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October 3, 2015


BBC to broadcast live TV over the internet

by Brad Linder, posted Jun 5th 2008 7:03PM
UK residents can already watch any show that's aired on the BBC over the last 7 days using the broadcast service's iPlayer software. Now the BBC plans to go one step further by offering a live stream of BBC One content on the internet.

The new service will be available sometime in the next few months and will be available only to viewers in the UK. You'll also need a broadband connection and you'll have to pay the same £139.50 annual license fee that you pay to watch television in the UK.

Critics have complained that it will be difficult for the BBC to make sure that viewers are actually paying their license fee, which means that television owners could wind up subsidizing free content for people who watch programs on their computers but do not own a TV. Right now there's not a huge number of people trading in their televisions for computers, but then there are aren't very many TV stations providing all of their content for free over the internet.

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TV and movie downloads coming to the PS3?

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 16th 2008 3:06PM
Sony Playstation3Sony has always claimed that the PlayStation3 is more than a video game console. It's a multimedia center. While the PlayStation2 helped spur the adoption of DVDs, the PlayStation3 sports a Blu-ray drive for viewing high definition videos.

You can also connect a PS3 to the internet to download media. But while you can get games online, the PlayStation store isn't currently focused on media like TV and movies. But that could soon change. Sony VP Peter Dille writes on the PlayStation Blog that the company will be "offering a video service for the PS3" that's different from any other service out there. Enigmatic? Yes. Still good news? Seems like.

It's not clear at this point if Dille is talking about streaming video or a download service. Would it be free, ad-supported, pay-per download or subscription?

I'm not placing too much stock in the whole unlike "others you've seen or used" bit. That just sounds like promotional hype to me. But this is the first time I'm aware of that we've gotten word from near the top indicating that Sony is planning a video download service.

[via CNet]

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Hulu going international -- eventually

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 11th 2008 5:39PM
Hulu International
Hulu is almost the online video site I've been waiting for for years. It features a broad selection of content that's actually worth watching from major networks and studios. The video quality is pretty good. If the company could sign a few more partners and start posting entire seasons, not just a few episodes at a time, I'd be in heaven.

But that's because I live in the US. For TV fans in any other part of the world, Hulu is a non-starter. When you try to visit the page from another country you're typically greeted with an error message. But this morning Emily Turretini of WatchingTV Online discovered that she got a new message telling her that Hulu is working on "legal and business" deals to bring the service to other countries.

Users can also sign up to receive an email alert as soon as Hulu is available in their area.

[via NewTeeVee]

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Blockbuster to launch a set top box for streaming video

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 10th 2008 5:38PM
BlockbusterTired of looking at that empty spot next to your TiVo, Windows Media Extender, Apple TV, and Xbox 360? Blockbuster's got just the thing -- another set top box capable of streaming internet and downloaded video.

There aren't many details about the box yet, but Blockbuster is reportedly set to announce it later this month. The box will offer hardware to compliment software the company already owns. Blockbuster acquired Movielink last year. The service provides users with the ability to rent or purchase digital movies which can be downloaded to a computer.

But PVR Wire readers aside, most people don't have their televisions connected to their computers, so a set top box seems like a good idea. You know, until you count up the other set top boxes you've got lying around. As Dave Zatz points out, it would probably make a lot more sense for Blockbuster to develop technology that would allow the company to send video to existing devices like a TiVo, video game console, or even a network enabled DVD player.

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Blinkx releases internet video player with speech recognition

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 2nd 2008 10:08AM
Blinkx BBTV
Online video service Blinkx has decided to take on Joost, Babelgum, Vuze, Miro, and VeohTV by launching a non-browser based internet video player. Blinkx Broadband TV looks like a run of the mill internet video browser at first. It's got pretty decent video quality and a pretty sparse collection of videos, made up of independent films, video podcasts, and movie trailers.

But there's one thing that sets Blinkx BBTV apart. It uses Blinkx's speech recognition technology, allowing you to click on a dialog button to bring up a list of lines spoken in the video. Click on a line of dialog and you'll jump to that point in the video. This feature isn't available in every video at the moment, but it is kind of nifty, and gives you a lot more control over your navigation than you'd typically get from internet video, or even a DVD chapter menu.

You can also pull up IMDB pages with with more information about the actors, directors, genres, and other movie metadata without launching an external browser, which is pretty cool. Again, this feature isn't available for all videos.

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BBC could bring iPlayer content to the Apple TV

by Brad Linder, posted Jan 17th 2008 5:53PM
If there's one thing I love more than the ability to watch TV shows online it's the ability to watch them on my TV. So while it's great that the BBC's iPlayer service lets UK viewers catch up on shows they've missed over the week using their computers, I'm pretty excited to hear that the broadcasting service is looking at ways to get the software onto set top boxes.

BBC Future Media and Technology Director Ashley Highfield writes on his blog that the BBC is encouraged by this week's announcement that Apple TV users will be able to download content directly to their set top boxes, no computer required. It's probably safe to say the BBC will be in touch with Apple soon.

But Highfield says the BBC is also looking into other ways to get content onto the TV, such as the Xbox 360 or the Neuros OSD. So far, the iPlayer service has only been available to UK viewers. But as the BBC expands the service, I'm holding out hope that they'll offer up a subscription or pay-per-download version for viewers in the rest of the world.

[via last100]

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D-Link adds 200 channels of online video to MediaLounge devices

by Brad Linder, posted Sep 27th 2007 10:00AM
D-Link ActiveTV
Looking for a way to view online video on your TV without dropping $350 on a newfangled "version 2" Windows media center extender? D-Link's DSM-520 media streamer costs more than a hundred bucks less than its newer sibling, and all you have to sacrifice is Windows Vista Media Center support.

What that means is you can plug the DSM-520 into your TV and stream video from your networked PC or from the internet. You just can't peruse your Windows Media Center menus.

But starting next Thursday, you'll be able to watch more than 200 "channels" of online video. D-Link is planning on releasing a firmware upgrade on October 4th that will enable "active-TV technology" on DSM-520 boxes. The service will include 200 channels with content from popular TV networks and online video sites like Comedy Central, MovieLink, VH1, Reuters, and the BBC. You can also add your own online video sources, which you can then navigate using a remote control and 10-foot interface.

Microsoft is expected to launch an internet TV section for Windows Vista Media Center users today. But D-Link's free internet video service might be a good alternative if you're not planning on buying a new home theater PC anytime soon.

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