Column: Google's Chromecast -- my favorite gadget of 2013
Back in 2008, I purchased an Apple TV with the hopes that hacking it, slapping a copy of Boxee on it, and connecting an external 2TB hard drive would be the ultimate home entertainment experience.
Sadly, the underpowered device could barely run video over 720p or for a day of normal use without being restarted. It was a $200 piece of shiny junk that aggravated me consistently for a year.
Then came rumors of Boxee releasing a stand-alone device that could handle almost any type of media you could throw at it. With extensive app support and a remote sporting a full QWERTY keyboard, the Boxee Box lured me into the risky proposition of becoming an early adopter.
Long story short, it was glitchy, consistently broken, and wholly abandoned by a company that turned its back on its biggest fans. It was another $200 piece of shiny, oblong junk that aggravates me to this day.