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#1
Old 11-08-2015, 07:22 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,652
RboxTV: streaming TV service. Legal? Good?

(Mods: I considered putting this in CS also. Please move there if you think that's where it should be.)

I just saw something at an exhibition called RBoxTV. It's a streaming service for your TV.

Do you remember an old TV commercial where a guy in a ragged suit is checking in to a dusty motel in the desert somewhere. He asks the young woman at the counter, "Do the rooms have entertainment?" She replies something like, "every room has every movie ever made in every language available any time, day or night." He replies "how is that possible?"

That seems to be what RBoxTV bills itself as. They said anything you want to see is available. In the demo I asked to see the current episodes of iZombie, and the most current was there. I also asked to see "The Martian", which is currently still playing in theaters, and it also was available!

So for a mere $290, I could watch any TV show or Movie without ever having to pay a cable or satellite bill again.

So, how can this be legal? Does anyone actually have an RBoxTV? How does it work for you?

RboxTV says the shows are "Streamed Through Google. Operated by Android". Is this a legitimate reference, or are they just saying this to make you think it is legal?

Is this another peer-to-peer streaming service like Napster, soon to go the same way? Is it different in some way that won't have the same fate as Napster?


Thanks in advance,
J.
#2
Old 11-08-2015, 09:43 PM
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Posts: 6,260
I've never heard of these people. The Google results are ... weird. I think it's a offbrand tv box like Roku or AppleTV, built on a generic Android wifi-enabled device. I'd give it a pass.

If you want a device to put internet content on your TV, however, you should get a Roku or a Kindle FireTV. You can get both of those devices for around $50-$100, depending on the model. AppleTV is also a good choice, especially if you buy a lot of content through iTunes, but it's more expensive (and has fewer channels).

We have a Roku, and we get a lot of use from it. Keep in mind, that some of the content will charge rental fees and some won't. For example, we pay $50 a year to subscribe to Acorn TV, which shows BBC material. There's also a free BBC channel, but it has fewer shows. The Amazon Prime Instant video app has both free and rental movies (and purchases, too) but you need an Amazon Prime subscription. And so on. Before you buy a streaming system, make sure you check the price and availability of the shows for which you're looking.


Linkage -

Rokus:

http://amazon.com/Roku-Streaming...&keywords=roku

http://amazon.com/Roku-3500R-Str...&keywords=roku


Amazon FireTV

http://amazon.com/gp/product/B00..._rd_i=13447451

http://amazon.com/dp/B00GDQ0RMG/..._ods_fs_smp_mv


AppleTV
http://apple.com/tv/

Last edited by Merneith; 11-08-2015 at 09:47 PM.
#3
Old 11-08-2015, 09:48 PM
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To answer your other question - streaming internet tv is legal, but not really free. It's very much here to stay. In another fifty years, the TV scene will look more like streaming tv on the Roku than the old broadcast/cable paradigm.

Last edited by Merneith; 11-08-2015 at 09:49 PM.
#4
Old 11-09-2015, 07:49 AM
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I asked about a similar box, The big difference between it and RuKu/Google TV/ Apple TV ect. appears that the known commercial products seem gets legit content from trusted companies who have proper licencing agreements. This unit seems to allow streaming regardless of if the site is knowing to be streaming legit content, which will allow more content available.

I believe the principal to their legal status, is they are selling a device that in and of itself is legal, it is similar to a table to that respect, basically it does sound like at it's heart it is a tablet 'computer' with HDMI output in a box and a custom search interface to find the streaming movies, What you chose to do with it is up to you and your responsibility as they can not control that.

Last edited by kanicbird; 11-09-2015 at 07:50 AM.
#5
Old 11-09-2015, 02:42 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,652
Quote:
Originally Posted by kanicbird View Post
I asked about a similar box, The big difference between it and RuKu/Google TV/ Apple TV ect. appears that the known commercial products seem gets legit content from trusted companies who have proper licencing agreements. This unit seems to allow streaming regardless of if the site is knowing to be streaming legit content, which will allow more content available.

I believe the principal to their legal status, is they are selling a device that in and of itself is legal, it is similar to a table to that respect, basically it does sound like at it's heart it is a tablet 'computer' with HDMI output in a box and a custom search interface to find the streaming movies, What you chose to do with it is up to you and your responsibility as they can not control that.
So if I use an RboxTV is somebody going to come after me in the future demanding that I pay them royalty fees (like Napster customers did)?

J.
#6
Old 11-09-2015, 03:59 PM
Just Lovely and Delicious
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Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 23,721
If it sounds to good to be true, it is. If it were legal, easy and cheap for a service to provide a stream of every tv show and movie ever (even the ones still in the theaters! (as per their website)) then why would Netflix, Amazon, Apple and Google be busting their asses to get licenses for content and having exclusive content is a major coup?

