Joost is an online TV technology developed by the makers of Kazaa and Skype. It works by using p2p technology to deliver near TV quality full screen video.

I’ve recently downloaded and tried out the beta and I can say its a lot of fun. A lot of the recent feedback of the product has focused on the lack of content, which is currently a mishmash of a few music videos, animation shorts from film studios, b-grade sci-fi and semi-promotional material from ministry of sound. Personally I found some of the content quite good and for a product that has not yet officially launched I think its an impressive showcase. The demo out at the moment exists more to showcase the technology anyway.

The p2p streaming works great – sure I have very fast internet access (ADSL2+) but its the first time I’ve ever seen full screen streaming video.

My biggest gripe would be the interface which seems to stick dogmatically to something like Tivo and real TV which I think defeats the purpose of it being Internet enabled. I would like to see it behave a bit more like full screen youtube with a community aspect. I think the concept of “Channels” is perhaps misguided seeing as I will be selecting the shows anyway, maybe I could browse by tags but I don’t want to tune in and stop interacting otherwise I would just turn on the real TV.

Joost has a lot of potential but will be completely overlooked by the masses unless it can either acquire some big name TV show or makes it easy for user generated content. I’m hoping for the latter.

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