Top positive review
90 people found this helpful
on 25 November 2013
About this review, note that I work in the consumer-electronics industry. I take part in the development of products similar to the WD Play. These products do not compete with the WD Play, so please consider my review to be unbiased and based on a modicum of knowledge for such products.
To summarise: I think it is an excellent product and beats others I have tried (many, including Boxee box and AppleTV). It is far superior to the so-called smart TV functionality integrated by the likes of Samsung, LG, Sony, Philips etc.
Positive points in my experience:
> Small and compact.
> Does not get hot in normal operation. This is a modern device using a power-efficient chip dedicated for such products.
> Responsive user interface. It is also uncluttered and devoid of any adverts for sponsored content. It can also be tailored (in terms of displayed apps and background image).
> Control via iOS/other app is possible.
> Some useful apps available, e.g. iPlayer, Netflix, Spotify, TuneIn, Shoutcast, Slingplayer, AceTrax, YouTube, Flickr, FaceBook, Twitter.
> Set up is easy.
> uPnP works very well (in terms of content compatibility and trick modes).
> Output of digital audio over HDMI or SPDIF.
> Hasn't yet crashed!
> Is able to play uncompressed AIFF (inc. 24-bit/96KHz) audio files and Apple lossless audio files.
> Boot time from standby is very fast.
> There are two buttons on the RCU that can be configured to perform desired functions, e.g. go straight to BBC iPlayer.
> Like many other devices it doesn't let go of the HDMI connection when switching into standby, which means that it can fool HDMI switches that can autoswitch into thinking it is still on. This means that the HDMI autoswitch does not switch to other devices that happen to be on (as it should).
> Would like 4oD and Demand5 apps to be available.
To summarise, this is a fine product, and the asking price of £40 makes it truly excellent value.