Skyboxe’s new Android TV device is aimed at cord cutters

Skyboxe Hub (Skyboxe)

Skyboxe is positioning its 4G and 5G fixed wireless broadband device as an alternative for consumers who don’t want to pay cable companies for TV and internet.

The company said its Skyboxe Hub 4G – which combines hardware, data connectivity, and entertainment and productivity software – has received an equipment authorization from the FCC. That means the company can begin trials with potential wireless partners and soon begin selling the device and service to consumers. The company is also selling Skyboxe Live, a subscription service “tied to your wireless data plan that allows the Skyboxe platform to work seamlessly with your mobile service provider.”

The Skyboxe platform is powered by Android TV and provides fixed, high-speed broadband and additional services from a wireless carrier. The device can handle a combination of live, local broadcast TV channels along with free and subscription-based video-on-demand services. In addition to its 5G modem, the Skyboxe Hub also supports a 802.11ac Wi-Fi router.

"We're thrilled that Skyboxe has received its authorization from the FCC because it signifies that we will be bringing the platform to market imminently," said Jeff Allen, CEO of Skyboxe, in a statement. "With our FCC ID in hand, we can now enter into trials with our wireless carrier partners and accelerate certifications with them as a 'BYOD' (bring your own device) that consumers will be able to purchase in the coming months. With Skyboxe, businesses and consumers will be able to combine their fixed and mobile data plans together to lower their total costs."

The company expects the 4G version of the Skyboxe Hub will be available in the fall of 2020. The Skyboxe was originally announced in early 2019 with a target release date in the first quarter of 2020.

Before taking the helm at Skyboxe, Allen served on the management teams of Brightcove, IBM Video Cloud and Stack Path. Skyboxe’s executive team also includes COO Rob Shambro, who founded streaming video distributor Genos TV in 2009; CTO Bill Thomas worked at Zenith, Time Warner Cable, Nielsen Media Research and the company that would eventually become TiVo; and Jeff Berenson, head of product and engineering, who previously held leadership roles at ITVP Partners, ActiveVideo, Rovi Corporation, Vidiom Systems and Open TV.