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Do-it-all media software Boxee just got a new update that should have Apple (s aapl) users jumping for joy. It incorporates elements from recent test releases and is now relatively bug-free compared to early antecedents. Those elements include Hulu and Pandora integration, as well as other App Box releases.
The alpha will get Hulu working again, in case you haven’t already downloaded the test fixes. The reason for Boxee’s renewed ability to play Hulu video is the new XULRunner browser it uses to play video, which sidesteps Hulu’s recent limitation of playback to non-browser based devices and applications. It also enables Boxee to play pretty much any video you can find on the web by adding URLs with video RSS feeds as sources. In the new alpha release, all of these features — and the new support for Pandora, PBS and RadioTime — are present, minus the bugs and connection issues that were present in the test builds.
The big news for developers is that Boxee also released its official API late yesterday to the public, so that anyone can develop their own plug-ins for the software. Development is supposedly open to all, with Boxee claiming they won’t decide what is and what isn’t published. Users will be able to install new applications via the App Box. The API is Python-based, and comes with full documentation. You can learn more about the API at Boxee’s developer web site.
Now that Boxee is open for community development, it truly has become more or less exactly what Apple TV should’ve been. Apple should be taking notes, or at least thinking about not trying to bar access to its hardware every time it releases a firmware update.