September 2, 2009

Blockbuster Sees Decline in Subscribers

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It seems that Blockbuster continues to be beleaguered by problems. Its latest 10-Q reports that rental revenues have had a $76.3 million decrease in by-mail and a 30% decline in by-mail subscribers. While the company claimed it had about 3 million subscribers in 2007, a recent estimate puts that figure between 1 and 1.25 million now. We know that every time we drive by one or any of our other local video rental stores we have noticed that the amount of cars in the parking lot has lessened.

Via Zatz Not Funny

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

June 29, 2009

Windows 7 Price Reduced Until July

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Can't wait for the Windows 7 debut in October? Microsoft, in an effort to make you squeal with delight, is offering the Home Premium Upgrade for a mere $49.99 if you pre-order before July 11. You save $70.00 on the pricing and can also get a good deal on Windows Professional Upgrade. The upgrade will work on most PCs with Vista or XP but is only available to those in the US and Canada.

Via Windows 7 Upgrade

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 25, 2009

Fox To Omit Extras From Rental Discs

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20th Century Fox Home Entertainment apparently seeks to punish movie renters. Beginning the end of this month, the movies
"Marley & Me"
and
"Slumdog Millionaire"
will come in two different classes, a premium version with bonus material and a film only version for rental stores. The Slumdog rental Blu-ray has bonus features but no digital copy.

While retail rental stores can purchase a premium version for customers, we are somewhat mystified by the plan. Anyone who streams or subscribes to Netflix sometimes miss those extras unless they ask for the second disc, but often they are largely composed of previews and deleted scenes. We figure if the director didn't think enough of them to include them in the movie, we don't really care either.

Via Video Business

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

February 12, 2009

Farewell to Circuit City

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We just saw a commercial for Circuit City. It was almost sad with the blaring voice telling everyone they were liquidating their 567 stores in the style of a Starving Artist sale. A visit to their site is equally depressing with a thank you to customers and mention of the fact that they were in business for 60 years. While you can trot over there and pick up some relatively inexpensive electronics, remember that you will not be able to return the items or get a refund at a later date from the chain, so only purchase from reputable names.

Via Circuit City

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 28, 2008

NFL Teams with NBC to Stream 17 Regular-Season Games

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This is great news for us NFL fans. The NFL and NBC Sports are teaming up to offer some streaming football for free this season. According to SportsBusinessJournal.com:

The NFL will stream 17 regular-season games live this season, marking the first time regular-season action will be broadly streamed in real time in the United States.

Starting with the NFL Kickoff game on Thursday, Sept. 4, between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants, the league plans to stream NBC's prime-time schedule on NFL.com and NBCSports.com as part of a plan being engineered by NBC Olympics President Gary Zenkel and Brian Rolapp, NFL senior vice president of digital media.

This is pretty exciting news. While the NFL offered some streaming football on NFL.com last year, it was a combination of talk show and live cut-ins resulting in only about 50 percent of the game being viewable. Are you excited about the NFL and NBC deal? Leave us a comment.

At SportsBusiness Journal.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 23, 2008

Major Players Join Forces on Wireless HD Standard

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When it comes to new technology standards, it seems the major players all go in their own direction. Well it appears there may be some teamwork at play with an Wireless HD Standard. According to Engadget:

WHDI creator AMIMON has joined forces with Motorola, Samsung, Sony and Sharp in order to form "a special interest group to develop a comprehensive new industry standard for multi-room audio, video and control connectivity" utilizing the aforementioned Wireless Home Digital Interface technology. Reportedly, the group will have a standard completed before 2009 dawns, but we all know how easily these things can get pushed under the rug.

We agree the standard probably won't be ready by 2009 but we're excited to see some progress towards a standard.

