Samsung acquires United States set-top box maker

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Samsung acquires United States set-top box maker

Samsung Electronics, the world’s largest television maker, acquired Boxee, a New York-based start-up whose set-top box can record broadcasts and stream online video.

Terms weren’t disclosed. Boxee makes video streaming applications for phones and tablets based on Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS operating systems, in addition to the software that powers its connected TV box. Samsung said closely held Boxee can help it develop Internet-enabled devices.

“Samsung has acquired key talent and assets from Boxee,” a Samsung spokeswoman said in an e-mail. “This will help us continue to improve the overall user experience across our connected devices.”

Consumers’ living rooms are turning into a major battleground for technology companies. Microsoft and Sony are set to release new video game consoles with features for streaming and downloading entertainment content. Apple is nearing a deal with Time Warner Cable to add channels for its TV products, sources said this week.

Avner Ronen, Boxee’s chief executive officer, and the Samsung spokeswoman declined to comment on terms of the deal. Boxee had raised $26.5 million from venture capitalists, including New York-based Spark Capital and Union Square Ventures as well as the investment arm of Japan’s SoftBank.

Critics have praised Boxee, which signed a deal with Wal-Mart Stores last year to sell its Boxee TV product, for the design of its software.

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