If you caught my first look at the dual tuner Simple TV, you’ll know that the product fell short of my expectations. A combination of fan issues and software instability led me to question if the dual tuner was actually ready for release. The idea for a networked DVR is sound, but the execution simply failed. In the end, I returned the Simple.TV hoping future updates might resolve the open issues.
Last week, a startup out of Canada entered the same playing field. Tablo TV has made similar promises as Simple TV, an easy way to record Over-The-Air (OTA) TV signals with playback to multiple devices. And the setup is essentially the same for Tablo TV: One part Slingbox, one part DVR. Like rolling your own Aereo with a better UI and higher video quality, without those pesky regional restrictions.
If you are looking to cut your cable/satellite subscriptions and replace with an OTA tuner, you need to give a serious look at Tablo TV. To me, it is the best unit out there in terms of features, cost, and speed. The device over the past week has been rock solid and I’m continually impressed by the speed of the device, especially when streaming to an iPad or Roku. The device is responsive when you need it to be, and otherwise hides in the background waiting for the next command. For my final setup, I moved the Tablo upstairs for the best reception. The Tablo is connected via a powerline adapter back to the router. This gives me the best flexibility to stream OTA and recorded shows anywhere in the house. I have loved using Tablo so far, and I look forward to additional features they may provide in the future!