Apple has a new trick, one all but overlooked in its recent announcement of the second-generation iPad. Devices running iOS 4.3 now do Home Sharing of iTunes 10.2 library content via wi-fi.
So if you have an iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch running iOS 4.3, you can stream movies, music, and other stuff from your PC or Mac running iTunes 10.2. This does not include the streaming and transfer of movie rentals.
Netflix recently announced it would start investing in original programming. Now producers who license their content to Netflix are retaliating against a partner that they increasingly see as a competitor.
Both Showtime and Starz have announced that they will withhold shows from Netflix.
"Technology breeds crime," FBI agent and one-time con man Frank Abegnale told a CEDIA breakfast audience. "It always has, always will." The subject of Spielberg's Catch Me If You Can discussed the misdeeds of his youth and offered two bits of advice to those seeking to avoid identity theft: (1) Use a micro-perf shredder--other kinds leave paper intact enough for reconstruction. (2) Pay for everything with credit cards, not with debit cards, which offer little recourse against fraud; nor with checks, which tell crooks more than you want them to know about your bank accounts.
Until now the default price for an album download has been $9.99, with iTunes setting the standard for other music download stores. But a recent pricing experiment involving Arcade Fire and Amazon suggests that a lower price will turn more downloaders into paying customers.
The days when Napster was the world's largest free music library are long gone. Soon, though, it may become the world's cheapest legitimate music subscription service, with a new plan that asks consumers for a mere $5/month for five free tracks and a whole lot of streaming. That's hardly even lunch money!
That's the slogan of IPac, a pro-consumer group. They want the folks in Congress to know exactly what they're doing when they limit fair use of popular products. The impetus for the campaign was a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the latest version of the broadcast flag bill. Eighty-year-old Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) announced that his daughters had given him an iPod and he was having great fun listening to his favorite albums on it. This changed the tone of the hearing as Stevens and Sen. John Sununu (R-NH) grilled lobbyists on both sides of the issue, including Mitch Bainwol of the RIAA and Gary Shapiro of CEA. To date the campaign has raised enough to buy 12 iPods. They'll come preloaded with a commentary, for senatorial edification, by legal heavyweight Lawrence Lessig on "balanced copyright." Come on, people, there are still 88 senators left!
When the phrase "video revolution" was in vogue, a generation of viewers weaned on commercial broadcast TV suddenly found they could skip ads in a whole bunch of new ways. With a VCR, they could time-shift programming and fast-scan through ads. They could rent ad-free movies at a video store (trailers don't count). And they could subscribe to pay-TV channels, paying for hipper programming almost without ads. But the heirs to those technologies--DVRs and video on demand --are increasingly overrun by ads, even though consumers have paid to avoid them.
By now it should be no surprise that HDTV unit sales doubled in the fourth quarter of 2006 compared to 4Q 2005. What might lift an eyebrow is that a third of those bright shiny new HDTVs were 1080p models, according to Pacific Media Associates. Just six months earlier, 1080p had accounted for only five percent of HDTV sales. What a change half a year of hype can make. For the alphanumerically disinclined, "1080p" refers to displays that show 1920 by 1080 pixels with the entire picture drawn one full frame at a time. Back when guys delivered chunks of ice to cool cordless refrigerators, analog television began using an interlacing process that scanned each frame in two passes, and this process still survives, sort of like the coccyx. However, some experts point out that paying a premium for 1080p may not be a wise decision. Notes our video editor Geoff Morrison: "From where most people sit, you don't need 1080p in a 37-42 inch TV. It's arguable that you do in a 50-inch set." Deal of the month: Buy one Pioneer Elite PRO-FHD1 50-inch plasma, get one free. Next big thing: the 120Hz refresh rate.
The most popular resolution in LCD HDTVs is now 1080p. The majority of LCD sets sold last year have 1080p resolution, Quixel Research has revealed in its LCD TV Market Review.
While 1080p was already dominant in 40-inch-plus models, it is now dominant in all models, as of the fourth quarter of 2010. The market share of 1080p was 51 percent in 2010 overall and rose to 54 percent in the fourth quarter of that year.