Media streaming has become a common facet of modern smartphones, although unless you have a cutting edge TV with networking capabilities it can be tough to get your videos and photos on the big screen.
While companies like Apple have addressed this with AirPlay or DLNA as is preferred by LG and others, Taiwanese manufacturer HTC has opted for an entirely different approach with its latest Media Link HD box.
The Media Link HD device is very small, with the same dimensions as a credit card, so it will be easy to pop it next to your TV unobtrusively without requiring that you put yet another boxy device in the nest below.
Despite its size, the Media Link HD actually has a decent amount of performance available to it as it can display full high definition 1080p video via a compatible HDMI-ready television set. Of course since the device lacks any dedicated storage or interface of its own, you will need one of HTC`s latest One-branded smartphones to get the job done.
For the time being only the range topping HTC One X and the slightly more affordable HTC One S are compatible with the Media Link HD, so the actual market for the device could be limited unless the long term sales of these models are decent.
You can synchronise your smartphone with the Media Link HD in a matter of seconds and then begin to stream media content direct to your TV while controlling everything using your handset.
Of course since both of these compatible models have multi core processors it is possible to get on with other tasks while the media is streaming. This means your smartphone will not be rendered unusable while it is streaming high definition video and the wireless nature means that you will barely notice it is occurring.
Like Apple`s AirPlay, it is possible to effectively `fling` content onto your TV using the Media Link HD box. This is achieved by using three fingers to swipe upwards on your phone`s display while you are watching a video or viewing other media files.
The idea is to make it incredibly easy to share things with the other people who are in the room. You could be watching a YouTube clip, for example and then transfer the stream from your phone to your TV relatively seamlessly.
This is by no means an original idea, but it is one that HTC fans may have been crying out for if they have seen the AirPlay and DLNA capabilities available on rival handsets and wanted a piece of the action.
You can get the HTC Media Link HD device up and running in less than half a minute and it even has a built in battery so that it can be almost entirely wireless, with a USB charging port allowing you to keep it topped up.
If HTC is able to offer the Media Link HD along with a handset as part of pay monthly deals then the subsidised price might make it appealing to new users. As a standalone device, its future is less certain.
Photos courtesy of HTC here