Remember Akimbo? It’s gone now. The company launched an internet-connected hardware box for your TV a few years ago and charged about $10 a month for a handful of channels, some mainstream. After a while, Akimbo abandoned the hardware aspect and made itself into a software service that you could use with, say, Windows Media Center. I tried it for a very brief period of time and found the content to be similar to what you’d find on Joost nowadays, except back then you had to pay for it.
There are probably a myriad of reasons why Akimbo had to shut its doors, but when it comes to IPTV, video-on demand, and other non-mainstream entertainment delivery systems, you’re only as good as your content.
I also found this comment by TechCrunch reader Shane Robinson to be a bit telling;
Our daily internet video show, Beach Walks with Rox (http://www.beachwalks.tv) was 1 of 5 videoblogs that were invited by Akimbo to be distributed to their set top boxes. We were with them for less than a year and never saw any traffic from their service.
Their system was closed, we had to create special .WMV files, and except for one engineer that left a while ago (who was a fan of our show and constantly helped us even though it wasn’t his job and with whom we remain great friends) their customer support staff was unhelpful and not at all knowledgeable. Their set top boxes were constantly on the fritz.
We predicted they’d shutter over a year ago. I believe that’s when they did die. They just didn’t know it because they had all that funding.
Akimbo apparently raised millions upon millions of dollars worth of funding, which would have been enough to keep the company afloat for quite some time.
Did anyone own the Akimbo set-top box or use the service? Your thoughts?