Streaming websites are easy enough to get to, they’re just websites. Whether you type in the address, click a bookmark/favorite, or search for your usual sites, it’s not like they’re trying to hide. One way of making it even easier though, is to use a portal site that links to the various sites that offer streaming videos – whether they are TV networks or collections like Hulu.
Eclipse.TV is a web app for Google Chrome. Though it may work in other browsers, my experience has been best in Google Chrome as some things become misaligned in other browsers. It is currently in the Alpha stage and may gain more features than it currently boasts. As of publishing, it provides easy shortcuts to streaming sites by category or a customizable list of bookmarks on the Launchpad.
The design is visual and big enough to look well on a TV from an HTPC or computer connected to a large monitor. Another feature of the portal is that it lists resources that you may not already be familiar with – one of the most needed tools in cordcutting.
[Editor’s note: this review was written by Freewaregenius contributor Jason H. Check out his tech blog: 404techsupport.com].
Eclipse.TV is an internet television portal featuring a directory of the best video on demand channels, live stations, video streams, and television-centric apps. The site also features a launchpad of visual bookmarks, where you can save your favorite channels, apps, streams, or sites. Since it’s hosted online you can access your custom launcher from any modern browser (Chrome, Safari, or Firefox 4).
This is an ALPHA release! Alot of the design is incomplete or subject to change. That doesn’t mean the service isn’t usable, it very much is and we encourage you to try it out. When rating or commenting please consider this.
Primarily designed for set top boxes and home theater PCs, the portal is presented through a 1280 x 720 pixel leanback interface (10′ ui) with simple layouts, large fonts, oversized icons, and keyboard/remote navigation. If viewing from a couch distance it is best experienced on atleast a 30” HDTV.
Since the site is built for widescreen television resolutions you may need to zoom out if you plan to use it on displays smaller than 1280px, ie netbooks, tablets, small laptops. Likewise you may need to zoom in on larger screen resolutions.
Eclipse.TV is not an alternative to Boxee or Google TV, it’s primarily designed to compliment these and other internet television systems. Though it may be used as a variant to such services on TV connected PCs.
Remember, this is an early alpha that will be fluid as we recieve more feedback and add features. Everything is usable but don’t be surprised if things are changed or even removed.
You can install the Chrome web app for Eclipse.TV from the Google Chrome Store. This will give you easy access to sites like Hulu, CNN, YouTube XL, ESPN, Fox, PBS, MSNBC, ABC, Fox News, Amazon, and many more. Eclipse.TV also includes a bookmark for Clicker, another site that aggregates streaming content for increased convenience. Once it’s installed, you will see a link on your new tab window which just takes you to http://eclipse.tv/app.html. You can configure this app to always open in full screen, which makes it the most visually appealling, or you could always open it and switch it to full-screen manually with a press of F11 at your preference.
You can also create shortcuts to the Start Menu or Desktop by hovering over the icon on the new tab window and then clicking the wrench that appears in the upper-right corner. By selecting Create shortcut, a modal dialog box will pop up and present your options.
Version tested: Alpha
Requirements: Google Chrome (other modern browsers may work but Chrome seems to provide the best, most consistent experience)
Visit the Eclipse.TV page in the Chrome web store.