Friday, May 11, 2007

Software: Joost: Now That I Watched Some Shows


I actually watched content on Joost today, so I finally feel like I can review the way the software works. Overall I am pleased, but there is some good and some bad that I will try to explain.

First the good, the video quality (on my tiny laptop screen) is not bad. I am not sure how pleased I would be with it on a larger screen, but since I watch quite a bit of video on my tiny screen I was pleased. It was actually on par with larger podcast downloads which typically require pre-downloading and the H.264 codec that is commonly used for podcasts is rather process intensive. The CPU usage while using Joost on my computer tended to hover below 15% for Joost and around 22% total.

Surprisingly, Joost did not use that much hard drive access (although it was fairly constant). Bandwidth wise Joost is a bit of a pig, but actually I would like to see the program use more bandwidth, especially when I go back to UofL and have a bigger pipe than at home.

Now on to the complaints and other negatives of the sort... Amazingly, there is still no content. However, major progress has been made. The lineup is slowly expanding to include bigger name providers, but they are not putting on quality content. With the addition of more advertisers and the promise of more providers Joost may actually prove to be a direct competitor to traditional cable TV. This is great for me (a college student) who doesn't always get to watch television because of schedule conflicts.

Going over to the tech side some, I have a few complaints. When a program starts playing it tends to skip for the first few settings. I actually find pausing the program for a minute and the letting it play solves this problem. I have a feeling the increased load on the servers may be the direct cause of this problem and I would not expect this to be a problem for much longer. Another problem is the content skipping during computer use. For instance, I currently have Joost pulled up in a small window on top of my web browser and it has a tendency to skip once in a while. Mainly the audio just shudders for a second, but enough to be annoying. I am not exactly sure of the culprit here, it may be my computer, it may be the software, it may be something else.

One of the best features of Joost is definitely the fact it is an application. Recently I have been watching The Daily Show and The Colbert Report on ComedyCentral.com and have not been enjoying the viewing experience. It is very cumbersome to use a flash based player and (oddly) the processor usage is rather high. The best part of Joost is the fact all programming is on demand, meaning you simply pick the show and it starts playing. The main benefits Joost has over flash based players are it can go full screen and that when you restart it the program you were last watching is still there where you left off.

One of the down sides of Joost is the fact it is not easy to identify programs. Some channels actually have so much content it takes a long time to cycle through the entire list. I actually think they should make a sub menu so you can pick a show and then even a season if they start amassing a decent library.

One of the largest shortcomings of Joost is the lack of live content. The scary part here is that it may never be available. I am not an expert on the construction of Joost but it seems that the hybrid P2P system would not be very well suited to live streams. However, news form the Joost Blog seems promising about the P2P network as they reported the following.

We've also learned a lot about our system in the past couple of days, and more good news is that the P2P network is working well.


I guess I'll end by saying that I now have unlimited invites to Joost and if you want one just post your email in the comment section of my blog. The more people that start using Joost the more likely that better and better content will start appearing on it.

Joost™ the best of tv and the internet

22 comments:

Chung, P. said...

Hey Jared,

If you got an extra invite to Joost, I would greatly appreciate it. You can send it to my gmail account cpleung@gmail.com.

Thanks,

Jared said...

Invitation sent!

eugenia said...

Hi Jared, I'm from Argentina (excuseme for my english). Can you inviteme to Joost?. You can send it to my gmail account nefertitiargentina@gmail.com
Thanks a lot

Jared said...

Invite Sent!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am from Canary islands, and I am very interested in getting to know a bit about this new thing called JOOST. I would apreciate you could send me an invitation, and also one more question, Do you know if the Beta works with Mac ??
Thank yuo for your help, and my e-mail is juanortega28@hotmail.com

Jared said...

Invite Sent!

And yes, Joost does have a Mac version but the Linux version is not out yet.

Maria Gracia said...

Hi I'm from Argentina too, and I'll be pleased if you'd be so kind to invite me to join Joost. My email is gratia@datafull.com

Thank you so much

Anonymous said...

Hello Jared. If you still have extra invites to Joost, I would like to give it a try. Please send to remmy39@gmail.com.

Thanks,
David

Jared said...

Invites sent to Maria and David!

Victor said...

hello, victor, from malaysia here and i would like to get invited as well. no matter my request approved or not, just want to say thank you for such a great site!

faithful.victor@gmail.com

thank you!!!

success always!!!!

Jared said...

Victor, thank you for visiting my blog. I have sent the invite!

MARTIN said...

Hello Jared,

I recently heard about Joost and I had questions about it I enjoyed your blog. I am now very excited to try it for myself and I would apprecciate an invitation to Joost if possible.

Thank your for your time,
Martin Ramirez

ssmartindbz@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

Jared,

Joost sounds very interesting. Was there a lot of P2P discussion in the beta. I am interested to see the new offering and would really appreciate an invite to try it if you have an extra one. If you can spare an invite, please send it to me at tjhersch@yahoo.com

Thanks,
T.J.

Jared said...

T.J., you're invite is in the mail.

Warren said...

Jared: I like this idea. Please send me an invite. Thanks, wnoorlag@sbcglobal.net

Jared said...

Warren, you have your invite. Enjoy.

Familia Lapitzondo said...

Hi man, please, can you invite me ?
You can send it to my gmail account raul.lapitzondo@gmail.com.

Thanks

Jared said...

You have your invite.

Gustavo said...

HI!
My name is Gustavo and I'm from Buenos Aires, Argentina. I'll really apreciate if you can send me an invitation to join Joost. I read a lot about it and I'm looking foward to try it myself. I live you my e-mail: gustavo.novo@gmail.com
Thanks in advance!

Jared said...

Gustavo, I just sent your invite. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jared,

My name is Rene, I live in Mexico, I have a question... Is there a Joost version for Linux? I use Suse 10 in my job and I would like to install in this SO.
Could you send me an invitation, I really appreciate it, my mail is rdayala@mail.com

Thanks.

Jared said...

I sent you an invite, but Joost does not have a Linux version yet.