Keywords: Orb, Oakland, Apple iTV, Joe Costello, home digital entertainment, zennie62, zennie abraham

This is a blog post that was originally at, but was not imported to It also appears on So, I figured it was high time to reuse the text for content here on our new blog. Here’s the text:

For those who think Apple’s got the upper hand forever with Apple TV, check out Oakland-based Orb Networks new hardware to have your mind blown. The company taken over by the man who’s now its CEO, Joe Costello, has created a cool, sexy, and easy-to-use product that makes your iPhone or Android smartphone, or iPod or iPad tablet computer the nerve center for your home digital entertainment system.

And you don’t even need a digital television or stereo set.

As the video below, will show (get a cup of coffee and relax because it’s 22 minutes long) Mr. Costello and his staff have made a smooth looking, wel, orb called The Orb Caster, that connects with your existing television or stereo and allows you to call up (as an example) videos from any YouTube channel, or Hulu, or ESPN 3, just to give some examples of video sources.

But you can show not only videos, but photos from your smartphone or online platform, too. In fact, Joe demonstrates this in the video.

As you will see, you download the smartphone app that “calls” the Orb Caster from the Orb Networks website.

Here’s the video:

Joe Costello is no stranger to the digital space. The former boardmember of Oracle, and CEO of Cadence (which became the world’s supplier of Electronic Design Automation or “EDA” software), Joe’s an energetic man who’s youthful exuberance for his products and company is infectious.

Costello is a great model for any startup entrepreneur because he feels and believes in what he’s doing, and knows he’s got something that can change how people live in their homes. (And on top of that, he invested in the company himself. The origin of Orb Networks goes back about five years and before Costello; that story’s a blog post in itself.)

Orb Networks Blue-Ray

Joe’s also excited about his newest offering, the Orb Networks Orb BR software, where “BR” means “Blue Ray.” He says “The combined cost of a Blue-ray player and Orb BR software is less expensive

than most of the other Internet TV solutions, like Boxee and Google TV,

while providing more capabilities.” In fact, at $19.99 Costello’s got a point. In fact, all of the Orb Networks products are competitively priced. The Orb TV is $99 and the Orb Music Player is $79.

It’s the same price as Apple TV but with one big difference: the smartphone is the controller, whereas you have to enable Apple’s AirPlay provision to use your iPhone with Apple TV. And even with that, some have complained the ability to stream videos from platforms like YouTube isn’t yet “fully baked” on Apple TV.

Check out Orb at

By Zennie Abraham

Zennie Abraham | Zennie Abraham or "Zennie62" is the founder of Zennie62Media which consists of and a multimedia blog news aggregator and video network, and 78-blog network, with social media and content development services and consulting. Zennie is a pioneer video blogger, YouTube Partner, social media practitioner, game developer, and pundit. Note: news aggregator content does not reflect the personal views of Mr. Abraham.