So the unboxing photos of the Xunlei Media Player have been shared and so how does the interface looks like ?
Here it goes.. on the surface, it looks like a normal China made media player except there is an icon for the Xunlei Shop on the Media Player:
In one corner, it will never stop reminding you it is a XUNLEI media player
It does have a pretty snappy interface and things just roll around quite well. In addition, the settings are quite a lot and I never felt lost in the interface even though it is in Simplified Chinese. Anyway, the whole point is the Xunlei Store that is in the media player that allows you to “purchase” and download the movies/TV serials/variety shows etc.
Here’s the movie section:
TV serials section
You will want to upgrade the firmware when you received it. The original firmware was something like 30th August 2011 but there is a newer 2nd September version on the Xunlei Media Player sales page. Just two days but a world of difference.
The usual firmware upgrade steps in the media player will NOT work (i.e. you cannot go to the menu and choose upgrade firmware… it will not recognize the upgrade file you downloaded…). Instead, the instructions is in Chinese here.
My steps for your convenience:
You need to download the firmware, unzip it, place the IMG file into a thumb drive, plug into the media player, shut down the media player, press a toothpick into the RESET hole at the back of the media player and hold for 5 seconds (YES, A TOOTHPICK), then press the button to start the media player and while starting holding the silly toothpick, wait for the firmware upgrade screen to appear before you let go. The firmware upgrade will start and takes about 5-10 mins.
When the firmware upgrade screen appears, AC Ryan PlayOn media player fans will go crazy. It looked exactly like the firmware upgrade screen of the AC Ryan PlayOn. 100% similar when you upgraded the firmware of the AC Ryan PlayOn. So .. under the hoods, the so called classier AC Ryan playon is a Chinese media player huh ? Of course lah….
Never mind. Why the upgrade ? Apparently it allows for online streaming of Xunlei shop items and most importantly, the ONLINE TV section of the media player really got a LOT MORE new stuff as compared to the original version. I highly recommend you upgrade to the new version….
Online Streaming web sites for Chinese movies and TV shows and even Live TV shows.. I saw a lot of channels and one day, will try to play it during a Premier League match to see if I can find free English Premier League games
Here’s one online streaming app…
Okie.. now let’s talk about the activation of the media player.
Th fun part starts.. in order to download any of the movies in the SHOP, your media player needs to be activated…..Yes.. the Xunlei media player NEEDS TO BE ACTIVATED. What ??!! It is just like Windows software. Not only do you need to buy it but also after buying it, in order to use the Shop@Xunlei front end, you need to activate it.
Reason is that it needs to know you are in China so that you can use it and can link the yearly subscription account with your media player. However, if you are in Singapore, it does not work for you. You will NOT be able to activate it at all.
You will keep seeing this screen where a code DOES NOT APPEAR. You need this code to then enter into your online account to “link the online account with the media player”. Hence there must be a linkage or activation of the link between your subscription and the box (like iTunes and AppleTV2)… problem is if your IP is in Singapore, you can forget it, the screen will just keep showing “attempting to get code” as in this screen:
Dun bother to wait. If it works, it is just a few seconds. If not, you can wait forever… I tried all kinds of methods before finally found one method that works for me.
Here’s what you need. You need a VPN provider. For example, I use Overplay.Net (which has China servers and Hong Kong servers and which is why I signed up with them). Just like Apple TV2, the media player does not support VPN so even if you have a VPN provider, it is not enough. So that’s only step 1. You then install the Overplay VPN software on your laptop and connect the laptop to a router via an cable. That means you are doing a WIRED connection to the VPN server in HK or China on your laptop. That will free up your WIRELESS for use as a hotspot for others to connect (others in this case is the media player..).
Next on your laptop, you install a software called Connectify (http://www.connectify.me/). Use the free version. This will create a hotspot on your laptop. Don’t try to use the Windows 7 hotspot functionality. The media player refused to work with it. I dun know why. I noticed my HP Touchpad also does not work with Windows 7 hotspot too.
In the Connectify software, you need to be careful. You need to tell it to allow you to connect to the internet via the VPN (usually it is LOCAL AREA CONNECTION 3, in my case) and to accept incoming wifi connections via the free wireless Wifi connection. In other words, you are accepting incoming wifi connections to your laptop and then connecting your laptop to VPN provider’s server via the VPN software.
Complicated? Ya.. a bit.. a picture:
With the above settings, you are ready for next step.
You will then next go to the media player and DISCONNECT the wired line from the media player to the router (if you are using it anyway). You then use the free Wifi dongle they provided (see… so nice of them.. else we are dead…) and then plug into the USB of the media player. Next, in the settings of the media player, you switch off the WIRED connection then switch on the WIRELESS connection. The media player will scan all the wireless connections available at your place.
Find the Connectify wireless hotspot (you can see my name is “connectify-” and connect to it (with the password you set in the laptop.. u can see the screen above again).
Now… if it works, your media player will tell you it is connected to the internet.. you can then check to make sure it is so… and with hands trembling, you then go back to the Xunlei Shop settings and behold, you will find the code flashing in front of you !!! I nearly cried with happiness when I was successful…
Using this code, you will go back to the web site on your laptop and access your Xunlei shop account. Somewhere is a place where you can enter this code so that you can tie the media player to your yearly account…. complicated and messy…
But if it works…you can now go ahead and download movies directly from the Xunlei Shop inside the media player !!
Important note: I realized that if I put the set to standby, it will again ask for the activation code AGAIN when I try to download. So you will have to redo the whole process again. A bit like Apple tv2 tendered. Very Troublesome.. so please take note of that.. I have not tested if I leave it alone (never shut it down at all), will it also happened (i.e. the box poll the IP address every now and then). The good thing is that once you are back in the HK/China IP addresses, no need for activation. The set will know and you are fine.. just be aware…
The Shop Front where you can choose your movies..
I chosed Overhead 2 (the latest Chinese movie to be available in Bluray) and I chose the 720p version….
Immediately the download begins after I started it… and from the screen you can see that it is taking 514KB/s and will take another 36 minutes to complete…
All these from the media player itself….
And when it is done
The completed file in the silly XLMV format.. uuurgghhh
Which can only be played on this media player and certain PC software…
And the movie plays…
Also note that you don’t really need to download directly from the media player (actually it is the only GOOD reason to buy this media player but if you have troubles activate it, then forget it lor….you can still download on your PC and then copy the files over.. just like these photos show:
After that, just play it like any normal files…
There you go.. the Xunlei Media Player..
Not for the faint hearted .. maybe an Apple TV2 is easier. Too much work.