SOUND OFF: Would you use an app instead of a client?

Here’s your chance to shape the future. Which of these sounds good to you?

Option 1: A new Genie client

The current HD Genie client, believe it or not, dates back a decade. Although the current model is different in almost every way, you’d never know it other than the newer logo. The size and shape are the same as the first Genie clients. That’s a testament to good design.

The 4K client is also largely unchanged from its release about six years ago. It’s larger and runs hotter than the HD client, but works the same.

Both devices are simple and let the Genie DVR do all the work. Faster processors wouldn’t necessarily make a difference here. It makes sense to think of the Genie client as an adapter that’s designed to look like a receiver. It doesn’t do a lot of work on its own. It’s just a way to get signal from the DVR to the TV, and get remote commands from the user to the DVR. Nothing more.

So, would you like a new client box? Imagine a client box even smaller than the HD client, perhaps about the size of two decks of cards sitting one on top of the other. This box would be just large enough for a coax connection, power connection, HDMI, and some sort of custom A/V connection like current clients have.

Imagine if this box were cable of both wired and wireless communications, and output 4K. And, imagine that it wasn’t more than a few dollars more expensive than the current client. Would that be interesting to you?

Option 2: An app

Just imagine an app for your favorite streaming box. When you launched it, it would look more or less like a DIRECTV client user interface. Of course there would have to be some changes, because most streaming boxes don’t have the same number of buttons. There might be a change to the DIRECTV app for your phone that gives that functionality back, or you could just get by without it.

In this case, you could really simplify your home theater, which is something everyone wants. If you took this to its conclusion, where you’re using a Roku TV or one of the common Smart TV platforms, you could do away with everything besides the TV. That’s something some users have been pining for, since the late 20th century. For some, it would be a dream come true.

Just to keep things apples-to-apples, let’s say the app wouldn’t be free. You’d have to pay a one-time fee, and probably still pay the mirroring charge you pay now for every client. I don’t want to argue about whether or not you should have to pay for those things, because I just want to know the answer…

Client or app? Which is your choice?

Now it’s your turn to weigh in. Which would you choose, and why? Leave a comment below!

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.