HTC Media Link review:

HTC Media Link

Typical Price: £90.00
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2 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Works seamlessly with HTC phones; Cheaper than most video streamers.

The Bad Doesn't support some common video formats; Slow to transfer files; Fewer features than most video streamers.

The Bottom Line The HTC Media Link makes it easy-peasy to beam your HTC phone's media to your telly over its Wi-Fi hotspot, but it's got nothing on a proper media streamer if you want to do much more.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

4.5 Overall

The HTC Media Link is a little dongle that adds DLNA support to your telly, which means you can stream media from your HTC mobile phone straight to the big screen. You can also connect it to your home network to wirelessly stream stuff from your Windows 7 computer to your TV, while using your phone as the remote control.

You can pick up the Media Link for £90, and HTC will throw in an HDMI cable -- which is handy, because the gadget has a tiny micro-HDMI port which requires a special cable.

Size does matter

The Media Link is insanely tiny -- barely bigger than a box of tic-tacs. Unfortunately, once you add a huge power adaptor, which is larger than the device itself, and two big cables, the Media Link is left flopping around like a minnow on a fishing line.

We hate to complain about something being too small, but the stiff cables and light weight kept the Media Link from sitting comfortably on any flat surface, and we had to wedge it in beside our set-top box lest it slip into the bottomless pit of cable spaghetti behind the TV.

The Media Link is so small it's at the mercy of its power adaptor and cables.

DLNA story 

You've got two options with the Media Link -- using as a wireless hotspot, or connecting it to your home network.

To keep things simple, use it as a wireless hotspot. Plug it in, connect it to your telly's HDMI port, and fire it up. It creates its own bubble of Wi-Fi, so you can connect to it using the Connected Media app on your HTC phone. Then you're laughing -- photos, music and video are beamed over to the big screen with no fuss.

This set-up took us less than 5 minutes to sort out, which is pretty unheard of for media equipment, and half of that was figuring out what all the buttons on our TV remote do.

We did have some trouble with unsupported video, however. Two of our films in AVI format just wouldn't play through the Media Link, despite showing fine on the HTC Desire HD we were testing it with. This was a punch below the belt -- it's enough of a pain in the leg to sort out what videos will play on the phone, without having to worry about the media streamer too.

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