3D TV Future Relies on Sports
I totally agree with the reporter. The technology and content are not ready. Now are we going to be in the same situation as with cameras on cell phone ? Try to find a cell phone with no camera today ... After wall, 3D is really just a firmware upgrade.
Published: Thursday, 11 Nov 2010 | 12:34 PM ET Text Size
By: Darren Rovell
CNBC Sports Business Reporter
I had just built my beautiful new man cave and it was time to decide what TV would make the cut. I was willing to pay some good money, as I needed it to be something that would have some sort of "wow" factor.
The salesman convinced me that 3D was the way to go. It was only $499 more than a similar TV I was considering. Sure, I'd have to pay $250 for the glasses, but what's $749 more? It was a good insurance policy, he said. And the best part? Today's 3D TV's are the best HD TV's as well, so it was a win-win, especially if I loved sports. With a faster refresh rate, a football wouldn't ever be fuzzy as it floated through the air.
I had seen 3D sports in the theatre and at times I was moderately impressed. I watched it in the store to get the "at home" feel for about 10 minutes. And, at the end of the day, I went home with the best HD TV I could find. The fact that a junkie like me made that decision for a mancave that I had already invested heavily in is a bad sign for 3D.
My fellow Americans are feeling the same way.
Apple: 450K Beatles LPs In 7 Days
I still don't understand why Apple has made such a big deal of carrying the Beatle's catalog. And want to make this a milest
(From Barron's 11/23/2010)
By Tiernan Ray
The Guardian’s James Robinson reports EMI has sold over 450,000 Beatles albums on Apple’s (AAPL) iTunes in the seven days since Apple made the band’s records available online.
Robinson cites an EMC “insider” saying it was “a pretty amazing achievement.” Robinson notes only one song made the U.K.’s top-40 list for the week, Hey Jude, while the “red” and “blue” albums were the only Beatles LPs in the charts this week. Industry folk wonder if the re-releases might have done better with a staggered release.
I think what's shocking is the rate of conversion - I think that even Netflix has been surprised about how fast US consumers are switching from DVD to streaming. And the good thing is that it's not geek free stuff like boxee and google tv - it's real long form, pay content. Awesome.
( Article below Reproduced from Associated Press 11/23/2010)
( Author: Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer, On Monday November 22, 2010, 9:23 pm EST)
Tipping point? Netflix offers cheaper Internet-streaming plan to wean subscribers from DVDs
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Netflix is preparing for the day when getting DVDs by mail is as old-fashioned as going to the video store. It's hoping to wean people from DVDs with a cheap plan that offers movies and old TV episodes exclusively through online streaming. It will cost $8 per month, matching a recent price cut by rival Hulu.
So should you get rid of your DVD player? Maybe not yet. But it might be a good time to make sure your television can connect to the Internet.
Most analysts expect the streaming-only plan to appeal to younger subscribers, especially those who have signed up for Netflix in the past couple years as the service became available through video game consoles. To them, the new price will probably seem like a bargain: Netflix had been charging $9 per month for the lowest-priced plan that included unlimited video streaming.
At the same time, Netflix is making it more expensive to receive those familiar red envelopes in the mail. The company is trying to offset its postage expenses and bring more money to improve the quality of its Internet streaming library.
The monthly rates on Netflix's three most popular rental plans will rise $1 to $3, depending on the plan. They will be $10, $15 and $20, depending on how many DVDs the subscriber is allowed to have out at once.
The changes announced Monday are Netflix's latest step to ensure it doesn't repeat the same mistakes of Blockbuster Inc., a once-ubiquitous video store chain that didn't adapt quickly enough to technological change and went bankrupt.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings says he always envisioned movies being piped through high-speed connections -- even back in 1999, when his company began mailing out DVD rentals requested on the Web. That expectation is why Hastings says he chose the name Netflix.
But the transition has come more quickly than Hastings had thought. When Netflix added Internet streaming as a free supplement to its DVD plans in early 2007, Hastings assured analysts DVDs would remain the primary way Netflix's subscribers watched movies for at least the next decade.
That changed as it became possible to stream Netflix's service through game consoles, Blu-ray players and set-top boxes that are easy to hook up to TVs. Netflix also is streaming on more mobile devices, including the iPad.
Now, Netflix says its 17 million subscribers watch more hours of Internet-streamed video each month than they do on the DVDs they get through the mail.
Even so, Netflix remains a major buyer of DVDs because most of its subscribers still want the discs. That way they can watch the latest movie releases that aren't available for streaming.
The company doesn't specify how many DVDs it ships out each month, but Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter estimates the average Netflix subscriber still gets four to five DVDs per month. That's down from an average of five to six a year ago.
In a way, the move to streaming mirrors what's happening in the newspaper industry. While tens of millions still subscribe to print editions, that audience is getting older and shrinking. Younger readers get their news on computers and other digital devices.
