find and record the latest episode of "Glee" on Hulu. Because PlayLater is recording, not downloading, the program, it requires as much time as the duration of the program and episode - just like using a DVR with TV, and of course the PC must be on while recording.
Categories: DVR, Technology
Topics: MediaMall Technologies, PlayLater, PlayOn
PlayOn Upgrades to Allow Streaming to iPadTuesday, September 14, 2010, 5:28 PM ET|Posted by Will RichmondPlayOn has upgraded its software to allow its Premium users to stream video from their PC to their iPad using either 3G or WiFi networks. The upgrade adds to PlayOn's HTML5 solution for streaming to the iPhone and iPod Touch announced in August. As a result PlayOn users can now access their own media files plus lots of premium streaming content when out-of-home. This is akin to what Sling enables except with PlayOn there's no hardware purchase or rental required. Jeff Lawrence, CEO of MediaMall Technologies, the company behind PlayOn, gave me a quick update recently.
The PlayOn software runs on the PC and streams to DLNA-compliant supported devices such as the major gaming consoles and digital set-tops like Moxi, Netgear's EVA2000 and others. After a 14-day trial, pricing is either one-time $80 or annual ($30 for first year and $20/year thereafter). Jeff wouldn't share the exact number of paying subscribers, but did say PlayOn is getting 1,000-3,000 downloads per day and is converting approximately 30%, so it sounds like it might be gaining 300-1,000 paid users per day (I'm guessing it's probably at the low end, and I don't know the churn rate).