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Last week, I mentioned (and apparently, no one else in the Appleverse did – or at least, I haven’t seen it) that Sling, makers of the Slingbox, had turned off  High Quality video streaming to iOS devices. As of this writing – 12 days later – it’s still off. They’ll still take your $30 (update: on sale now for $15 – and since it only half works, that seems appropriate) though for the app (twice if you have a phone and iPad), after laying out a couple of hundred (or more) for the box.

On Tuesday, the 12th day, they finally posted a notice on their support site, saying that a fix was ready for the SlingBox Pro-HD, and the fix was testing for the SlingBox SOLO. It said a firmware update was required. So I checked with my SlingBox, and it said an update was available. I loaded the update, rebooted – and still can’t get HQ video.

Update: a new version of the SlingBox app is out, and it restores the HQ quality. Maybe Sling should test with the iOS betas so they don’t screw their customers over for two weeks at a time.

I tried logging out and back in. I even tried deleting the app and reinstalling it. Some folks on the forum say if you do that, you will get HQ mode back – until you disconnect or leave the app, when the buttons again become inoperative (this worked before the fix, by the way, so is not part of the supposed fix). And that’s exactly what happened to me – HQ mode worked on initial connect with the re-loaded app, but failed after disconnecting and reconnecting. So it’s not like the mode doesn’t work – it’s just that Sling is disabling it via their servers (and this isn’t a guess on my part, they said so themselves). Others in the forum are reporting the same results I am  – still no HQ video.

I spoke with a friend who has the Vulkano unit I mentioned last week. He loves it. The player app is half the price, the box is less than half, and he says it’s working great with his iOS and Android devices. So if you’re in the market for a device to send your video to you wherever you are, avoid the Sling devices and take a look at Vulkano.


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