Samsung makes Smart move with Boxee buyout

Samsung has acquired Israel-based start-up firm Boxee in a move that would likely make it a big challenge to Apple and Google in the next wave of entertainment that marries conventional TV sets with on-demand video via Internet.

Boxee offers streaming media content such as live TV, cloud-based videos-on-demand and internet applications through its set top boxes — branded as Boxee TV.

The buyout gives Samsung ownership rights to jazz up the humble Boxee TV and stay ahead in a highly-competitive smart TV market in which software and design to match Apple and Google are critical. Though ailing somewhat as a small startup, Boxee packs a talented team and a cutting-edge product that could help Samsung move up in the game.

Boxee TV is essentially a set-top-box that merges live TV broadcast, a cloud-based digital-video-on-demand service and Internet applications in a single device.

Boxee had recently announced that its new Boxee TV would be available from November this year for $99 (R5,940).

Cloud-based video-on-demand means that videos will get uploaded on Boxee’s servers instead of getting stored on the local hard drive of the device, thus giving users flexibility to access these content anytime, from anywhere.

“We’re pleased to announce that the Boxee team will be joining Samsung,” Boxee wrote on its website conforming the deal.

“The deal will help us continue to improve the overall user experience,” tech website Mashable quoted a Samsung representative. Mashable quoted a few Israeli publications saying the deal could be worth $30 million (Rs 182 crore).

Q2 forecast disappoints

Seoul: Samsung fuelled concerns about flagging demand for high-end smartphones with a weaker-than-expected earnings forecast for the April-June quarter.

The South Korean firm’s operating profit forecast of 9.5 trillion won ($8.3 billion) would be a record, but analysts had expected a figure of more than 10 trillion won.



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