I just recently discovered PlayOn! which is a media server that allows you to stream content to your PS3 or Xbox from online sources like Hulu, YouTube, CBS, Netflix and others. Setup is super simple. Just download a small app to one of your computers on the same network as the console, install it, put in your credentials (for the sites that require it), and then browse to the new media server on your PS3. I literally was up and running in about 5 minutes.

So far I really love the service. I’m an active Netflix user and love the “Instant Watch” section. I used to run this through a computer hooked up to my TV, which worked, but was extremely clunky to use. There are separate boxes you can buy to have this same functionality, but why pay for new hardware when the PS3 is already hooked up, network ready, and fully capable. I also really like having Hulu and other mainstream media sites built right in. It’s just one more step in moving to the on-demand, internet ready media systems that are starting to take off.

The only downside to the software is that it’s not free. I’m currently using the free trial, and I’m told that the software will be ~$30 when it’s out of beta and no longer a free trial. A bit of a road block for some, I’m sure, but more than worth it for me to be able to do this completely seamlessly without adding another box to my living room setup.

I’m also planning to give Boxee a try soon. As far as I know there’s no way to stream this to the PS3, but I’d be willing to use a PC for this if it worked well enough. I’d also like to find a nice way to watch video podcasts on my PS3…anyone out there doing this?

Overall a really great piece of software that is super simple to use. Definitely recommend it.

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