Thursday, May 14, 2009

SlingPlayer Mobile for iPhone Now Available but WiFi Only (FINALLY)

I've been waiting for the SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone for over 2 years now and it's finally here.  The problem is, I'm not as excited as I thought I would be once it finally available.  The iPhone SlingPlayer works great, looks awesome and is one of the coolest things you could ever buy for your iPhone.  Even though it's a $30 App, it's well worth the money if  you are looking for a way to watch live TV on your iPhone and already own a SlingBox at home.  This gives you yet another way to use your SlingBox from anywhere.  Well, almost anywhere...
The main problem is that it's WiFi only.  WTF?!?!  Are you kidding me?  It's like I just bought a Ferrari with a Honda engine because the dealer doesn't want anyone to drive over 70 or something ridiculous.  This is definitely not Sling Media's fault since the SlingPlayer Mobile already exists for many other smartphones and can run on almost every 3G network.  They were at the mercy of Apple and AT&T.

This can partially be blamed on Apple since they have the final say on all Apps in the iTunes store but most likely, AT&T demanded Apple and SlingPlayer set the app to WiFi only.  AT&T probably requested this because they know their 3G network sucks and that if thousands of people downloaded this app and used it on 3G on a regular basis, it would cripple their network and give them even less reliability than normal (if that's even possible). 

This is SO ANNOYING!  Hopefully this opens up to 3G support at some point down the road through an update but I'm not holding my breath.  This is still a great App and I think it's worth the $30 but it's going to be tough for a lot of people to justify that price point without being able to use it anywhere outside of their home or office or maybe a Starbucks.  There are plenty of free WiFi spots available throughout larger cities but it's just not the same as being able to walk or drive anywhere and be able to watch TV continuously. 

I've already noticed that this App is getting an average of 3 stars in the review section even though it's definitely a 5 star app had it worked with 3G as well.  I am both super excited and disappointed at the same time.  I guess we will just have to wait and see.  I am kind of used to it at this point...

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