At Engadget.com (image source: Engadget.com)

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

July 14, 2008

Microsoft Cuts Xbox 360 Pro Price - Unveils 60GB Xbox 360

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A few weeks ago we told you Microsoft was going to drop the price of the Xbox 360 Pro. Well they also threw us a curveball by releasing a 60GB model. According to PCWorld:

We knew a price cut for Microsoft's mid-grade Xbox 360 was imminent, but who knew it'd be such a tempest in a teapot? Instead of a permanent price drop on its "Premium" 20GB $350 model, it turns out that Microsoft's merely discounting that model and selling it for $300 "while supplies last."

In its place, the company says it'll sell a new 60GB version for $350, identical to the 20GB version except for the 40GB bump.

So the big question is do you go after the $50 price break for the 20GB model or spend an extra $50 and get the 60GB model? Don't you hate tough decisions? Leave us a comment and let us know what your big decision will be.

At PCWorld.com

Xbox 360 Pro at Amazon.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 3, 2008

AT&T Invests $70 Million in Content Delivery Network

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It looks like the battle to deliver media into our homes just got kicked up a notch. According to a recent article at xchangemag.com, AT&T is once again trying to take over the world. According to the article:

AT&T has added new partners and invested $70 million for its content delivery network. The goal is to fuel development of services aimed at helping companies package and deliver web content to the TV, PC and mobile device.

AT&T's Digital Media Solutions suite already includes services for content distribution and management as well as broadcast video and digital signage. The telco has teamed with software firms ExtendMedia, Qumu and Stratacache, that format and package content for streaming video, live and on-demand webcasting and the delivery of advertising.

By yearend, AT&T will complete its $70 million global CDN network infrastructure investment. In the coming months, the telco says it will work with the new software partners to provide "one-stop shopping and simplified network-based solutions to encode, deliver, manage and support video and multimedia files."

No suprise AT&T is making the move. The battle for to deliver multimedia content to consumers is getting ready to heat up and that's great news for consumers.

At xchangemag.com

AT&T Press Release

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

May 19, 2008

Revision3 Coming to DivX Connected Devices To Replace Stage 6


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We have been playing around with the D-Link DSM-330 for awhile now and we have been very impressed with all that it offers. One thing that we were really enjoying was the ability to view all of the nice high-def videos offered by the Stage6 website. Unfortunately the site was shutdown because of funding issues. This left a big hole in the DivX Connected platform in our opinion because one of the great parts of the software was the interface they had developed into the web. The ability to view HD content via the web and have it seem like it is coming from your local network was amazing. We watched a ton of content from National Geographic and we never felt like it was some crappy web video. The quality made it look like it was just another TV program and not a streamed web movie.

Well it seems that DivX is working very hard to get the web content section of their software back up to snuff. They just recently announced a partnership with Revision3 to become their new main high quality content site. This should make most people pretty happy and offer a decent replacement for Stage6. We'll see how it pans out and if they give you the ability to login to your account( something that wasn't possible with Stage6 ). Stay tuned for our in-depth review of the DSM-330 that we should soon while you wait for Revision3 integration.
David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

May 2, 2008

Popcorn Hour A-100 Available For Public Pre-Order


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We recently got an email from our friends over at Popcorn Hour letting us know that they have opened up their ordering system to everyone. For a long time you were only able to buy a Popcorn Hour A-100 by signing up as a member and getting on their wait list. In the past this wait list was months long. Well it looks like they have been able to ramp up their manufacturing process and have enough devices to open up the ordering to everyone. It will still be a first come first serve system, so the sooner your pre-order the quicker you will receive your Popcorn Hour streamer.

We have had our Popcorn Hour A-100 in the office for awhile now and we have been really digging it. Of course it is not without its flaws, but it is one of the top streamers on the market today. And for $179 it is a total bargain. You would be hard pressed to find a HD( 1080p ) media streamer out there for under $200. So If you are in need of a new media streamer and you want to be able to stream true HD, stream over NFS and have a device from a company that is devoted to constantly improving their product, then this is the box for you. Like we said, for $179 it is a no brainer.

You can read all of our coverage of the Popcorn Hour A-100 Media Streamer here.
David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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