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CNET First Look
2Wire MediaPoint Digital Media PlayerBlockbuster's set-top box delivers movies to your TV via the Internet, but it's limited by a small selection and subpar interface.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:02 >> Hi, I'm John Falcone from CNET.com and this is the 2Wire MediaPoint Digital Media Player with Blockbuster OnDemand. It's a set top box that lets you watch OnDemand videos delivered to your TV from the Internet via your wired or wireless home network. While that's nothing new, the Blockbuster Box does have some interesting advantages versus the competition. Titles can be searched and ordered on screen, so there's need to use your computer once you've created your account. Also progressive downloading allows for movies to be downloaded first and viewed later which is helpful for anyone with a slower broadband connection. Unlike competing units from Netflix, there are not monthly fees. You pay only for the movies you actually watch. In fact, the Blockbuster Box is basically free. The $99 price tag you pay includes a credit for 25 movies. While the streaming performance and video quality was good, we weren't thrilled with this product. The interface is slow and not terribly user-friendly. The remote is tiny and cluttered with too many buttons. And while there is generally newer video content compared with Netflix, it's a far smaller library overall, under 2,000 movies so far with none in high-def. The box itself is very tiny, not larger than a Mac mini and it has all the connections on the back that you need to connect to any TV via an older analog model or a high-def TV with an HDMI input. You can connect to your network with the built-in Ethernet or wireless Wi-Fi connection that's built-in to the box. And unlike Netflix, there aren't a lot of good TV shows to choose from. Also the built-in Wi-Fi doesn't work with the latest WPA2 encryption. In the meantime, there's no reason to rush out and buy the 2Wire MediaPoint Digital Media Player with Blockbuster OnDemand. I'm John Falcone for CNET. ^M00:01:58 [ Music ]