The SlingCatcher is a slight tweak in direction for Sling Media; unlike their SlingBox media streamers, whose purpose is to take what TV content you receive (whether cable, satellite or over-the-air) and funnel it out to you while you travel, the SlingCatcher gobbles up streamed content (from a SlingBox or from any number of online sources) and puts it on your TV. It was announced back at CES 2007, but pre-orders only started back in September. Now the first devices are reaching buyers for some long-awaited unboxing.
It’s proved to be a mixed experience: because since the SlingCatcher is not quite yet released (in Sling Media’s eyes) and as they don’t include in-box software (as it’s invariably out of date by the time it reaches customers and they have to download the new version anyway), there’s no way to get the SlingCatcher Projector software. That won’t be available to download until the official release.
A Sling Media representative has also confirmed that, in the beginning at least, streamed content from the SlingBox PRO-HD – which is capable of sending high-definition 1080i media – will only be shown on the SlingCatcher at 640 x 480. HD catching will have to wait until a future update.