Categories
Apple iPhone iPod Media Random Tech

Notes from the iPhone 3.0 Event

Highlights:

  1. Developers will be allowed to create turn-by-turn GPS apps.
  2. Push Notifications are actually coming.
  3. Copy and Paste
  4. MMS
  5. Search throughout most of the OS.
  6. Notes syncing
  7. Free for iPhone owners
  8. $10 for iPod Touch owners

Notes and reactions from yesterdays iPhone 3.0 event:

  • 30 million iPod Touch and iPhone. That’s a lot of devices.
  • In app purchases sounds like a great way to spend a lot of money frivolously.
  • Only allowing for pay apps to use in app purchases is incredibly smart.
  • I wonder what happens if I uninstall an app that I have purchases content for. Will I be able to redownload that content for free?
  • Peer to Peer is a wonderful solution to the impossible to solve problem of playing multiplayer games while in the car or somewhere without Wifi.
  • Developers are now allowed to access accessories through the dock connector. It seems Apple has been listening.
  • Oh, snap Turn-by-turn GPS!
  • Push notifications are actually coming, they had to be rearchitected, I don’t know why they didn’t expect so many people to be interested in it.
  • The Sims looks great, but what happened to Need for Speed? Shouldn’t that be done by now?
  • ESPN used their familiar sound effect for their notifications, I’m getting more excited about Push Notifications as the minutes go on.
  • Not surprisingly there has been no mention of EDGE when talking about the video streaming features. I wonder if they can scale the video down to the point where it streams nicely over EDGE (I doubt it).
  • I’m very worried that developers will go in app purchase crazy. A $5 app should cost $5, not $5 plus $1 every time you want to play another couple of levels.
  • Copy and Paste looks easy enough to use but I’m worred about how the double tap to zoom will interact with the double tap to copy/paste, it could get confusing. Also, I don’t see a cancel button, is there a way to?
  • I hate the landscape keyboard, and I will only be more frustrated by the accelerometer activating when I’m laying down and using my iPhone.
  • Advancements in the messaging app are going to be very well recieved. MMS has been needed since day one and it is amazing that it has taken this long.
  • Voice Memos will be just another icon on my homescreen that I wish could go away.
  • Does anybody actually use the stocks app?
  • Search coming to Mail (thank you), iPod, Notes, and a new Spotlight homepage, to the left of other homepages, it is a universal search. I may never use this, but it looks cool, and demos real well.
  • Notes syncing, I’ve been waiting for this for a long time, I was hoping for this more than copy and paste, now all those Notes on my iPhone aren’t going to be sitting in a black hole.
  • Stereo Bluetooth, for those who use it.
  • Auto-fill coming to Safari, no more typing in those long passwords.
  • parade rain, MMS and stereo bluetooth won’t be coming to the original iPhone.
  • Free upgrade for iPhone owers, $10 for iPod Touch.

Apple – QuickTime – iPhone OS 3.0 Preview Presentation

iPhone 3.0 Copy and Paste

iPhone 3.0 Messages

iPhone 3.0 Spotlight

iPhone 3.0 iTunes Options

Images above from AppleInsider

Categories
Apple Media Rumor

March 24 Apple Event May Still Be On

World Of Apple and My Apple Guide previously broke that Apple would be holding a media event on March 24. Although the rumored announcements for the March 24 event have already happened (Mac Minis, Mac Pros, iMacs, etc.) it is possible that two rumors might have been a little mixed and a March 24 event might still be in the works.

Sevenmac.de is sourcing an anonymous tip suggesting that the March 24 event would be used for Apple pro video applications.

I find it hard to believe that Apple would use a media event to announce new pro video applications but then again since Apple isn’t attending NAB anymore (the natural place for such an announcement) it may seem logical that the features in these apps would warrent a demo, at least to the type of media that would be interested in such applicaitons.

Categories
Linked List Media

Netflix to Stream Episodes of South Park

I stopped by the studio to talk to Mr. Stone because he had some news: the two men and their partner Comedy Central had consummated a deal with Netflix to stream the first nine seasons of “South Park.”

I really hope Netflix ends up streaming new episodes as well. But, I’ve almost lost hope of Netflix getting any fresh content that I am at all interested in.

The Media Equation – Far-Sighted Moves by Creators of ‘South Park’ – NYTimes.com.

