ClearStream TV is a digital TV tuner with a twist: It tunes in over-the-air television broadcasts (with the help of an antenna you purchase separately), but instead of sending the programming directly to your TV, it streams the video signal over your Wi-Fi network. Install the ClearStream TV companion app on your favorite streaming device, smartphone, or tablet, and you can watch, pause, and rewind live TV.

I’ve been using it for a week and discovered some of its quirks and advantages.

How it works

ClearStream TV looks like an oversized USB stick. It houses an ATSC TV tuner for North American over-the-air broadcasts, plus an 802.11n Wi-Fi adapter. The tuner doesn’t support the QAM standard (neither encrypted or unencrypted) that the cable-TV industry uses, so you’ll need to provide a digital TV antenna to pull in your local broadcasters’ signals.

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ClearStream TV review: This digital TV tuner lets you pause and rewind live TV