im.Play: Watch iPhone/iPad on LCD without strings
With multiple devices media management is a cumbersome job. Music in its mp3 format is still easy to manage. The same file and the same format can be played in multiple music players. Management of videos can be a tough job.. With multiple devices the job becomes even tougher syncing videos between the iPhone, the computer and the LCD screen.
Suppose you want to play your favorite movie or song, the process is lengthy and cumbersome. You download the song or movie, then you convert it to the right format. To transfer it into your iPhone you also need to convert it to its size. In other words it's a problem of multiple formats, multiple sizes and more. To add to the problem what is converted in iPhone size if you play it in iPad or a large screen it will pixelate or the picture goes hazy and dull.
In other words it would make life easier if one could stream the video content from the iPhone/iPad onto the TV screen without the compromise on picture quality. I recently discovered one such product called im.Play.
im.Play - Wireless streaming of iPhone/iPad Content to TV Screen
im.Play is a small matchbox size wireless video streamer that can be attached to your iPhone or iPad. The video you play on your iPhone or iPad can be streamed wirelessly onto the LCD or any screen for that matter. What makes this device interesting is that the video you stream onto the LCD screen is in its original format and not the compressed one you made for iPhone or iPad.
Apple is known for its design yet the ancillary industry around it in form of docks and much more misses this point. Thankfully this product doesn't let you down in terms of design. The aesthetics are appealing overall. The size of the transmitter is about the size of a match box and the weight is less than 80 gms. The receiver looks like a small dock.
Setting it up
The entire setup is an easy 2 minute job. There are no apps to be downloaded or any software to be loaded. The transmitter to be attached to the iPad or iPhone is simple plug and plug.
At a MRP of Rs.10,000 one certainly wishes this was cheaper. Having already spent a grand amount on the Apple products one certainly wishes this was priced cheaper. The manufacturers need to keep in mind, this is a value add on to an existing product. Price plays an important role. A reasonable price encourages a consumer to build an infrastructure around the existing product.
The transmission is clear and the quality of picture is good. Getting the transmission channel right is simple. The couple of videos I played it was hard to differentiate between the original and the ones I played from the iPhone.
Convenience wise this is great simple because your iPhone or your iPad can become a central hub for all the video content, all the music content, all the corporate presentations. You don't need to manage multiple formats or sizes. Even the music can directly be streamed to the home theatre from the iPhone.
The Last Word
Apple is a brand that is almost worshipped and its users buy products to build around their iPods/iPhones. The iPod docks are a case in point. Overall im.Play is an interesting device for those interested in making their iPhone/iPad a central hub for their video or music content for streaming on the TV screen. A cheaper pricing would certainly be better.
Puneet Mehrotra is a columnist on Business and Technology