Samsung Buys Boxee, Immediately Kills Cloud DVR

Keeping your work and your media in the cloud is totally awesome, right up until the moment when you’re kicked off the cloud. That’s the tragic lesson of the Boxee Cloud DVR (digital video recorder), the set-top box of many couch potatoes’ dreams. The key feature of the product–free cloud storage for your programs–will end tomorrow now that Samsung owns Boxee.

Yep, Samsung. Keep in mind that although Boxee sold set top boxes, their real product was software. Their product could turn most computers into a wonderful media center. The acquisition probably means that Samsung wants the company’s software and the talent who created it. Maybe this acquisition will lead to smart TVs with integrated cloud-based DVRs that also walk your dog and heat up some nachos. But what about those episodes of “Elementary” that I was saving up to binge-watch now? Better finish that binge by tomorrow.

Boxee announced the sale at the end of last week, and also that bit about how the DVR service (officially in beta) would be shutting down in just a few days.

Remember, thanks to digital rights management, you don’t buy content; you buy a license to use it for now. You may buy a device that accesses cloud storage that you pay for, but with no backups (or even with backups) you lose access to all of that content.

Boxee: Why What Happens Next Matters [Forbes]
Samsung buys streaming company Boxee, promptly shuts down its cloud DVR service [Consumer Reports]