{ by david linsin }

January 19, 2007


I first heard about Joost, formerly known as "The Venice Project" over at TechCrunch, so I decided to sign up for a beta account for this new "online tv" or "iptv service". Last week I got my account and I checked it out a little bit.

First I needed to sign up on the website and download a client software, which is about 10MB. The installation went smoothly, though it's not really transparent what's going on behind the scenes during the installation process of Joost (version 0.7.3).

After the first startup, it was quite clear that you should have an up-to-date machine to run Joost. I noticed that Joost uses about 90MB of memory, not matter if it's running or idling in the background. It also used about 50% of my CPU power when runing, which in my opinion is definitely too much for a tv software. Keep in mind that these figures are not a thorough analysis or benchmark, it's just what I observed using window's taskmanager on my machine.

The concept and usability of Joost is just awesome! You start the software, punch in your credentials and it'll start running right away. When you move the mouse an overlay menu comes up that let's you flip through a channel list or control the channel you are watching right now. Loading times of channels probably depend on your connection speed, but even with my 200KB/sec connection they are reasonable. I haven't gone through all the features, so there'll be definitely a follow-up post, once I've dug deeper into it.

The content so far is a little boring, there are various channels, even a channel called "Paris Hilton". There are no real movie or tv-show channels, at least I couldn't discover any. But since Joost is in beta, I think they'll add more content step by step. Overall I must say it's a pretty impressive piece of software, considering it's only a 0.7.3 version.

At first I wasn't really excited about the whole iptv concept. In fact I'm still skeptical on how this whole concept is gonna evolve. But with projects like Joost, I think it has a lot of potential to work out quite nicely.



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