Categories
Application Beta Cell Phones Mac OS X Media Video

DoubleTwist is Now Available

DoubleTwist

DoubleTwist is a universal media hub that is now available as a public beta for Mac OS X. DoubleTwist is like iTunes except it works with not just iPhones and iPods but also with other portable media players.

Not only will DoubleTwist transfer the media to your player for you but it is also capable of converting nearly any video format to the correct format for your device.

The only thing I would suggest to the developers of DoubleTwist is that I don’t want to have to drag and drop media to my device, I would rather set a list of parameters based on ratings, how recent it was last played, etc. and have DoubleTwist transfer it for me. Essentially I want a true iTunes alternative.

doubleTwist.

Categories
Linked List Media Photos

The Pirate Bay, Remember When…

The Pirate Bay, Remember When...

The cartoon above (click to enlarge) is absolutely perfect, it clearly explains why we can’t let these large media companies convince our government that their business is more important than our human rights.

Download music, movies, games, software! The Pirate Bay – The world’s largest BitTorrent tracker.

Categories
Apple Home Theater Media

Understudy Allows You to Stream Hulu and Netflix Through Front Row

I haven’t played around with Understudy much (it isn’t really all that good) but I have streamed some Hulu content through it. My experiences haven’t been too positive after adding a feed to Understudy I received errors and had to quit Front Row. After reopening Front Row the feed that I added (which was the Family Guy show feed) was still there but was named “Hulu Feed,” I could rename it but I probably shouldn’t need to. The video streamed fine but it wasn’t exactly full screen, there were black bars across the top and bottom, which isn’t ideal.

I didn’t spend any time with Netflix content but 9 to 5 Mac confirms that the streaming does work but you have to be logged into Netflix through Safari.

The fact is that if you want a simple 10 foot interface for watching Hulu and Netflix content this is a great option, especially if you already have a Mac Mini contected to an HDTV or if you have an iMac in your bedroom. But, it will take a while to set up and won’t give you the best experience, but since (from what I’ve seen out there) every other option involves either a special box (like the Roku Netflix streaming box) or a pay per episode system (like with iTunes) Understudy might be your best bet if you don’t want to drop a lot of cash.

understudy – Google Code

Stream Netflix and Hulu into Frontrow using ‘understudy’ | 9 to 5 Mac.

Categories
Media

Netflix Passes 10 Million Subscribers

Netflix Logo

Everyones favorite DVD rental service Netflix has surpassed 10 million subscribers. This number was reached by the company adding more than 600,000 subscribers since the first of the year.

Don’t be surprised to see Netflix continue to grow at nearly this rate going forward, especially with consumer confidence being where it is. I see a lot of consumers choosing to use Netflix instead of cable service, not only is it cheaper but with all of the streaming options out there (like the XBox 360) customers can watch what they want, when they want, for a good price.

Netflix Passes 10 Million Subscribers « NewTeeVee.

Categories
Media

New Netflix Shipping Policy

Recently I received an email from Netflix telling me that the DVD at the top of my queue wasn’t available at my local shipping center so they had sent me my next available DVD but also sent the DVD that wasn’t available from the next closest shipping center. So essentially I got a complimentary DVD from Netflix.

I then did some searching around on Netflix’s site to see if there was any mention of this (since it has never happened to me before) and found out that the new policy began on December 11, 2008.

“Now, if your first choice is not available in your local shipping center, we immediately send the next locally available movie in your Queue. And whenever possible, we also send your first choice from another of our 55 shipping centers throughout the U.S. When this happens, you end up with a complimentary extra DVD rental.”

So, you’re probably trying to figure out how Netflix will deal with that extra DVD you have and it’s very simple, Netflix will send you your next DVD after you return any two movies.

Just one more example of why Netflix is such a great company.

The Official Netflix Blog: New DVD shipping process.

Categories
Apple Application Cell Phones iPhone iPod Linked List Media Random Tech Rumor

Apple May Allow Background Apps in Firmware 3.0

“While we aren’t sure what the specific issues are, we’ve heard that as an alternative Apple is considering allowing apps to run as user selectable background processes. If so, this feature would likely come in the rumored iPhone 3.0 software update but would be limited to only one or two processes on current hardware. The next generation iPhone, however, would likely see less restricted background process support due to its improved hardware.”

So if it is user selectable I wonder if Apple will require developers to (if they want to have a background app) allow users to choose whether they want it running the background when closed and if not the app will save whatever your doing when the home button is pressed.

