Pioneer Phones Home with new ETAP Networking Product
- Product Name: ET
- Manufacturer: Pioneer
- Review Date: September 21, 2009 15:43
- MSRP: $1500-$2k
- First Impression: Gotta Have It!
Pioneers new magic ET box they demoed at CEDIA was out of this world. Its focus is downloading, streaming and storage of personal media with a home theater approach to delivering networked media in the living room. Think of it as a Media PC without the PC.
The network entertainment concept player, code named "Project ET," encompasses high quality audio and video playback, Internet access and home theater control capabilities all within a single set-top device. Pioneer® differentiates its technology concept from existing players in the market by letting consumers combine their personal music, movies and photo collections with access to a choice of online content services, social networking applications and online purchasing sites. Pioneer’s concept incorporates the convenience of a unified remote control which users can also use to easily add and remove services based on their entertainment needs and preferences.
“For years Pioneer has developed products with its exclusive Home Media Gallery function that networks DLNA-compliant products within the home theater. Now that broadband speeds have increased to a level that lets users access high definition quality content from the Internet, we are able to consider a network platform like Project ET, which is based on a unique home theater approach to delivering networked content and services into the living room,” said Russ Johnston, executive vice president for home entertainment business solutions group at Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc.
Emerging Internet Content at Your Fingertips
Pioneer’s concept lets consumers download and stream music, video and photos directly from a networked PC to a home theater for viewing on a large screen television. With the opportunity to directly access new, unique content from multiple free and paid online content providers, including YouTube, Netflix and Picasa among many others, Project ET provides a new means for users to seek and enjoy new entertainment.
While retailers may be able to configure a Project ET device for out-of-the box access to specific applications and services, consumers could further customize the device with preferred applications for music and movie streaming, photo storage and playback, as well as additional control capabilities. Pioneer has developed a dedicated web portal for Project ET owners to easily add and remove content services with a simple click of a button. Project ET incorporates its proprietary video processing technologies that ensure pristine playback of high definition as well as lower resolution content.
Pioneer is demonstrated the network concept with one terabyte of hard disk drive storage space for uncompressed and compressed audio file storage and playback. The device is Ethernet-equipped and has built-in WiFi to maximize connectivity. At CEDIA, the Project ET device will include a built-in internal Blu-ray Disc®/DVD/CD player.
Living Room Control Capabilities Enhance User Experiences
Primarily envisioned as an entertainment network device, Project ET also provides a host of custom installation tools with built-in Control4 IQ technology. A Zigbee 2-Way remote control and high definition graphic user interface allows end users to intuitively navigate their stored digital content or online media while simultaneously controlling home theater room lighting, temperature and other connected home automated products.
Some of the features demoed at CEDIA 2009 include:
- Twitter Updates: With real-time updates to one’s Twitter messaging service, Project ET can “tweet” whatever entertainment content you are enjoying to followers with a hot-link to the movie title or music album
- Buy It Now Button: Allows Twitter followers as well as Project ET users to directly purchase physical or digital copies of content based on the current media being played. This includes Blu-ray discs as well. The player can make an exact copy of content managed Blu-ray content with the default sound track.
- Mobile Device Streaming: Provides users with remote access to local content from the home theater system and stream it to WiFi-connected portable devices or PC, anywhere and anytime. The technology also place-shifts content, and it centralizes control of home theater components and home systems within a home theater room
- iPhone Compatibility: Utilizing Wi-Fi, Project ET users can navigate, control and playback digital media as well as home all home theater operations with an iPhone/iPod
I’ll take two of these today! It was amazing to see all of the network streaming capabilities this machine has to offer without the shackles and hassles of a multi media PC. The ability to copy what they refer to as “content managed Blu-ray discs” is pretty awesome. The Pioneer reps also talked about the ability of stacking up to 14 hard drives for an almost limitless data storage and streaming solution. The ETAP comes stock with an internal 1TB HD so you're ready to go right out of the box. During the demo, we watched Blu-ray discs streamed to a cell phone which was icing on this dream cake we are all wanting to take a bite from. Best of all, it seems the retail price is targeted to be less than their flagship Blu-ray player (around $1500-$2k). Availability is uncertain, but you can expect consumers lining up to the door when they start shipping.
For more info, visit: Pioneer Electronics
Movies streamed to an iPhone? That's like a flashback to the Sony Watchman. Why do people want to watch little, tiny movies? Pioneer just pulled out of most consumer electronics- I wish they would make up their minds. I also wish they would make their Kuro plasma TVs again.
I agree, if you're home already, what's the point? I think they are just doing it b/c they can. I am more interested in copying blu-ray discs but I don't know of any "content managed" discs that hit the market yet and there will be a fee to do this which again raises the question "what's the point"?
I suppose we shall see.
Pioneers new magic "ET" box they demoed at CEDIA was out of this world. Pioneer's ETAP focus is downloading, streaming and storage of personal media with a home theater approach to delivering networked media in the living room. Think Media PC without the PC. The ability to copy what they refer to as content managed Blu-ray discs is pretty awesome. The Pioneer reps also talked about the ability of stacking up to 14 hard drives for an almost limitless data storage and streaming solution. During the demo, we watched Blu-ray discs streamed to an iPhone which was icing on this dream cake we are all wanting to take a bite from. Best of all, it seems the retail price is targeted to be less than their flagship Blu-ray player (around $1500-$2k). Availability is uncertain, but you can expect consumers lining up to the door when they start shipping.
Discuss "Pioneer Phones Home with new ETAP Networking Product" here. Read the article [audioholics.com].
I didn't read anything about the Hollywood Studios being on board with this. Until I hear that, I don't think this product will make it to the market.
I just want one, central "pool" of content, and then I want to be able to watch/listen to that content on any screen in my home as well as on my laptop over WiFi and on my iPhone over 3G/4G (once 4G arrives, obviously )
I don't care whether my content is CD, DVD, Blu-ray disc, downloaded files, recorded OTA television, recorded cable/satellite television or streaming internet content - I just want to put it ALL in one, central "pool" and then be able to watch any of it on any screen, but also be able to simultaneously watch different content on all screens or simultaneously watch the same content on all screens with independant control at each screen!
So far, what seems to make the most sense is a Home Media Server with a HTPC at each display, but I would love a more elegant solution. A Windows Media Center + extenders doesn't really cut it for a couple of reasons:
1) getting cable/satellite recordings into Media Center is a bit of a pain. It can be done with the Hauppauge HD-PVR and some file conversion, but it's a hassle.
2) There is really no way at all to get full quality TrueHD/DTS-HD MA from Blu-ray discs that have been ripped to the hard drive. The extenders just don't handle the lossless audio codecs.
I really hate how restricted we are. To be honest, what I really, really want most of all is to completely do away with having to store any content in my home. I just want to pay a monthly fee and then literally have access to ANY and ALL content in the highest quality possible at the push of a button