Slingbox joining tech graveyard of discontinued products
It’s high praise when a tech columnist purchases a product he or she reviewed once that review has been published.
Among the products yours truly chose to buy back in the day was a Slingbox, a gadget which when connected to your television (or cable box), let you watch live "local" TV channels or programs you recorded on your home DVR, even if you happened to be thousands of miles away. It came to represent "place-shifting," a liberating concept of watch-anywhere television that is less miraculous today than it was around 2005 when late Slingbox founder Blake Krikorian unveiled the product.
All these years later I still have an old Slingbox connected to a TV in my basement. While I haven’t taken advantage of it as much lately, especially with travel cut back due to Covid, I do still it use it here and there, even in the house when my family is watching something else on TV. As a diehard New York sports fan, I always enjoyed being able to catch the locals from afar when I was on the road.
I bring all this up now because Sling Media announced it was discontinuing Slingbox products. And while I understand the business realities that led to the company’s decision, it still brings a tinge of sadness.
Those of you with Slingbox’s can get details on how long existing models will be supported at the Slingbox website. Slingbox servers will be permanently taken offline in 24 months. Until then most Slingbox models will continue to work normally, with the number of supported devices steadily decreasing as apps become outdated or lose compatibility. And that's too bad.
What products in the tech graveyard do you miss the most?