Almost every day a new device hits the market, enabling more Internet content to be viewed on a TV. BluRay players (LG-BD370/390, Sony BDP-N460) that also stream Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Videos. Netflix-only solution Roku now supports MLB.TV. Media PC/Set-top box/DVD players continue to evolve and overlap. The Myka ION HD player supports Hulu and Boxee with BluRay as an add-on option. And the ultimate convergence Internet@TV from Samsung.
What all of these solutions still lack is a solution to Surf and Search.
When you are looking for a video – either something specific or something in a category, or just serendipitously browsing, you need a keyboard and a private screen. Private because no one wants to watch your surfing – and you may find something you want a glimpse of that you don’t really want to share with the room.
I would bet that many folks with Internet-connected TVs still use laptops or “app phones” to find content privately, then share it on the big screen with family and friends. The New York Times reported that streaming Netflix users complain about having to use their laptops to manage the queue they watch on TV.
There are solutions that move in this direction. Gmote for Android for. MythTV for Linux. These solutions use VNC to direct the screen output of an Internet-enabled component to the display of a laptop/app-phone. This is the technology behind remote display control for IT Tech support and web conferencing such as GoToMYPC. But VNC isn’t optimized for controlling for an Internet-enabled video component, especially in a home WiFi environment where bandwidth is critical. Perhaps Clicker Media will have the solution we seek.