Coming up with new and better ways for you to watch various forms of content on your HDTV is like a sport for the consumer electronics industry. The latest ambitious competitor is Lukup Media, which is previewing its Lukup Player at CES.
The concepts behind the Lukup Player are mixing live and on-demand content from cable, satellite, over-the-air, local, and Internet sources; delivering a personalized and context aware user experience; and offering a multi-screen and place-shifting experience.
Bascially, the Lukup Player is a colorful TV add-on that will sit between your cable or satellite box and your TV. There will also be a model that replaces the set-top decoder you would otherwise use, along with unlimited cloud storage and 128GB of DVR capacity. It collects the programming information from your pay services and Internet content, and displays everything in a single interface. In other words, there's one HDMI input for everything you want to watch.
Users will create profiles that will offer personalized recommendations based on viewing habits, and also let you access some content from your smartphone or tablet remotely (the Player itself isn't a server, so you can't placeshift from your home).
It will offer Wi-Fi, ethernet, and Bluetooth connections, and come with a docking, rechargeable touchscreen remote to find and access your content (you can also use a smartphone as a remote instead). USB and eSata ports will let you add local content into the mix. It will support 1080p video and 5.1-channel audio, and be able to receive and decode multiple streams of content at a time.
The success of this type of product will depend on deals reached with content providers, as well as how well it can effectively replace your other media components and set-top boxes. Which is to say, it has an interesting game plan but victory isn't assured.
Lukup is hoping to ship the non-DVR version of the product in North America in April for $149.