It's been online for a few days now, but I just spotted (via PaidContent) Forbes' article titled The iFlop (subhead: "Steve Jobs tried to design--and dictate--the future of television. Here's how he failed.") Author Scott Woolley calls the Apple TV "a flat-out" failure, claiming that it's sold less than 250,000 units in six months. Among the supposed sins of the product: the lack of a built-in DVR and a "parochial and proprietary approach" to online video content. He also highlights a variety of on-demand video competitors, including Vudu, TiVo (via Amazon Unbox), and Xbox 360 (which offers rentals and sales of TV shows via the Xbox Live Marketplace)--while glossing over many of their shortcomings. Still, is he right? Is the Apple TV dead in the water? … Read more
Networking companies are beginning to deliver the new Vista-friendly Media Center Extenders that Microsoft outlined earlier this month. D-Link's entry in the race is the DSM-750. Like competing models, the DSM-750 attaches to a TV (standard or high-def) and streams live and recorded TV, video, music, and photos from networked Media Center PCs located elsewhere in the home. An update of the older DSM-520, the 2007 model adds dual-band 802.11n wireless (which has the speed and bandwidth for optimal streaming of HD video) as well as compatibility with the popular DivX and XviD video file formats. Unlike similarly … Read more
FOSTER CITY, Calif.--Some of Sling Media's peers and competitors applauded the company a day after word came that it had been acquired by EchoStar Commmunications for $380 million.
At the IPTV World conference here, attendees said they were happy to see a fellow Silicon Valley company striking pay dirt. Many of them also said they owned a Slingbox, the hardware that beams shows from a home TV to anywhere in the world an owner might be.
"This is an excellent outcome for the Sling Media guys who really executed well," said Ward Williams, vice president of … Read more
On arriving in the office this morning, we were greeted with a pleasant surprise in our inbox: an invitation to join the BBC iPlayer open beta, which starts today. We didn't waste any time in getting stuck in. Although anyone can sign up, the number of people who will be allowed to join is being controlled by the Beeb to ensure the whole service doesn't collapse in on itself.
Getting into the system is reasonably easy, once you get your invitation. The first step involves accessing the password-protected beta area. Once in, you must register a username and … Read more
Sun Microsystems said Wednesday that AT&T plans to use its Sun Fire servers and storage arrays to power its Internet Protocol television service, called U-Verse.
The deal is significant for Sun because it could be a foot in the door to eventually sell AT&T its new, advanced Sun Streaming System, which includes Sun Fire servers and other technology that can be used to stream 160,000 simultaneous IP video … Read more
CHICAGO--Verizon's CTO Mark Wegleitner addressed a room full of reporters here Monday night on the eve of the NXTComm telecom tradeshow. During his brief talk, which followed a heavy meal of porterhouse steaks and veal chops at the famed Gibson's Steakhouse, he gave a glimpse into some new features and functionality that will soon be coming to the company's Fios, all-fiber network.
Here are some of the highlights:
Fios on speed: Verizon is already in the process of upgrading its Fios network to a technology called GPON or gigabit passive optical network, which will quadruple the … Read more
Microsoft said Monday that's it's revamped its IPTV software, now called MediaRoom. In a feature published Monday on CNET News.com, I've already gone into some depth about what the new software offers and what it means for the telco TV market.
But I also wanted to point out an important feature the new software doesn't offer: multiroom DVR. This service would be a dream come true for me. Even though I've got three TVs in my tiny apartment in New York City, my roommate and I still fight over the TV in the living … Read more
Can you make a server sexy?
Short answer: No.
But you can still throw it a glitzy launch party.
Over the past week or so, I've been poking my head into various events at the Tribeca Film Festival in lower Manhattan, which runs through tomorrow. I've always thought of film festivals as sort of low-tech affairs, and in a lot of ways, it's true--at a screening of Edward Burns' new flick, Purple Violets, the producers apologized for the first reel being "too light," and at the premiere of Spider-Man 3 co-star James Franco's latest … Read more