It’s no secret that we here at TechnologyGuide have grown to become big fans of Western Digital’s WD TV offerings. The latest incarnations, as WD TV Live products, have especially been strong competitors. Now, WD is joining such fan favorites as Boxee by providing Android and iOS remote controls for their newest devices.
Available as a free download from both the Android Market and iOS App Store, the remote control is another example of how Western Digital has made a promise of continuing to increase the functionality of their WD TV lineup over time, and without forcing their customers to pay for a newer unit just to get newer software.
The remote app itself is well designed and seems to replicate all of the functionality of a physical remote, but with the added advantage of being on a phone – so when you inevitably lose it, you can call your WD remote control on the phone and listen to its muffled rings proclaiming, “Hey, moron! I’m over here.”
One major bonus that the new software keyboard possesses over its hardware counterpart is an on-screen keyboard; that alone could make the new app a huge improvement.
WD also noted that starting today, VUDU would be available as a streaming service, bringing tens of thousands of new movies to users of the WD TV Live units. Many of those are in HD, and Western Digital’s interaction with VUDU includes the ability to stream newer movies both in 1080p and in Dolby’s 7.1 surround sound.
They’re available to rent or buy, but the wild majority of VUDU’s content is definitely premium, not free. In order to whet people’s appetites, users who activate a VUDU account on their WD TV Live players will receive a $4.99 credit toward movie rentals.