SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone Reviewed

SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone

After many months of waiting Sling Media have just released the SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone.  At £17.99 it’s probably the most expensive app we’ve bought to date, but is it any good?  Read on to find out and check out the rest of the screenshots…

Once you’re through the ridiculous EULA and into the actual app we’d have to say that the look and feel is very nice.  It’s a “pretty” app with lots of HUDs using nice semi-transparent graphics.  It also uses gestures, with an up / down swipe changing channels and sideways swipes invoking favourites.

You’ll need an account from for the app to easily remember your slingboxes.  This is free a 2 minute job to setup.  There’s been a lot written over the last few weeks about the decision by Sling Media to remove support for the old Classic devices.  In the end they’ve put it back in but are calling these Slings “Unsupported”.

We tested the app on our own Automated Home UK Classic Slingbox as well as a similar one in the US.  The “Optimizing” popup showed the system buffering quite a bit, even though we’re on a 17 meg broadband connection with decent up speeds from both locations too.  You can switch between HQ and SQ to reduce the bandwidth requirements.

SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone
 Select your Slingbox – You’ll need an account from

The biggest single issue with the app however is that it will only work when connected to WiFi and not on the 3G cellular network!  Undoubtedly this is a restriction that’s come to Apple from the Network operators, but imposing this draconian restriction makes the app next to useless in its current form.  The Sling Media description on the app store says that it only works via WiFi “at this time” perhaps alluding to some hope that sense will prevail in the near future and we’ll actually be able to use this “Mobile” player how it’s intended.

For now however, as the Internet would say – FAIL!

SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone
Huge multi-page EULA – Who reads this stuff?
SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone
  What a cop out!
SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone
Full Control of your SlingBox – Including switching sources
SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone
The “Optimizing” legend shows the system buffering quite a bit, despite our fast network
SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone

Use Swipe Gestures to change channels

2 Comments on "SlingPlayer Mobile for the iPhone Reviewed"

  1. What I don’t understand is we have a Uk app store with some Uk only apps and are unable to get apps like amazon. So why do we have to put up with arts draconian anticompetitive whims when it comes to tethering and streaming

  2. Fogcitynative | May 18, 2009 at 9:17 pm |

    with the almost constant buffeting and optimizing actually watching a program in it’s entirety is impossible. This application is simply not worth the cost. Please do not waste your money until it works over 3G and it can play without constantly optimizing which freezes your program and kills the sound v when it finishes you have lost 30 seconds or a minute of the content. Try to follow an interview or news broadcast with the signal basically dropping out every minute.

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