SlingPlayer Mobile To Hit The App Store For $30, Wi-Fi Only Thanks To AT&T Restrictions

According to our friends at Gizmodo, the SlingPlayer app for iPhone will finally be hitting the App Store sometime today or tomorrow. We caught a glimpse of the app at Macworld earlier this year and were quite impressed. At the time Sling promised that streaming would be available over EDGE and 3G, although AT&T has since released a statement saying that “Slingbox, which would use large amounts of wireless network capacity, could create congestion and potentially prevent other customers from using the network.”

Check out the full statement from AT&T below:

“Slingbox, which would use large amounts of wireless network capacity, could create congestion and potentially prevent other customers from using the network. The application does not run on our 3G wireless network. Applications like this, which redirect a TV signal to a personal computer, are specifically prohibited under our terms of service. We consider smartphones like the iPhone to be personal computers in that they have the same hardware and software attributes as PCs.

That said, we don’t restrict users from going to a Web site that lets them view videos. But what our terms and conditions prohibit is the transferring, or slinging, of a TV signal to their personal computer or smartphone.

The Slingbox application for the iPhone runs on WiFi. That’s good news for AT&T’s iPhone 3G customers, who get free WiFi access at our 20,000 owned and operated hot spots in the U.S., including Starbucks, McDonalds, Barnes & Noble, hotels, and airports. AT&T is the industry leader in WiFi.”

As Engadget points out, the reasoning behind AT&T blocking SlingPlayer on the 3G network seems legit until you realize that other phones are allowed to use the app over 3G. Because AT&T has a tight relationship with Apple, all they need to do is say “no” and Apple blocks it.

At $30, SlingPlayer doesn’t seem very appealing with no cell network support.

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