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Video Hardware & Software

Need more Terabytes this Christmas?

November 26, 2008

NFL Goes 3-D

November 25, 2008

Blockbuster Sees Beauty of On-Demand

November 25, 2008

Netflix's 'Napoleon Dynamite' Problem: Worth Solving!

November 21, 2008

The Napoleon Dynamite problem is driving Len Bertoni crazy.

Bertoni is a 51-year-old "semiretired" computer scientist who lives an hour outside Pittsburgh. In the spring of 2007, his sister-in-law e-mailed him an intriguing bit of news: Netflix, the Web-based DVD-rental company, was holding a contest to try to improve Cinematch, its "recommendation engine." The prize: $1 million. 

Cinematch is the bit of software embedded in the Netflix Web site that analyzes each customer's movie-viewing habits and recommends other movies that the customer might enjoy.

Did you like the legal thriller The Firm?

Broadband-enabled Game Consoles: Bye-Bye Pay TV?

November 21, 2008

A report from research consultancy TDG predicts that portals like Microsoft's Xbox Live and Sony's PlayStation Network will soon become formidable competitors to incumbent Pay TV services.

Leveraging broadband-enabled game consoles as the next-generation video platforms -- and bypassing cable and satellite TV operators, these companies will offer a compelling alternative to traditional TV programming by providing a more immersive, interactive video experience.

The launch of Microsoft's Experience and the Xbox Live Netflix streaming video service is a perfect example of how potent these services will soon become. There is little doubt these services are finally ready for prime time.

Even before the launch of Experience, Microsoft's Xbox Live had amassed some 15,000 movies (1,000 of which are HD) and some 13,000 TV shows for download-to-own. The Netflix partnership adds 12,000 movies and TV programs to the mix, all for free streaming to Netflix subscribers.

How about a Waterproof TV for You?

November 20, 2008

Converter Coupon Expired?

November 20, 2008

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioner Robert McDowell recently fielded questions from the public about the DTV transition in Philadelphia, including this one:

"I thought I lost my converter coupons I received in the mail, but later found them in my desk drawer at work, the coupons had expired and I was told I could not get replacement, even though I told them I could send back the coupons I received. Is there a way to receive another coupon or am I just out of luck? Thanks for your help."

McDowell: "Great question. Congress mandated that the coupons expire within 90 days. So your best recourse is to find a friend, neighbor or relative who does not need a coupon to order one for you and give it to you.

Vudu Does HD VOD Big Time

November 19, 2008

Vudu, a startup that sells and rents movies via its Internet-connected set-top box, has boosted High-Definition library to 1,100 on-demand titles -- for now, outdistancing any cable operator's HD video-on-demand service.

To build what it claimed is the largest library of HD content available to consumers, Vudu added on average of 150 HD titles per week in October.

The service requires a minimum 4-Mbps connection for instant playback of HD titles.

Vudu is attempting to sell its $300 set-top to home-theater buffs by emphasizing the service's broad content selection and navigation features. Movies on the service are available for 24-hour rental for between 99 cents and $3.99, and $9.99 to $19.99 for download-to-own.

As part of its strategy to target high-end consumers, Vudu last month began offering 65 feature movie titles for rental in 1080p high-definition video format, the highest HD format currently defined. 

More at Multichannel News.

PC Magazine Stops the Presses - Online Only

November 19, 2008

I grew up reading PC Magazine and I looked forward each couple weeks to picking up my copy of PC Magazine at the local grocery store. But today, Ziff Davis has announced that the legendary PC Magazine print publication is shutting down its print publication and focusing exclusively on online content. This is truly a sad day... Hold on while I grab some tissues...

PC Magazine started the whole in-depth comparative reviews of PCs and Microsoft software.

Xbox 360 as Internet-to-TV Portal

November 18, 2008

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