Netgear EVA9000 Media Streaming Box Leaked

In the technology business it is often difficult to keep secrets--especially when products require legal protection for intellectual property as well as government-regulated certification. Some news hounds scour U.S. patent applications to see what potential products might be on the horizon for key manufacturers; others examine recent submissions to the FCC for Class A or Class B certifications (any product that emanates unintentional radio waves and that is intended to be sold in the U.S., must be tested to ensure that it will not interfere with radio and television broadcasts--Class A products are used in commercial environments, while Class B devices are used in homes). The FCC database is the latest source of product leaks for Netgear: the gang over at Engadget has discovered a treasure-trove of information about the (presumably) soon-to-be-released, Netgear Digital Entertainer Elite EVA9000 media streaming device.

Credit: Netgear

The Digital Entertainer Elite EVA9000 will be the replacement to the Netgear Digital Entertainer HD EVA8000, which came out in the spring of 2007. The new EVA9000 will support a maximum bit rate of 40Mbps, includes both 10/10Mbps Ethernet and 802.11b/g/n networking, and supports more video and audio-file formats (see the image below) than the EVA8000 does. Two differences immediately popped out at us: the EVA9000 includes the ability for you to  add an internal 3.5-inch hard drive, and unlike the EVA8000, the EVA9000 will include native Mac support (you can use a Mac with the EVA8000, but it requires non-Netgear-based solutions and workarounds).

Credit: Netgear

Curiously, not all of this "leaked" info comes from the FCC: Two of the images we're including here were actually downloaded directly from Netgear's own Website. There is a lot of interesting and highly technical data about the EVA9000 on the FCC Website, including a 191-page FCC Test Report on the device. Most enlightening, however, is the EVA9000's 148-page product manual (PDF file).

 Credit: Netgear via FCC

It is unclear when the EVA9000 will start shipping or how much it will cost--the EVA8000 currently has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price for $399.99. Engagdet predicts that the EVA9000 will be officially unveiled at CES in January 2009. That seems like a reasonable guess to us.