Social media startup Boxee has raised another $6 million
in its attempt to fuse Internet video with TV. Now backed by a group of investors lead by General Catalyst Partners, this marks Boxee's second round of financing. Its first came last year in a $4 million contribution from Spark Capital and Union Square Ventures. The company plans to put its latest funding to work by inking more deals with media companies and set-top box manufacturers, and take on more staff to keep production moving.
Currently in alpha, Boxee is a free cross-platform
media center service that allows you to view both local (HDD, DVD etc.) and Web-based content in a TV-like manner. You're able to access content from a wide variety of sites, including BBC iPlayer, Joost, Last.fm, ABC, CNN, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Netflix, YouTube and so many others. It supported NBC's Hulu but was asked to remove the function back in February and the two have yet to establish terms.
Boxee incorporates a dense layer of social networking as well. You can follow the activity of another user, add them as a friend and publicly rate and recommend content. Your media activity can be exported to other popular social networking services like FriendFeed, Twitter, and Tumblr. It also features support for Python widget scripts to expand on its functionality via community written plug-ins and add-ons.
Naturally, a service of this magnitude which embraces free Web content poses a threat to big names in the TV industry - cable and satellite companies are still heavily reliant on hefty monthly fees. If you've seen Boxee in action, leave us your impressions in the comments.