Western Digital Announces the New WD TV Live with Spotify

Oct 06 2011

Western Digital announced today their newest entry into the WD TV family of media streamers, the WD TV Live. The WD TV Live drops the 1 TB drive of the WD TV Live Hub to create a smaller box reminiscent of previous WD TV models, but with the improved UI and service support of the WD TV Live Hub. Western Digital does not indicate whether the Live and the Live Hub are using the same SoC, but a quick perusal of the specs for each does show format support parity.

Western Digital is also touting the WD TV Live as the first media streamer with Spotify support, though the press release indicates that Spotify support is being adding to the WD TV Live Hub. The WD TV Live streamers will also be adding Dailymotion to their list of online services.

I have been consistently impressed with Western Digital's streamers. I had a 1st generation WD TV in my wife's gym for a couple of years and spent several weeks testing out a WD TV Live Hub, but just could not justify the expense that the internal drive added when I was streaming everything off my WHS, even though I thoroughly enjoyed the new UI that it introduced. Priced at $99.99 USD, this slimmed-down WD TV Live sounds pretty ideal for those who do not need the local storage. 

Adding to the WD TV family's current content offerings from Netflix, Hulu Plus, Blockbuster, CinemaNow®, Pandora®, YouTube™, Facebook® and many others, WD TV Live and WD TV® Live Hub™ are the first streaming media players to deliver Spotify's acclaimed music service. Premium Spotify subscribers can now enjoy unlimited on-demand access to Spotify's catalog of over 15 million songs in excellent sound quality (available in up to 320kbps) on their home entertainment system.

Western Digital

--Complete Press Release after the break.--

 WD® LAUNCHES NEW WIRELESS STREAMING MEDIA PLAYER, FIRST TO DELIVER SPOTIFY® MUSIC SERVICE


New WD TV® Live™ Adds Breakthrough New Media Streaming Service to Menu of Premium Entertainment Content

 

IRVINE, Calif., - Oct. 6, 2011 - Western Digital® (NYSE: WDC), the world's leader in external storage solutions and maker of the popular WD TV® media player family, today introduced the next generation of its WD TV® Live™ streaming media player, an easy to use Wi-Fi® enabled media player that is the first in its category to deliver the Spotify® music service. 

WD TV Live features WD's newest intuitive user interface that delivers the latest hit movies, TV shows, music and online services from companies like Netflix®, Hulu Plus™ and Blockbuster® directly to your TV. The new streaming media player connects to the Internet wirelessly or through an Ethernet connection, with the high performance 802.11n wireless connectivity supporting Full-HD 1080p video resolution. 

In addition to premium Internet content, WD TV Live allows users to enjoy personal media such as photos, video and music on their home entertainment systems by supporting a wide range of file formats for streaming content from any connected USB drive, digital camcorder or camera, network drive such as the My Book® Live™ personal cloud storage, and any networked PC or Mac® computer in the home. 

Adding to the WD TV family's current content offerings from Netflix, Hulu Plus, Blockbuster, CinemaNow®, Pandora®, YouTube™, Facebook® and many others, WD TV Live and WD TV® Live Hub™ are the first streaming media players to deliver Spotify's acclaimed music service. Premium Spotify subscribers can now enjoy unlimited on-demand access to Spotify's catalog of over 15 million songs in excellent sound quality (available in up to 320kbps) on their home entertainment system. 

WD incorporates Spotify's popular features in the new service, including the ability to create and manage Spotify playlists, share songs to Spotify friends, and see and subscribe to friends' playlists via their Spotify profiles. Users can also share tracks by sending songs directly to other Spotify users' inboxes. Spotify for WD TV Live and WD TV Live Hub delivers an exciting new way to enjoy and share music on the best sound system in your home. 

"WD is committed to providing our customers with a premium entertainment experience that includes seamless streaming of personal media and the best of the Internet directly to the highest quality screen and sound system in the home," said Jim Welsh, executive vice president and general manager for WD's Branded Products and Consumer Electronics groups. "By marrying advanced features of the new wireless WD TV Live with quality content from service providers, including a first of its kind service with Spotify, we are excited to deliver on that commitment." 

Pascal de Mul, Global Head of Hardware Partnerships, Spotify, commented: "We're really excited to make further steps into the living room with the streaming media players from Western Digital, which from today offer the full Spotify streaming catalog in a truly innovative TV-focused user experience." 

In addition to Spotify and WD's current content offerings, WD TV Live and WD TV Live Hub will also now include theDailymotion video service. The application offers quality video content from users, independent content creators and premium partners, including high-quality and HD video. 

Price and Availability 
The new WD TV Live streaming media player can be purchased at select retailers worldwide and online at wdstore.com. MSRP for the WD TV Live streaming media player is $99.99 USD. Spotify is now available on the new WD TV Live players, as well as the WD TV Live Hub streaming media player, which features a built-in 1 TB hard drive to store personal content locally for TV streaming. The Spotify service is available in eight countries: USA, UK, Sweden, Finland, Norway, France, the Netherlands and Spain. 

About WD 
WD, one of the storage industry's pioneers and long-time leaders, provides products and services for people and organizations that collect, manage and use digital information. The company designs and produces reliable, high-performance hard drives and solid state drives that keep users' data accessible and secure from loss. Its advanced technologies are configured into applications for client and enterprise computing, embedded systems and consumer electronics, as well as its own consumer storage and home entertainment products. 

WD was founded in 1970. The company's storage products are marketed to leading OEMs, systems manufacturers, selected resellers and retailers under the Western Digital and WD brand names. Visit the Investor section of the company's website (www.westerndigital.com) to access a variety of financial and investor information. 

About Spotify 
Spotify is an award-winning digital music service that gives you on-demand access to over 15 million tracks. Our dream is to make all the world's music available instantly to everyone, wherever and whenever they want it. Spotify makes it easier than ever to discover, manage and share music with your friends, while making sure that artists get a fair deal. Spotify is available in eight countries: USA, UK, Sweden, Finland, Norway, France, The Netherlands and Spain, with more than 10 million registered users, and over 2 million paying subscribers. 

Comments

Here's a review up over at Zats Not Funny on the new hardware. I personally own the WD Live TV Hub. I load it up with tv shows, movies and what not when I head to the cabin or go to my in-laws who don't have cable or satellite tv.

-Josh

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