RealPlayer was the king of streaming media in the early days of the World Wide Web, but its importance has waned in recent years. Rather than focus entirely on streaming video and audio developments, RealPlayer branched out into paid content offerings and drifted away from the core free media player that everyone adopted to watch streaming movies in the first place. Also, Web 2.0 video sites such as YouTube, Google, Viddler, and Revver--mostly utilizing Adobe Flash Player--have owned the streaming video market.
The Web browser is now the dominant software for streaming media, and a new beta version of RealPlayer represents that shift in the media landscape. While RealPlayer seemed to originally be designed to prevent users from downloading music or video content locally, the new version 11 beta specifically allows users to save streaming content to their hard drives with the click of one button.… Read more
Tivoli Audio is well known for its tabletop radios, but the company has always remained somewhat on the conservative side when it comes to features: AM, FM, and CD, plus the occasional iPod dock and satellite radio. But the company is taking a firm step into the 21st century with a new pair of products, the NetWorks Table Radio and NetWorksGo. The models are essentially network-enabled updates of the Model One and the SongBook, respectively, with the Table Radio intended for stationary duty and the NetWorksGo offering space for six rechargeable C batteries (which you have to supply). Both models … Read more
uStream.TV lets almost anyone with the right equipment and some gusto put together a live broadcasting network. uStream combines live video broadcasting via a Webcam with live IRC chat. Content makers can create their own channels, complete with customized branding and show description.
uStream offers its users a range of ways to interact with show producers. They can rate and rank the show for promotion on uStream.TV's front page and add it to their list of favorites. uStream also makes it possible for them to embed it on blogs, Web sites, and social-networking profiles.
uStream … Read more
Mobile media company Melodeo, best known for mobile radio and podcast deals with cellular carriers, has launched the public beta of a new brand: Nutsie, which allows you to upload iTunes playlists to its Web site and stream them to your cell phone. (Get it? "Nutsie?" It's "iTunes" with the letters rearranged.)
So far, it's compatible with a bunch of different cell phones: the Motorola Razr, LG CU500, Sony Ericsson W600, and a handful of Samsung and Nokia handsets. Upon signing up, you export your iTunes library to Nutsie's Web site (no word … Read more
Before yesterday's firmware update, the PlayStation 3 couldn't upscale standard-definition DVDs to high-def resolutions--a once high-end feature that's now built-in to nearly all DVD players with HDMI outputs. But what's the real benefit of upscaling (or upconverting, as it's also known)? Despite some of the marketing hype claiming that upscaling will make your DVDs appear in true high-def quality, the increase in picture quality will never come close to matching that of native HD material (HDTV broadcasts, HD DVD, and Blu-ray). Moreover, the video quality improvement is completely dependent on how good the upscaling and … Read more
Slowly but surely, Sony's beginning to unlock more and more of that multimedia horsepower under the hood of the PlayStation 3. The 1.80 firmware upgrade--available as an automatic download to PS3s everywhere--adds a variety of features to the console, most of which bolster the system's AV prowess. The main upgrades are as follows:upscaling of games and DVDs: DVD movies, PlayStation 1 and PlayStation 2 games can now be upscaled to HD resolutions up to 1080p (games can upscale via component or HDMI, while DVDs are only upconverted via HDMI). streaming of digital media to PS3 via … Read more
In the past, Sonos has offered two configurations of its multiple-room Digital Music System--the original ZonePlayer 100 Bundle, and the more recent ZonePlayer 80 Bundle. The built-in amplifier on the ZP100 meant that you needed only to add speakers, while the ampless ZP80 was designed to plug into a nearby stereo system, AV receiver, or boom box. As of today, the company is splitting the difference. The new BU130 bundle includes one ZP100, one ZP80, and--the key ingredient--the company's unique CR100 wireless remote, which offers complete control of the two-room system with its iPod-like scroll wheel and color LCD … Read more
On our weekly Real Deal podcast today, Tom and I discussed lifecasting (e.g., Justin.tv) and the live streaming tools ordinary people (as opposed to 24/7 exhibitionists) can use to broadcast their own cams in real time: uStream, Stickam, ComVu (review), and Veodia (review).
Here's the show:
Our discussion wouldn't be complete without a live demo of streaming, so Tom and I both streamed ourselves during the taping, using uStream. We had some problems (most related to the ancient laptop I used to record the show, I think), but I grabbed a recording of the stream. … Read more
I got to take a sneak peak at a new video broadcasting service that opened its doors to a select few this morning. Mogulus is a live video broadcasting service the likes of uStream.tv, but with a twist: Multiple people can work on live video feeds at the same time. Each user can create their own branded channel, and fill it up with video content either from their hard drives or pulled in from YouTube. Each contributor can also command the broadcast using their Web cam, complete with customizable over-the-shoulder graphic overlays and a scrolling CNN-style news ticker. The result is a live blogging experience that's visually stimulating to the viewer, and completely customizable for the amateur content producer.
Mogulus is giving its producers two ways to share content--either embedding the live feed, or linking to their own custom URL. All public channels go into a listing for live feeds a la Kyte.tv, so casual users looking to tune into things that are live or interesting will be able to browse through and find something they like.
Managing broadcasts in Mogulus is handled completely inside of a Flash-based application. Content is clumped together in small management units called "storyboards," which can be inserted into any broadcast almost like video playlists. Producers queue up content, mix and match the order of video clips, and can break in at any time to broadcast live from their Web cam. Power users have a lot to play with, as it actually feels like a professional video-editing app with a ton of options for tweaking and fine-tuning.
Mogulus plans to roll out its service with two models, one free and one paid. The free version requires inserting a short advertisement for every 10 minutes of broadcasting, while the pro version lets producers go ad-free in exchange for paying a fee for every gigabyte of bandwidth transferred. My hunch is that many casual users will be OK with the advertisement model, with what Mogulus is tentatively planning to keep at around 10 seconds per ad.
More on Mogulus as it leaves private beta. Until then you can sign up and check out an explanatory video here. More screenshots of the interface after the jump.