Boxee Gets $4 Million

12 Comments

Open-source social media center Boxee has raised $4 million in its first round of funding from Union Square Ventures and Spark Capital, which split the round 50-50. Union Square’s Fred Wilson and Spark’s Bijan Sabet are lead investors.

According to a Boxee spokesperson, the funding will be used not only to keep the doors open but to hopefully instill confidence in potential partners, such as device manufacturers, that Boxee will be around for awhile.

Boxee is a free, open-source media platform initially based on the XBMC project that allows users to watch and share media like movies, music and more from Internet-connected devices hooked up to their TVs. The company went into alpha in June of this year.

The New York-based company was started in earnest in 2007 has 10 employees, eight of whom are in Israel.

It’s always notable when a company gets funding in this current economic climate, but what makes Boxee more intriguing is that much of the news about the service recently revolved around hacking it onto devices like the Apple TV, or unofficially integrating services like Hulu and CBS.com.

12 Comments

rob friedman

It’s interesting that the Boxee, and XBMC software innovation grew from the fruits of the original hacked Xbox platform. Hard to imagine all the ideas we could have developed had the Xbox been open.

Matt_

Joost is partnering with Boxee and while Im not privy to the details of the partnership Im sure its a rev share deal and Boxee will use Joost’s Metadata to send users to the Joost version of the content that will have Joosts advertising, the Social aspect of Boxee is also similar to Joost’s JoostFeed and Joost has a API that Boxee is currently developing .

Roger

Is it rude to ask about the business model?

Its great that they got $4million but how are they going to make money on something that is aggregating someone elses content and appeals only to people who dont want to pay.

Nat

I have a hard time understanding the buzz behind Boxee, which is far as I can tell is just a branch of XBMC with a bad UI and major stability problems. The social media functionality seems like a tacked on gimmick at this point.

Plex is already a much more stable and elegant port of XBMC to OS X, and they didn’t need venture funding to get there.

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