Watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup

Clint Dempsey

Having the World Cup in Brazil is ideal for soccer fans living in the United States with time zone differences ranging from only one to four hours for those living in the continental U.S. However, the World Cup, similar to March Madness, often takes place during the work day making watching a chore at times.

Similar to March Madness you can watch the games on your tablet, smartphone or laptop/desktop computer via authenticated services, this time through WatchESPN. If you’re a cable/satellite/telco subscriber you simply need to log in with your subscription credentials and the games will magically appear. You will find a delay in receiving the video on your device of choice, however, and those delays range from 40 seconds to well over a minute depending on what you’re using (Roku and Apple TV having the longest delays) so if there’s a TV somewhere else in the building/house, you might get a spoiler alert when there’s a sudden roar! Still, you’re watching the matches at work or at lunch or while recreating elsewhere so I’m sure many of you will take the minor inconvenience.

This sounds great, right? Well, unlike March Madness, it’s June and June is a time for vacation and travel both inside and outside of the U.S. Family vacations are in full swing with school being out and families are travelling all over the world. What’s more, it’s estimated there are 90,000 Americans in Brazil right now alone watching and participating in the World Cup activities. For anyone travelling outside of the U.S., the WatchESPN app. does not work.

With a Slingbox you have that same access to World Cup (or any TV programming live or recorded for that matter) on your device of choice (tablet, smartphone, PC/Mac, Roku, Apple TV, etc.) anywhere. And unlike WatchESPN, there are no geographical restrictions when using a Slingbox as long as you have an internet connection wherever you happen to be.

A rising tide raises all ships is the old saying and with more ways to watch great content on mobile devices comes greater awareness that these technologies exist and are readily available to use by customers. Just remember to read the fine print as you don’t want to be stuck with something that won’t work when you need it to the most!

In the meantime, enjoy the World Cup whatever way you choose to watch it. It’s been great so far and even though Dempsey’s goal is now only the 5th fastest scored in World Cup history, it was an incredible moment yesterday. And Brazil v. Mexico today was as intense a 0-0 match can be.


John Oliver on Net Neutrality

In case you haven’t seen it yet, John Oliver, host of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and graduate of Jon Stewart’s Daily Show, took on the monumental task of explaining Net Neutrality to his audience in a way only he can. Even for those in the tech industry Net Neutrality can be a tough subject to understand, much less the every day consumer who’s using Netflix or Amazon Instant Video or Slingbox to watch their favorite movies, TV shows and sporting events on their display of choice (TV, laptop, tablet or smartphone).

Not everyone agreed that Oliver’s points were correct and that his message would have the desired impact. Dan Rayburn, who has covered the streaming video industry for many years, took to his blog to deride Oliver’s rant saying it may have a negative effect on the industry and it lacked common sense. Rayburn also noted the plea Oliver had made to his audience to utilize the FCC’s open comments system was being used in a very un-constructive way.

Regardless of whether you agree with John or with Dan the 13 minute clip on the topic is pretty entertaining!