Digital Rights Management, or DRM, has always been a tricky topic for media consumption. On the one hand, media companies (like movie studios and television broadcasters) want to ensure they are getting paid for the content they produce and distribute. On the other hand, consumers want to be able to enjoy that content in myriad ways without hassles. Whatever your thoughts are on the matter, it is still a struggle we must work around, and it is a particularly difficult one for many cable TV subscribers. Fortunately, SiliconDust, the company behind HDHomeRun tuners, is removing another DRM obstacle for their users.
To consume cable TV in the United States on anything other than the set-top box
provided leased to you, you’ll need a CableCARD and a tuner that supports it. SiliconDust is the leading producer of CableCARD tuners in the consumer space. Their HDHomeRun Prime devices allow you to watch and record up to three different shows at the same time. Soon they’ll be releasing a device that supports six simultaneous streams. Once you have the tuner and CableCARD in hand you can view the content on a huge number of supported network devices including Windows PCs, iOS and Android mobile devices, and streaming media players. You can also set up DVRs with their own HDHomeRun DVR or through Plex. It all works beautifully as long as your cable provider hasn’t decided to lock down your access through DRM. For the most part, if your cable provider enforced DRM on your stream, Windows Media Center, Windows 10, and the Xbox One were the only devices that could view DRM content. Now SiliconDust has brought that freedom to Android devices!
Now, most Android phones, tablets, and Android TV devices can watch copy-protected (DRM) content through an HDHomeRun Prime tuner. Maybe you’re not one to watch a lot of television on your mobile phone, but this recent update also means that the NVIDIA SHIELD TV box can watch and record copy-protected content. Many people have already switched from using a Windows PC to the NVIDIA SHIELD as the center of their media solution, but up until now, that hasn’t been an option for people whose cable providers locked down most of the shows behind DRM.
If you’ve already got an HDHomeRun Prime and an Android device, the process to get going with DRM is pretty simple. First, you’ll need to update the firmware on your Prime tuner. Simply navigate to my.hdhomerun.com from a computer on the same network as your tuner. From there you’ll find your tuner and can initiate the update process. Then, on any Android device you want to watch from, just update the HDHomeRun app. When you’ve finished updating the app it would be a good idea to reboot it too. That’s all that’s required!
If you act quickly you can even pick up a deal on refurbished HDHomeRun Primes. You can get them straight from SiliconDust for only $99.88 with free shipping in the continental United States. That’s a savings of about $35!
For those of you who have been using this, let us know how it’s working out for you. If you haven’t made the jump to the HDHomeRun Prime or Android devices, has this news swayed your thought process Let us know in the comments below!