Now you can add a fourth item to the list: New Zealand is the home of what claims to be the world's first film to be sold to the public as a 4K resolution file you can actually own at home. Called "TimeScapes," the movie is the brainchild of Orange County photographer and former serviceman Tom Lowe and New Zealand composer Nigel Stanford. It's a 50-minute film featuring some … Read more
There is a battle going on for control of your living room, and while there are many combatants, there's yet to be a clear victor. Thanks to a handful of so-called set-top boxes, Internet-delivered video and audio are becoming a big source -- if not the main source -- of TV entertainment for a growing number of people.
Nearly all Blu-ray players and game consoles (not to mention TVs themselves) now double as Web-centric entertainment devices. In the market for "pure" streaming boxes, two products have dominated to date: the Apple TV ($100) and the Roku box ($50 to $100, depending on features). Now a new player has thrown its hat into the ring, as Google has finally released its first living-room "AV system," the Nexus Q.
But at $300, the Google Nexus Q is expensive, far more expensive than its Apple and Roku competitors. Does the Nexus Q deliver something more for that hefty price? And which of these should you be spending your money on? Let's take a look at each.… Read more
First teased at CES 2012, Vizio's Google TV plans are now moving forward with the launch of the Co-Star Stream Player.
While we're still waiting for Google TV to fulfill its promise, the Co-Star makes the most of the platform's current capabilities by combining live TV and streaming services. Along with wired and wireless Internet connections for Web surfing using Google Chrome with Adobe Flash Player and HTML 5 support, apps, and streaming video and music services, the player can be connected to a cable or satellite TV box.… Read more
Manufacturers LG and Philips have joined forces to create a universal platform for apps on TVs, and the companies say the system has the support of Japanese manufacturers.
The newly created Smart TV Alliance is designed to create a single platform making it easier for customers to share apps across multiple TVs and encourage more developers.
"Before today, the Smart TV industry was a very difficult market for both TV manufacturers and application developers as TV's from different brands used different platforms and technologies," said Bong-seok Kwon of LG Electronics, president of the Smart TV Alliance.… Read more
A new Google TV box powered by Android 4.0 is coming this summer from Honeywld Technology, according to a story from IDG reporting from Computex.
The new set-top box will apparently feature AirPlay-like capabilities, allowing Android phones to stream media directly to a TV. However, unlike AirPlay, users will need to run a separate app to stream content, which doesn't sound quite as integrated as AirPlay is on iOS devices. (Honeywld also claims that its Android 4.0-powered Google TV is custom software, which implies these new features aren't official Google releases.) The boxes are also said … Read more
Samsung has announced a partnership with cloud gaming service Gaikai to provide console-free streaming to flagship 2012 LED TVs.
The service offers free trials and full versions of games such as "Mass Effect 3" and "Need For Speed: The Run" streamed to the televisions with gaming pad support.
The announcement follows rumors last week that Sony would be the one to announce a partnership with Gaikai.
Samsung representatives … Read more
Simple.TV's innovative take on the over-the-air DVR made a splash at CES 2012, winning CNET's Best of CES award in the home theater category. Now the company has turned to Kickstarter, looking to raise $125,000 before the product launches this summer.
While Simple.TV's concept of streaming and recording over-the-air TV hasn't changed (read my initial CES story for more information), Kickstarter is making some attractive bundles available to project backers. For $200, you'll get the Simple.TV box, a full year of advanced EPG data and remote streaming capabilities, a Mohu antenna and a Simple.TV T-shirt -- a pretty good deal, considering the Simple.TV box itself will sell for $150. For $300, Simple.TV will also throw in a Roku XD and a lifetime premium subscription.
Streaming video, with its instant access and wide selection, has exploded over the past few years. Whether it's Netflix, which despite some recent fumbles still remains hugely popular, or other services like Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, and so on, more services and content have become available. Even better, the number of devices capable of streaming that content continues to grow.
With so many options available to stream Internet content, what's your pick?… Read more
Last week, I was reminded that cable-cutting can beat cable when it comes to a commercial-free TV-watching experience. Yesterday, an excellent story from Ars Technica reminded me why streaming often feels much more satisfying than watching Blu-ray.
The U.S. government yesterday rolled out not one but two copyright notices, one to "warn" and one to "educate." Six major movie studios will begin using the new notices this week. [...] Will the two screens be shown back to back? Will each screen last for 10 seconds each? Will each screen be unskippable? Yes, yes, and yes.
It'… Read more
When people ask me if they should "cut the cord" and cancel their cable subscription, I tend to focus on negatives. You're going to miss a lot of sports, reality TV, and live TV events -- even if you get free, over-the-air TV using an antenna.
That's all true, but it's easy to forget that sometimes the cord-cutting experience is just flat-out better than having cable. I was reminded of this after reading a quote by former NBC executive Jeff Gaspin at the end of Bill Carter's recent story about declining TV ratings in The New York Times:… Read more