Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Downtown Toronto • Toshiba 52XL177 • HD DVD Toshiba • Rogers HDPVR Cisco 8642
I happen to have Akimbo (aka broadbandtv.com). The STB was CAN$300 from the Vancouver office. Monthly subscription fee is US$9.99 and covers a modest amount of "free" programming. (There is also an option for a lifetime programming fee of US$179.) Many programs are $1 to $5; they reside on the unit's hard drive typically for a 30 day license window.
The rub is that most of the interesting content is locked out for Canadian subscribers. This includes: A&E, Adult Swim, Animal Planet, BBC, Cartoon Network, CNN, Discovery Networks, DIY Network, Fine Living, Food Network, Granada TV, GreenCine, HGTV, History Channel, Military Channel, Stage One, Tennis Channel, TLC, Travel Channel, Turner Classic Movies and Wheels TV.
You'll recognize a lot of the names as have license arrangements with cable and satellite companies here. There is no easy fix to that.
The picture quality leaves something to be desired -- it's not bad but it is not as sharp as regular SD on cable. There is no HD content.
You can also chew up a lot of bandwidth getting programming and if you use an Internet provider that sets download limits you might run into prolems if you are a heavy user.
But it's also kinda cool, too. You can browse the net from the office and programming is downloaded to your STB automatically.
Basically this is release 0.3. A good idea; a working proof of concept; a work in progress. It's a much better deal in the US because of all the extra content.