No, that’s not a redesigned Google Chromecast. That’s Netgear’s latest creation, the NeoMediacast, which is similar to Google’s Chromecast but different in many other ways. Like the Chromecast, the NeoMediacast is a small dongle that’s designed to be plugged into an HDMI port on a television, and it runs some version of Android. That’s pretty much where the similarities end, however, as the NeoMediacast
has a horrible name is really designed to replace a cable box, not to stream videos and music like the Chromecast.
The NeoMediacast won’t be sold directly to consumers. Instead, Netgear plans to sell the device to content providers, who will then load a content store with their own televisions and movies and then sell the device to consumers, who can then purchase videos from the content store. It’s a bit confusing, but it works like a cable box of today works. You’ll buy the dongle from Comcast, and then purchase programming from Comcast’s media store. It looks to be a more a la carte approach to television, which would give consumers more choice over what they’re paying for. There’s always the chance that this could come with the Play Store or another app store, too.
Netgear is trying to turn things around at this year’s CES with the introduction of a wide swath of new pieces of technology and smartphone applications. One of the better product announcements was the company’s new NeoTV with Google TV, an all-in-one set-top box for your living room with all the bells and whistles you’d ever need. Take a look after the break as we go hands-on.
2013 unquestionably seems to be the year of the connected smart home, and NETGEAR is taking full advantage of that today. At its CES 2013 press conference the company announced a slew of additions to its vision of the modern connected home, including the NETGEAR NeoTV Google TV box.
In addition to the new streaming box, NETGEAR has updated its mobile Genie application for Android, offering a brand new feature called TurboTransfer which can be utilized to share files between several desktop and mobile devices across your home network. The company is also introducing the MyMedia mobile application, allowing users to browse and stream digital media from any connected device on your network. If that’s not enough, NETGEAR is also introducing the Powerline Network MAP, a feature that enables you to see the Powerline devices connected to Wi-Fi and then measure the speed across them, and customize various different settings.