From YouTube to Vimeo, there's no shortage of video content available on the Internet. And while Smart TVs and set-top boxes have made streaming online video into the living room easier than ever, many people still have no idea how to beam content to their TV from their existing laptops, tablets and smartphones. PLAiR is a elegant micro-computer that lets users wirelessly transmit HD online videos directly to any HDMI-equipped display or projector, without any frustration.
There are two main reasons why you should care about PLAiR: 1) set-up appears to be really simple, and 2) it's platform agnostic, so it doesn't matter if you're a Windows or Mac fanboy.
As you can see in the company's video below, setting PLAiR is easy enough that it should pass the "mom test," assuming she isn't a Luddite. Once PLAiR is plugged into a TV (or projector), jacked into a power source, and connected to Wi-Fi, the only thing left to do is download and install a Chrome extension or the free Android (2.3 Gingerbread or higher) or iOS app (iOS 5 or higher). From there, beaming online videos from a computer to the big screen is a matter of just clicking on a "beam logo" that appears in the upper right corner of any online video.
It sounds too easy, right? Well, that's the point, to be as hassle-free as possible. PLAiR co-founder Saad Hussain says the company's goal is kill the HDMI cable tethering between a laptop and TV and get those people to go wireless.
Because PLAiR supports HTML 5 and Flash-based videos, virtually any online video that plays on your computer should beam fine. It also helps that PLAiR's partnered with a ton of content providers.
PLAiR begins shipping today in black, blue and red for $99 directly from the company's store, but will be available at retail "soon."