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A cord cutter’s look at the Consumer Electronics Show 2017

Consumer Electronics Show

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is one of the biggest tech trade shows in the world, with over 160,000 people descending on Las Vegas every January to get a look at what will be new, hot, and exciting this year.

For tech lovers, the show is like Disneyland, Cedar Point, Sea World and Busch Gardens all rolled into one giant event.

We were lucky enough to be in attendance this year and we were able to meet with a wide range of representatives from companies like Sling TV, Mohu Antennas, NewsOn, Tablo and many others.

We’re tremendously excited about the following products appearing at CES this year that are specifically for cord cutters.

Tablo DROID Android-Based Software DVR

A Tablo DVR with an HDMI port has long been the desire of many cord cutters. Now, Tablo DROID software is giving cord cutters the ability to connect with Android TV-based streaming devices with its easy Tablo interface — beginning with Nvidia Shield.

Instructions are easy to use, simply connect a USB over-the-air tuner and an antenna to the Nvidia shield and download the Tablo DROID DVR app. Now, you are ready to search, record and watch live HDTV on any Android set-top-box and you won’t need the Tablo over-the-air DVR hardware to do it.

The Tablo DROID app for the Google Play store will be released in the second quarter of 2017.

Tablo LIVE ‘Antenna Anywhere’ Stick

The Tablo Live ‘Antenna Anywhere’ Stick was introduced at CES in Las Vegas this week. This is an amazing product that will make any over-the-air antenna “smart” and promises free over-the-air television on pretty much any device.

Here are some details for the Tablo LIVE stick:

  • It is a single-tuner WiFi device that turns any over-the-air antenna into a smart antenna
  • Distributes over-the-air HDTV programming over home networks via WiFi
  • Can be placed anywhere in the home to ensure the best possible positioning for over-the-air reception
  • Enables consumer to watch live HDTV programming via Tablo apps (www.tablotv.com/apps) on mobile devices and streaming set-top-boxes

 

Tablo says, “apps for Tablo LIVE will have a user-friendly interface and allow consumers to browse an on-screen 24-hour grid guide with episode and series details as well as launch live broadcast TV streams. Tablo LIVE apps will be free to download and no guide data subscription will be required.”

The Tablo LIVE ‘antenna anywhere’ stick is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2017 with an anticipated MSRP of $99 USD.

Tablo CLOUD DVR Storage

Tablo announced a new proof-of-concept Cloud DVR option at CES this year, a service that will bring Tablo’s best-in-class over-the-air TV experience to even more platforms.

According to Tablo, their CLOUD DVR storage is intended to be used with the Tablo LIVE ‘Antenna Anywhere’ Stick to add online recording storage and DVR functionality. Tablo Cloud is a subscription service and comes with a monthly fee that offers a set number of hours of cloud DVR storage — no pricing or plans have currently been announced yet, but we expect they will be coming soon.

“Since 2013, Nuvyyo has been focused on making Tablo the defacto app for live TV on the widest variety of Internet-connected screens,” says Grant Hall, CEO at Nuvyyo, the makers of Tablo. “Today’s announcements strengthen that commitment and provide consumers with even more choice in how they watch and record over-the-air HDTV.”

TCL TV on wall

Roku TVs

On January 4, Roku showed off its new 4K HDR Roku-powered TVs with stunning Dolby Vision HDR from TCL. The contemporary design, powerful picture performance and smart value are highly appealing to cord cutters.

One of the best features of the 4K HDR Roku-powered TVs is that they run the latest version of the Roku operating system (7.5) that includes more than 4,500 streaming channels, providing more than 450,000 movies and TV episodes. The live-TV pause feature is guaranteed to be a hit with consumers.

“TCL is taking the TV viewing experience to a whole new level with an array of models boasting leading technology like Dolby Vision for the best HDR experience in the market,” said Chris Larson, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, TCL North America. “Consumers consistently rank picture quality as one of the most critical factors when it comes to buying televisions and TCL is listening. We believe the importance of HDR will continue to intensify in 2017 and our new TCL Roku TVs will deliver on this technology, allowing us to maintain our rapid growth in the U.S.”

Not only is this a premium picture quality TV, but it will also come at an affordable price — just $229 for a 32-inch TV, $329 for 40-inch, $499 for 48-inches and $649 for 55-inches. You can preorder on Amazon.

Mohu AirWave Antenna

“Free TV everywhere” is the catch phrase being associated with the launch of the Mohu AirWave antenna at this year’s CES.

The AirWave is a first-of-its-kind, stand-alone device that takes the over-the-air signal and turns it into an IPTV stream for its app. It joins live, local broadcast TV with free streaming channels across popular streaming devices, including Apple TV, Roku, Chromecast, Fire TV, Android, iOS, and more.

It is easy to use, simply plug in the power, give it access to local TV signals and WiFi, and you will be able to watch TV broadcasts along with content from numerous streaming services. A nice touch of the AirWave viewing app is that it also serves as a program guide.

“At Mohu, our mission is to continue evolving and improving the cord cutting viewing process for consumers,” says Mark Buff, founder and CEO of Mohu. “Watching TV should be a personalized experience for every viewer, and we know consumers have a lot of options and preferences about how they view TV without cable. In order to simplify the viewing process for consumers, we’ve created a product that not only gives open access to OTA content, but also integrates and organizes OTT streaming video through a seamless all-in-one interface.

“We are at the crest of the cord cutting revolution,” Buff says. “Pay TV is broken. AirWave is our attempt to reinvent the TV viewing experience by offering consumers flexibility, convenience, and choice. With Free TV Everywhere, you can watch what you want, how you want, and with no monthly fees.”

The antenna is very reasonably priced at $150, and will be available in the second quarter at Best Buy stores.

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