NETGEAR has announced three new streaming media players and the first Miracast display adapter.
NETGEAR's new NeoTV streaming players are aggressively priced, with the top-end NeoTV MAX MSRP'd at only $70 and the entry-level NeoTV only $50. Tthe new lineup is aimed squarely at taking share from Roku and other low-cost streaming players like WD's TV Live.
All three models support 1080p HD content via HDMI output and all feature wireless and Ethernet network connectivity. The entry level player supports only single-stream N (AKA "N150"), but the mid and top-level models are "N300") capable. In contrast to the "5 GHz is for media streaming" pitch that its router brethren recite, all the players operate only in the 2.4 GHz band.
NETGEAR NeoTV feature comparison
The NETGEAR rep who gave the press briefing said that price pressures primarily drove the decision, but that the 2.4 GHz band would handle the lower throughput requirements (typically 5 Mbps maximum) of internet-based streaming services.
The new players support new content channels such as Netflix - Just for Kids, Rhapsody, MiaTV and others. NETGEAR said that all players support HTML 5, which will allegedly make adding new channels much easier.
NETGEAR NeoTV models
NETGEAR also announced the PTV3000, the next generation of its Push2TV wireless display adapters. This one is aimed at road warriors, having been shrunk to a size smaller than a pack of playing cards. Like its predecessors, the PTV3000 supports Intel's proprietary WiDi screencasting protocol. But its new trick is support for the Wi-Fi Alliance's Miracast--a rebranding of its potentially-confused-with-Intel-WiDi Wi-Fi Display spec.
NETGEAR PTV3000 Push2TV Wireless Display Adapter
The first certified Miracast products that have emerged from the Alliance's certification program include Samsung Galaxy S3 and LG Optimus G smartphones as well as wireless cards and adapters from Intel, Broadcom, Marvell, MediaTek, Ralink and Realtek. It's interesting to note that the PTV3000 is not Miracast certified.
When asked whether existing Push2TV adapters would receive Miracast upgrades, we were told that it was not possible to do so. The new NeoTV MAX and PRO streamers introduced today will be upgradeable, but aren't slated to get the upgrades until the end of this year.
The PTV3000 also starts shipping this month for $59.99 MSRP.