Friday, April 13, 2007

Joost Rocks!

I was given the opportunity to beta test an exciting new program called Joost. If you haven't heard, Joost allows you to watch TV on your computer with the content streamed over the internet. Joost is available for Windows and Mac OS X. It is made by the creators of Skype and Kazaa (right away you know that it involves peer-to-peer technology). While it is still in the beta stages of development, Joost is fun to use, shows a lot of promise, and may revolutionize the way you watch TV.

Joost is a free service that allows you to watch many different high-quality programs without having to follow a TV schedule. You can pick from a number of channels, and skip through individual programs within each channel. My favorite channel on Joost is called "Fifth Gear," which features reviews of high-performance cars. Some channels are limited by geographic location.

There is a My Joost area where you can chat with other users who may be watching the same channel. You can also load widgets such as RSS news readers. My Joost is customizable and allows you to move stuff around and modify it very easily.

I did experience occasional stuttering while watching programs in Joost, as well as an occasional error message saying that I was disconnected from Joost. This is to be expected, of course, as the software is still in the development and testing phase. Overall performance seemed to be smoother the longer I had Joost open. Since I first installed Joost, there has already been an update. The Joost developers seem very active and there is a user forum on Joost's website for users to post and share information.

Joost is just what I've been waiting for. I spend very little time watching television because there just isn't that much content that I actually want to spend my time watching. Even if there is something worth watching, I have to adjust my schedule around the program, and sit through commercials. Joost allows you to go straight to the program you're looking for and watch it when you want to watch it. There are advertisements that are displayed occasionally between programs, but the only ones I've seen are short, approximately 5-second, still images for advertisers such as Garnier hair products and Eclipse chewing gum.

Viacom (including CBS) has licensed some of its content to Joost including programming from MTV Networks, BET Networks, and Paramount Pictures. While Joost will still have some hurdles to overcome before it goes mainstream (such as occasional stalls and adding more content), it will no doubt change internet TV. Since it is still in the beta stage of development and testing, Joost is currently only available by invitation.

(Sources: Joost, Wikipedia)

1 comment:

  1. Hey Brian, this looks awesome! Do you have an invitation you can send me for the Beta?