The company produces a line of Slingbox set-top boxes ($179 -$349) that connect with your cable or satellite TV service provider to stream that content over the internet, thus making it available across multiple platforms — including Facebook via the new Slingplayer app.
Sling Media has already made the Slingplayer available on Android, iOS, a Windows desktop app, a Mac OS X app and via the company’s website. With that in mind, it’s kind of strange that the company decided to spend resources on a Facebook version when users can already access content from their Slingbox just about anywhere.
However, there is something to be said for the promotional value associated with Facebook’s over 800 million active users. There’s also the benefit of by-passing restricted networks, such as those found at work and school (provided Facebook isn’t also on that network’s list of restricted sites).
The new Facebook app will only work for customers who have a Pro-HD or SOLO Slingbox unit that has been updated with the latest firmware. Yet, even if you can access the Slingplayer on Facebook, you probably won’t be that impressed. Right now, the only benefit for watching your content through the app instead of one of the other methods is that you can post TV-related status updates via Facebook.
The Slingbox and Slingplayer faces indirect competition from Boxee, Roku and a number of other set-top streaming media solutions.