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Slingbox takes TV a go-go

Sling Media made good on a promise to launch its Slingbox digital storage device this week.

First seen at the Consumer Electronics Show back in January, the silver box that resembles a candy bar hooks up to your television and redirects, or "placeshifts", a single live TV stream from a cable box, satellite receiver, or digital video recorder and blasts it out to a Windows XP-based PC located anywhere in the home.

Sling Media's Slingbox
Credit: Sling Media

If the Slingbox is coupled with a broadband Internet connection, the company claims the viewer's live TV stream can be "placeshifted" via the Internet to a PC located anywhere in the world.

BestBuy and CompUSA are selling these things for $249.99 with no monthly service fee involved.

The box is winning all sorts of accolades from publications like Fortune Magazine, Laptop Magazine and RetailVision. CNET even declared the device as the "Next Big Thing" in the "accessories" class.

CNET's Brian Cooley did a fine job showing it off during the CES show (streaming video)

In the coming months, Sling Media said the SlingPlayer software will be available for select number of PDAs and smart phones. The company is also coming out with a Macintosh-compatible version.

San Mateo, Calif.-based Sling Media and Texas Instruments, which makes the processor inside the Slingbox, are apparently now working together on a Slingbox Personal Broadcaster.