Boxee secures Series B round, plans for more features and more developers
Just eight-months after closing a Series A round of financing, media center startup Boxee has just closed another round of financing. The Boxee team has secured another $6 million in funding, led by Boston-based General Catalyst. Given the economic climate (especially for start-ups), two financing rounds in the span of a year is pretty impressive.
What's really exciting, for Mac and Apple TV users (assuming they haven't gone all Aron on us) is that this means that Boxee can now focus on bringing users more features. As a company, they can also hire more developers to continue to make the experience as good as it can be.
I talked to Andrew from Boxee last night and pointed out some of the plans that Boxee has in mind that are really exciting for fans of the home media center space.
- Make the Product Better -- the Boxee beta is scheduled tentatively for later this fall. The goal is to bring the Boxee experience to the mainstream. I often forget that Boxee is still in alpha, but more improvements and refinements to the interface and the platform is just a good thing.
- More Content -- The Hulu kerfuffle notwithstanding, more and more streaming media services are seeing the value in the 10-foot viewing experience. What will separate Boxee from the Vudu or Hulu Desktops of the world is what content it can deliver to users.
- Attract Developers -- Despite launching a big API campaign, the Boxee App Store really hasn't taken off the way that some users (and developers) have hoped. I personally think that the variety of different platforms that are based on the same framework (XBMC) is part of the problem. Deciding to write your plugin for Plex or XBMC or Boxee can be difficult, especially since converting amongst the services is possible, but not easy. The team wants to make this easier.
- Get Boxee on more devices -- The Apple TV and Boxee have been a great match (pure technical limitations for stuff like Netflix and full HD *.MKV files aside), but obviously getting onto more and more devices is the key to keeping development fresh and more content available.
I think Boxee has been a tremendous boon to the Mac and the Apple TV communities (we got it first, which I think was recognition that Mac owners are frequently the first to do lots of HTPC stuff) and in the last few months, Boxee as a platform has really improved.
My forthcoming (I swear!) Ultimate Mac mini HTPC series will dive into some more of my favorite Boxee Apps and features. What are some of your favorite Boxee apps and add-ons so I can make sure to try them out and add them to my list?
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