On December 7th in New York, Avner Ronen shown off his companies latest version of their Boxee software. This latest version will bring Boxee out of the Alpha phase, and into the Beta.
The Boxee Beta supports an entirely new UI layout and design.
- The top section contains both local and Internet based media, now all in one click. It also houses the Boxee apps.
- The feed section to the left combines not only content from your friends on Boxee, but if you put in your Twitter or Facebook login, it will pull in video your (non-Boxee) friends post.
- The middle is featured content (or apps) recommended from Boxee. At this current time, Boxee is not getting paid for anything here, but they are leaving open the possibility of it.
- To the right is the queue area. If you find video in Boxee you wish to watch (but you don’t have time to watch it), you can queue it and it will go there. Avner said that there will also be widgets made available to queue video you find on the web that you wish to watch in Boxee later, but he did not demonstrate any at the event. Also, if you have a TV show set to a watch list, new episodes will show up in your queue.
One of my favorite new features is the bookmarking feature. While Avner didn’t demonstrate how video gets bookmarked, local video files can now be bookmarked so you can stop watching it, and continue watching at a later time picking back up where you left off. This feature is essential for me to begin moving away from MythTV for local video content.
Overall I will be very excited to test this latest version and I plan to do a walkthrough of it just like I have done with previous versions. Invites to test the software will begin going out anytime (if they haven’t already). For anyone not on the list, the software will be made available to the public as an open-Beta beginning in January.