Verismo PoD: $99 box provides access to 150 million online videos
by Brad Linder, posted Jun 4th 2008 6:11PM
While there's no shortage of set top boxes that bridge the gap between the PC and the TV, the Verismo PoD ignores the gap altogether. This tiny box plugs into any TV with an HDMI or S-Video port and provides access to over 150 million online videos. No computer necesssary (although you will need a broadband internet connection, and if you already have one of those, I'm guessing you've got a computer somewhere in the house).
Verismo is currently beta testing the set top box, but plans to begin selling the PoD later this summer for $99. I'm assuming you'll be able to find more content on the company's web page by then. NewTeeVee's Liz Gannes caught up with the company recently and interviewed company co-founder Vijay Maheshwari on video.
The PoD connects directly to a handful of internet video sites including YouTube and video search engine vTap. Verismo has also partnered with BitTorrent to provide access to legal BitTorrent videos. The are USB ports in the back of the hand-sized box, which allow you to add a WiFi dongle or extra storage. The PoD software can handle Windows Media DRM, which means you can purchase and watch video from web stores like Amazon Unbox or CinemaNow.
The user interface looks usable, but sparse. It reminds me of the Neuros OSD or Apple TV interface. Maybe that's just because of the black background. In addition to the usual fast forward, pause, and rewind features, there's a zoom button on the remote for watching web videos in full screen or smaller sizes. There's also support for some keyboards, including the Logitech DiNovo.