This seems like a very viable solution and I’ve often wondered why Apple didn’t just have a limit on the number of apps you can have running in the background at a time. 2 Would probably be a good number of apps and the way they would be selected would be just to have the most recent two apps that were opened be the background apps.

Apple to Allow Background Tasks on iPhone? – Mac Rumors.

Categories
IPTV Media

Would You Pay Netflix $9.99 to Stream HBO Content?

Netflix HBO Content Survey

Netflix sent a survey to some of their customers asking if they would be willing to pay an extra $9.99 per month to stream HBO shows through Netflix’s Watch Instantly feature.

The shows listed in the survey are:

  • Big Love
  • The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency
  • Flight of the Concords
  • Eastbound & Down
  • Entourage
  • Summer Heights High
  • In Treatment
  • Little Britain USA
  • Real Time with Bill Maher
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm
  • The Life & Times of Tim
  • Sex and the City
  • The Sopranos
  • The Wire
  • Def Comedy Jam
  • Rome
  • Deadwood
  • Extras
  • Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry
  • Six Feet Under
  • Da Ali G Show

I personally wouldn’t pay an extra $10 to watch any of the shows above, not just because I’m not interested in any of those shows, but also because I don’t stream over Netflix that often. In the entire time that Netflix streaming has been available I’ve only watched one movie with it. I just don’t really enjoy sitting in front of my computer watching long form content and I’m also not willing to pay $100 or more for a device with Netflix streaming built in.

But, this idea got me thinking that Netflix could become the premier IPTV service. If they could charge you an extra $30-50 would you pay to be able to stream practically all of the content that is available to you from your cable company? Although the quality might not be as good it is an on demand service in which you pick what you want to see in your “channel linup” (or your queue in Netflix’s instance). I’ve talked before about the IPTV Dream in which you could order service from anyone in the world and since the delivery mechanism is there (your internet access) it didn’t matter your physical location or you IPTV providers location you could order from whoever you wanted. I just wonder if Netflix is heading towards that goal, towards that dream of a huge selection of media where there is something for everyone and for one low price you can watch as much as you like.

I leave you with two questions to ponder (or comment below about).

Would you pay $9.99 for HBO content?
and
Do you think Netflix will be the Vonage of IPTV?

Hacking NetFlix : Netflix Survey: Would You Pay an Additional $9.99 Per Month for HBO Shows?.

Categories
Apple Apple TV Cell Phones Media Mobile Notebooks

Apple TV Sales, Mac Netbooks, and iPhone Nanos

During Apple’s latest earnings conference call Tim Cook said said that sales of the Apple TV were up 3 times what they were at the same point last year. Although they still describe the Apple TV as a hobby Cook noted, “We think there’s something there.”

I’m convinced that the Apple TV was the best purchase I’ve made in the past decade when it comes to home theater gear (not including my HDTV of course) and truly believe that Apple is going to do some really interesting things with it in the coming years. But, the fact that it is selling so well is what gets me excited. I hope that some day I won’t have to explain to people what the Apple TV is when I mention it in conversation.

Apple also dismissed the idea of a low end iPhone in the same earnings call saying “We’re not going to play in the low end voice phone business. That’s not who we are, that’s not why we’re here. Goal is not to lead unit sales, but to build the world’s best phone.”

Regarding Apple’s interest in the netbook market Cook said “we’re watching that space, but from our [point of view] the products are based on hardware that’s much less powerful, software technology that’s not good, cramped siplays. We don’t think that people are going to be pleased with those type of products. It’s a category we watch, we have some ideas here, but we think the products there now are inferior and won’t provide the kind of experience people want.”

So all indications show that Apple isn’t going to sell an iPhone Nano or a Mac Netbook, but then of course if you remember that Steve Jobs said that they never wanted to have a video iPod and now one of the best features of the flagship iPod is video playback.

Apple reports record profit for first quarter | Macworld.

Categories
Linked List Media

CBS Tries to Out-Hulu Hulu with TV.com

As was expected, CBS is revamping TV.com to be a video-viewing destination. The well-URLed site, which six months ago started featuring Hulu content, has added CBS shows, and Monday is announcing deals for shows from MGM, Sony, PBS, Endemol USA and Showtime, according to reports tonight.

CBS Tries to Out-Hulu Hulu with TV.com « NewTeeVee.