Hillcrest Labs has unveiled the latest version of Kylo, the free Web browser for television, with many new features for consumers who view online content on their PCs or Macs connected to the TV.
Kylo lets users access sites across the Internet, with a browser that was specifically designed to be viewed from a distance in the living room, family room or dorm room.
Also, Hillcrest’s companion product, the Loop pointer, is now available for $69 in the U.S.
Today, a slew of tech companies are trying to make inroads in the traditional TV markets by introducing an array of products. Veebeam, a wireless company that offers to bring Internet video content to TV, has announced a 1080p HD media player named Veebeam.
It allows consumers to wirelessly stream anything from their laptop to their TV. Internet-delivered movies, sports websites, photos and more can also be shared on any HDTV. (Read: Veebeam Media Player to Show Web Movies on TV)
GlideTV, which introduced handheld wireless touchpad – the Navigator, says it has released the beta version of its What’s On visual guide to online entertainment and a big screen web browser specially made for the living room.
The free online service and downloadable software allows users to see what shows and entertainment are available across the entire web in a single glance and browse them by category and genre. (Read: What’s On Guide Offers New Fun for Internet TV)
Netflix has gone a step further to deliver TV content to mobiles. It has introduced its free Netflix App, allowing Netflix members to instantly watch TV episodes and movies streamed to their iPhone or iPod touch. (Read: Watching TV Episodes, Movies on Your iPhone)
And DISH Network, a pay-TV provider in America, has announced a free app for the Apple iPad: DISH Remote Access. It is claimed to be the first and only app from a TV service provider designed for the iPad that allows users to control their televisions remotely. (Read: When Apple iPad becomes a Remote Control)
The latest version of the Kylo browser (Kylo Beta 0.8) is available for free via download at www.kylo.tv.
The latest Kylo browser includes new enhancements, including: an instant visual search feature that provides thumbnails of images as users begin to type search terms, enabled by a new integration with Clicker.tv; a simplified user interface; improved bookmark management and customization; tighter product integration for users of Windows Media Center; a new Kylo Directory for users in the UK; and more.
The company says Kylo browser is not meant to replace traditional browsers such as Internet Explorer, Safari or Firefox for use with standard computer display screens, but instead is for use on a television connected to a computer.
Unlike other applications or websites, Kylo is not a “walled garden” of aggregated video content, but rather a true Web browser that lets users go where they want across the Internet, says the company.
Compared to conventional browsers, the Kylo browser provides more on-screen viewing space and less visual clutter; larger fonts and buttons for easy navigation from across the room; an easy-to-use onscreen keyboard; and zoom-and-pan capability for enhanced viewing.
“Kylo is the simplest, most open and affordable way to enjoy Web content on TV,” said Dan Simpkins, founder and CEO of Hillcrest Labs.
“For the vast majority of households that already own a computer, there is no need to buy a separate box or pay additional subscription fees in order to enjoy the entire Web on TV. With our new product enhancements, Kylo is an even better browser than before, and we are very proud to offer a version for the UK for the first time.”
The Kylo browser for TV works with any mouse, but is ideal for use with Hillcrest’s Loop pointer, an in-air mouse that uses Hillcrest’s Freespace in-air pointing and motion-control technology.
The announcement for the latest version of the Kylo browser came today, Oct. 5.
Hillcrest Laboratories (a.k.a. Hillcrest Labs) sells products to consumer electronics manufacturers, service providers, and consumers that enable interactive digital media experiences for TVs and other digital media devices.