Here's what I am guessing this box is...It's a little computer that supports various streaming video models like Flash, HTML5 and Silverlite. Their search engine hits up a list of illegal streaming sites as well as YouTube to find your content. What you end up with are illegal streams, most likely poor quality. Video-of-screen, over-dubbed in non-English, flipped, cropped, etc versions of movies and shows. The stream sites will go down every so often, and YouTube will remove content, and you'll lose that huge cache of whatever show from your childhood you'd been meaning to watch eventually.

They might do updates to your device every so often to clean up the dead stream sites and add more. That would be nice. If they don't, you'll probably lose a ton of access to content in a year or so.

Anyway, you might get nicked for streaming illegal content. All the box is doing is allowing you do play the same stuff from your browser on your tv, so the connecting IP address is yours. They just provide the search, or rather access to Google via your tv. But you probably won't - you're pretty far down the food chain.

What is more of a risk is spending this $290 and you end up with shit content. And you will end up with shit content. By the time the fun wears off (because you will get a couple good hits and good-looking movies in the first few months before sources get shut down) you will absolutely not be able to get a refund.

Just like you shouldn't be swayed by any digital media streaming site online that asks for some money and promises the world (or doesn't ask for money, but promises you the world - if you just download this virus), don't be swayed by a box that promises to do the same.
#7
Old 11-09-2015, 05:08 PM
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Location: Barrie, Ontario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharvey963 View Post
So if I use an RboxTV is somebody going to come after me in the future demanding that I pay them royalty fees (like Napster customers did)?

J.
No

Your getting unauthorized access to content, not legal, but nothing the cops are going to bother you about. The streamers on the other hand, are the ones that are gonna have doors kicked in, if they were not in countrys that dont really care about this sort of thing.

Thats the one thing I noticed with those android boxes, what you get is here and now, and not reliable like turning on your cable. One day you have a feed, and the next its down.

Declan
#8
Old 11-09-2015, 05:12 PM
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Location: Barrie, Ontario
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharvey963 View Post
RboxTV says the shows are "Streamed Through Google. Operated by Android". Is this a legitimate reference, or are they just saying this to make you think it is legal?
J.
Just noticed this

Its complete horseshit. Android is Googles OS, thats legit. It runs Kodi, and thats legit, but no way is google streaming movies from other vendors and no that part about being legal is completely false representation.

Declan
#9
Old 11-10-2015, 10:32 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,652
I emailed to RboxTV and asked how their system can be legal. Below is the email thread with names obscured (read it from bottom to top).

Comments?
J.



------------------------------------------------------------
XXXXXXX <YYY YYY [email protected]> Today at 7:03 AM
To
JJJJJJJJJJJJ

Movies in theaters are whats called play streams.. Meaning in that section there is no torrents or downloads available so there fore no licensing needed for those

-------------------------------------------------------------
On Nov 10, 2015 10:01 AM, "JJJJJJJJJJJ" <[email protected]> wrote:
So, you have proper licensing to streams that can play movies that are currently in the theaters? How does that work? Have you made agreements with the movie studios?

Thanks,
JJJJJJJJJ

--------------------------------------------------------------
From: XXXXXXXX <YYY YYY [email protected]>
To: [email protected]
Sent: Tuesday, November 10, 2015 4:10 AM
Subject: Rboxtv

Because we have a system that can not watch any type of illegal stream... No downloads, no torrents, and all streams will have proper licensing behind it

----------------------------------------------------------------
From: [email protected]
To: [email protected] YYY YYY Y.com

Your RboxTV provides streams of all past and current TV shows, and all movies, even ones currently in the theater. How is this legal?
#10
Old 11-10-2015, 01:56 PM
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Join Date: May 1999
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharvey963 View Post
I emailed to RboxTV and asked how their system can be legal. Below is the email thread with names obscured (read it from bottom to top).

Comments?
J.

Makes perfect sense now.
#11
Old 11-11-2015, 12:28 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
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Posts: 483
One of these sorts of deals was closed down in the UK last summer. [Link]

Quote:
‘Pirate’ Android TV Box Sellers Raided By Police

By Andy on June 12, 2015

Sellers of Android boxes loaded with software enabling the free viewing of movies, TV shows and live sports have been raided this week by UK authorities. Trading Standards officers, police and representatives from Sky TV carried out raids in several locations, causing other sellers to quickly reconsider the tone of their marketing efforts.

<Snip>

While selling any of the above devices alone is entirely legal, over the past couple of years online markets such as eBay and Amazon have been flooded with “fully loaded” boxes (Android-based in particular) that enable free viewing of anything from first run movies to live sports.

Surprisingly, many vendors have been happy to publicly advertise that fact, with many apparently under the impression that if they don’t provide the illegal content themselves then they aren’t liable. In the UK that argument is unlikely to fly and during the past week patience appears to have run out.
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