The battle for the living room has never been more intense. With televisions getting smarter, set-top boxes mounting streaming campaigns, and game systems getting truly ambitious, there are a lot of brands out there competing for living room real estate and the viewership of nations. PacketVideo (News - Alert) announced yesterday a partnership with Internet startup and marketing platform ShunCloud to bring something new to living rooms in China.
The PacketVideo / ShunCloud partnership is set to yield a new HDMI dongle for televisions to bring online video and personal media to living rooms all across China, showing that the living room battle is truly a worldwide affair. Users will only need to plug the HDMI dongle into their televisions, which will then give them access to a variety of video sources. It is set to support DLNA, but work specifically with PacketVideo's Twonky Beam browser to get access to those video sources, including major Chinese names like YouKu, 56.com, Sina and several more. But for those who favor their Apple (News - Alert) products, that won't be a problem, as the dongle will include Airplay support, providing access to the wide array of offerings found at iTunes.
PacketVideo is deeply excited about the opportunity, as expressed by its CEO, Jim Brailean, who said, "Twonky Beam will let Chinese users enjoy a true multi-screen web experience enabling them to find their favorite content using their tablet, phone, or PC and play it back on their TV."
ShunCloud's CEO Jianqiang Ren also spoke in favor of the partnership, citing Twonky's "quality and stability" as well as the "growth of smartphones and tablets in China" as reasons to not only bring out the dongle, but also as reasons to do so with PacketVideo.
A living room is a living room, whether its primary video system of choice is Netflix, Lovefilm or YouKu, so it's not surprising that there are enterprising partnerships looking to make their device the device of choice for home entertainment. Indeed, the Chinese market has been adopting smartphones and tablets as its primary source of accessing entertainment and information for some time now, so why not offer a service that lets it use those devices with a larger screen at home? It's interesting that China seems to be going to the streaming video route so rapidly, but then, given the economic and political climate in China, it may well be preferred that the Internet be used as the primary source of entertainment in the country.
Still, with several sources of video to work with, the PacketVideo / ShunCloud dongle should likely be well-received by the Chinese public, and make this partnership a smart idea indeed.
Edited by Brooke Neuman