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SlingPlayer app for Kindle Fire available on January 31st for $29.99 (hands-on)

SlingPlayer app for Kindle Fire available on January 31st for $29.99 (hands-on)


Sling Media will release its SlingPlayer app for the Amazon Kindle Fire tomorrow. It'll cost $29.99 and it requires either a SlingBox Solo or Pro-HD. Read on for our hands-on impressions of the new app.

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Sling Media has a SlingPlayer app for just about every device and operating system under the sun: Android, iOS, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Palm OS, and Symbian devices are all covered, and that's not to mention the Google TV, Boxee Box, Facebook, and web browser options. One big omission (if you don't count webOS) is the Kindle Fire, but as of tomorrow users of the $199 tablet will be able to stream live TV on the go after downloading the $29.99 app from the Amazon Appstore. We just finished playing with the app, so read on for some of our impressions.

SlingPlayer app for Kindle Fire (hands-on photos)


While the Kindle Fire does share some Android roots with Honeycomb tablets, the Fire's SlingPlayer app unfortunately doesn't retain the usability of the Android tablet version that launched last October. This version of the app does not include an integrated SlingBox guide and it lacks a remote control interface that mimics the what you'd actually use at home. Instead, you have to use lots of on-screen buttons and you need to work your way through your television operator's slow cable guide — not the attractive, fast, and touch-friendly one that resides on Sling Media's Honeycomb version. The good news is that streaming TV stations over our Wi-Fi network took no more than a second or two to load, and we had no problems maintaining an HD stream.

If you're committed to the SlingBox platform (and own a Kindle Fire and a SlingBox Solo or Pro-HD), then it's probably a good idea to invest in the app so that you can watch live TV on the go. However, if using your SlingBox on the go is important to you and you're still on the fence as to whether or not you should buy a Fire, Honeycomb tablet, or an iPad, we'd have to recommend that you go for something other than Amazon's slate — the SlingPlayer app just doesn't stand up in its current form.

Amazon's product page for the app is live right now, but you won't be able to download it until tomorrow.