Yesterday, we told you about an official AT&T press release that boasted of a partnership between AT&T and Sling Media, maker of the popular streaming television appliance Slingbox. In the press release AT&T CEO Ralph de la Vega said, “Just as we’ve worked with Sling Media in this instance, we look forward to collaborating with other developers so that mobile customers can access a wider, more bandwidth-sensitive, and powerful range of applications in the future.” AT&T’s CEO was referring to a compromise reached over the Slingbox Mobile media player that was banned from AT&T’s network due to bandwidth concerns. In a subsequent interview de la Vega continued, “They [Sling Media] made important changes to more efficiently use 3G network bandwidth and conserve wireless spectrum so that we were able to support the app on our 3G mobile broadband network.” So, what’s the problem? When Ars Technica caught up with Sling Media’s John Santoro, he had this to say: “We didn’t change anything, AT&T never discussed any specific requirements with us.” Santoro went onto explain that the code to optimize the Slingbox Mobile’s video stream, based on connection quality and network traffic, has remained unchanged since Slingplayer Mobile was first launched. A little egg in the face for AT&T, but hey, we’re getting Slingplayer Mobile, and in the words of Sling Media, “whatever the reason, we’re just glad AT&T has approved it.”
UPDATE: It seems that SlingMedia did, in fact, work with AT&T on getting this approved after all. Apparently while no code changes to the streaming portion of the application was changed due to AT&T’s requests, Sling did update it during continued development. AT&T later approved the application on their network for usage on iPhone devices.