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WD Intros New Addition to WD TV Lineup

By - Source: Western Digital | B 11 comments

WD has added another media player in its line of WD TV set-top-boxes that's a bit more personal.

Connected storage provider Western Digital launched a new addition to its WD TV Media Player line of products, the WD TV – Personal Edition. This streaming solution doesn't offer its own internal storage, but instead relies on the user's storage devices like a USB stick, external hard drive or a networked PC. Think of this as an alternative to Roku.

According to the company, the Personal Edition is similar to WD TV Live. That means this version includes Gigabit Ethernet and Wireless N connectivity, full 1080p resolution output, and the ability to play virtually any media file such as MKV, MP4, MPEG-4, FLV and AVI.

However, this model also comes packed with a new "Grid" user interface, allowing users to customize and organize their favorite apps on the home page. Users can also set up quick access to content folders by making shortcuts, and auto-run favorite apps at startup.

In addition to the new interface, the WD TV – Personal Edition includes Miracast, allowing users to wirelessly display their mobile device screen on an HDTV. The device also integrates media ratings from Flixster and RottenTomatoes.

WD's list of highlights shows that the WD TV – Personal Edition is an open platform. The company provides an SDK on the website for "hobbyist's aftermarket custom app development." These developers can run their custom apps straight from USB-based storage.

On the hardware front, the device features a USB 2.0 port on the front and a USB 2.0 port on the back. Also loaded on the back is an HDMI port, a Gigabit Ethernet port, and optical output.

On the software front, users have access to YouTube, Hulu Plus, VUDU, SlingPlayer, Spotify, Pandora, Facebook and more; what you won't find is Netflix and Vimeo. To improve the navigation experience, WD offers the TV Remote app for iOS and Android so that users can turn their mobile device into a remote control for their media player.

WD's new media player costs $99.99 and can be purchased at select U.S. retailers and through WD's online store.

Add your comment Display 11 Comments.
  • 0 Hide
    iknowhowtofixit , May 28, 2014 7:14 PM
    I have 3 Seagate theater+ HD units that just wont die!!! They play practically everything flawlessly. I just wish they had a nicer GUI.
  • 1 Hide
    Dyseman , May 28, 2014 8:22 PM
    I used the previous WD-Live... until I found it wouldn't support 2.2TB+ HD's. Why wouldn't a HD Manufacturer make a device to use their own large HD's?

    Does this one do 2.2TB+? I just stashed it away in a drawer with the other stand alone media players and just went HTPC.
  • 0 Hide
    p05esto , May 28, 2014 8:24 PM
    These WDTV devices are awesome... so much better than Ruku for people that play local media files or have a home file server (the only way to go for techies). Now with that said there's no Netflix? WTF!!! That's a freaking deal killer. Buy the last version, without Netflix I wouldn't buy this. I love the file streaming from home sever foremost since I have 3500 movies there, but I also like Netflix and use that 25% of the time. Deal killer for this model. Buyer beware.
  • 1 Hide
    p05esto , May 28, 2014 8:26 PM
    Quote:
    I used the previous WD-Live... until I found it wouldn't support 2.2TB+ HD's. Why wouldn't a HD Manufacturer make a device to use their own large HD's?

    That's a limitation of 32bit I think... or at least the firmware (anything over 2gb needs udfi). Something like this anyway.
  • 0 Hide
    dimar , May 28, 2014 9:30 PM
    I use my WD TV HD mainly for Netflix and occasionally to stream music. I would upgrade it if WD were to release something with faster CPU/navigation and more features.
  • 0 Hide
    NightLight , May 29, 2014 6:08 AM
    Altough i use it daily, it does have weaknesses. The home network sharing is very bad, you have to reset the settings quite often, even if nothing changes in your setup. It does not have a plex client, and it has no resize for older 4:3 movies or eps.
  • 3 Hide
    2Be_or_Not2Be , May 29, 2014 6:41 AM
    Why do manufacturers still cheap out with USB 2.0?! I'm sure at this point in time, they're only saving $1. Meanwhile, that dollar saved is wasted when the product doesn't sell enough volume because it loses out to its competitors who have a USB 3.0 port.

    Penny wise, pound foolish!
  • 1 Hide
    somebodyspecial , May 29, 2014 9:17 AM
    No netflix=device malfunction at the highest level...LOL. I hope these sell ZERO units. Something is rotten in denmark when you don't support the largest internet video joint (and by far). Also yes, no usb3.0 is another deal breaker today. It's so cheap it should just be a given. I doubt its even a $1.
  • 0 Hide
    bmadd , May 29, 2014 9:47 PM
    This could be a replacement for me. We don't get Netflix in my country so tjat isn't an issue. USB2 vs USB3 also isn't an issue as it would provide very little benefit for a system with no internal storage.
  • 1 Hide
    somebodyspecial , May 30, 2014 12:07 AM
    Quote:
    This could be a replacement for me. We don't get Netflix in my country so tjat isn't an issue. USB2 vs USB3 also isn't an issue as it would provide very little benefit for a system with no internal storage.


    You can get netflix with vpn. ;)  Most are $10 or so /mo.

    What about a few people watching movies on an external drive (flash or HD etc) that is attached to this? At any rate Roku3 has a USB 3.0 port so why not? If you're going to bother with putting on a 2.0 port, you should just change it to 3.0 as there is almost no difference in cost and might hinder sales even if it did NOTHING.

    I can see a roku3 add now "we've got usb3.0 ports, and our competition has 2.0"...
    Why give your enemy something to pick on (or reviewers too)?
  • 0 Hide
    Truckinupga , May 31, 2014 10:08 PM
    No USB 3.0 Or Netflix, that makes about as much sense as power supply manufacturers still including a floppy drive connector.
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