MediaMall Technologies, the company behind our favorite PlayOn and PlayOn Cloud products has recently released Roku channels to allow program viewing on your television screen. Lean-back viewing has been the big missing piece for PlayOn, and this finally fills that gap. The new PlayOn Cloud channel lets you watch the shows that you’ve recorded on your PlayOn Cloud account, including automatic commercial skipping. The oddly-named PlayOn Desktop channel (considering it’s an app on a streaming device), lets you watch streaming video from any configured source via PlayOn Desktop, assuming that’s running on a PC somewhere on your home network.
The fact that there are two separate channels just further reinforces the odd separation between these two services. We’ve always found it strange that PlayOn Cloud is so clearly separate from the PlayOn Desktop. Why aren’t these two products more closely integrated? And, perhaps more importantly, why aren’t they at least integrated into the same front-end experience, where the app sees your cloud and/or desktop services and just lets you select between them?
We’ve always been fans of the PlayOn service, and we’re glad to see it finally hit the (at-home) big screen, but the release of two separate apps just further reinforces this service as a hardcore geek offering. And maybe that’s where they want to be, because…we’re still scratching our heads, trying to figure out how this is all legal.