Pachter expects DVDs to be around for at least 20 more years. Netflix itself has projected that its DVD-by-mail shipments will peak in 2012 and then progressively decline until they become infinitesimal around 2030.
Meanwhile, subscribers are expected to watch progressively more hours through the Internet. The convenience and perceived value of streaming is the main reason Netflix's total subscribers have nearly doubled in the past two years.
Netflix Inc. is getting more popular on Wall Street, too. Its stock is worth nine times what it was two years ago and rose to another record high Monday. The shares gained $15.28, or nearly 9 percent, to close at $188.32.
Investors love streaming because it should help Netflix make more money. The simple math: The more people stream, the less the company will have to devote to buying DVDs and getting them to customers. This year, for instance, Netflix is expected to spend more than $700 million on postage and handling.
And streaming will make it easier for Netflix to expand into other countries without having to invest in the dozens of DVD distribution centers it has set up in the U.S. By some estimates, more than 500 million households worldwide are equipped with high-speed Internet connections, and that number is expected to grow in the years to come.
As Netflix's postage and DVD expenses decline, the company is pouring more money into licensing movies and TV shows for its Internet streaming library.
The streaming catalog is still mostly made up of older movies and TV shows at least a season or two behind. Netflix is trying to freshen that lineup. During the summer, it cut a series of deals that will narrow the time between when movies reach the theater screens and Netflix's streaming library.
All told, Netflix's commitments for streaming rights totaled $1.1 billion as of Sept. 30, up from $115 million at the end of last year.
No matter how much Netflix invests, the streaming library probably still won't have as much new material as pay TV and DVDs offer. That is largely because the studios still think they can pad their profits by selling DVDs. As part of that goal, several major studios have persuaded Netflix to refrain from renting many popular DVDs during the first 28 days the discs are on sale in stores.
Sales and rentals of DVDs and Blu-ray discs fell 7 percent to $10.9 billion in the first nine months of this year compared to last year, according to The Digital Entertainment Group, an industry body. Meanwhile, Internet downloads rose 37 percent to $432 million.
Netflix's popularity is also turning it into a threat to pay-TV, including long-established premium cable channels, such as HBO and Starz. Time Warner Inc.'s HBO so far has refused to license classic TV shows such as "The Sopranos" and "Deadwood" to Netflix.
The total number of cable and satellite pay-TV subscribers in the U.S. fell for the first time ever in this year's second quarter, according to analyst estimates. Cable companies attributed the decline to seasonal and economic weakness rather than people cutting the cord in favor of Internet video, but the total subscriber figure declined again in the third quarter.
Netflix's streaming ambitions could suffer a setback if the cable and telecommunications companies that provide high-speed Internet service attempt to impose surcharges on heavy users of Web video.
Streaming through Netflix accounts for more than 20 percent of peak traffic to Internet users in the U.S., according to a recent report by Sandvine Inc.
Attempts by Internet service providers to apply extra fees on customers who use a lot of data have so far been quashed by consumer backlashes, and Hastings is betting extra fees won't become a hurdle for Internet video. But that doesn't mean the cost of high-speed Internet service won't rise if people get hooked on video streaming.
AP Business Writer Ryan Nakashima in Los Angeles contributed to this repor
Very significant move from ARM into connected TVs. Not sure Google is the correct partner though. (reproduced from the Wall Street Journal 111810)
ARM In Preliminary Talks With Google On Smart TV Cooperation
By Paul Mozur and Lorraine Luk
Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
TAIPEI (Dow Jones)--U.K. chip designer ARM Holdings PLC (ARM.LN) is in preliminary discussions with Google Inc. (GOOG) on a potential cooperation deal related to Google TV, ARM President Tudor Brown said Thursday.
Search giant Google earlier this year unveiled Google TV, an Internet-connected TV that allows consumers to watch and search traditional television programming and online video through one interface. The software, which will be available through a separate box or through some Internet-connected TVs made by Sony Corp. (6758.TO), is due to launch this fall. Google said in May it is cooperating with chip giant Intel Corp. (INTC) on the chips used for Google TV.
Brown refused to elaborate on what kind of cooperation is being discussed with Google.
Google spokeswoman for Taiwan and Hong Kong, Caroline Hsu, said the company doesn't comment on rumors or speculation.
Brown said he thought Google decided to use Intel processors in Google TV to get the product to the market quickly, but added "if Google is to meet the mainstream needs of the market, its televisions will need to be made with lower energy and lower cost processors."
He also said ARM's 30% share of the digital television market is growing and continues to be a point of focus for the company.
Speaking at a technology forum in Taipei, Brown said talk of the company being a takeover target "makes no sense."
ARM's chip designs are used in Apple Inc.'s (AAPL) ipad which has created a buzz for tablet PCs in the global market. Other PC makers have launched or are scheduled to sell tablet PCs to take a share of this fast-growing market.
Brown said global demand for tablet computers will remain strong next year. He said global shipments of tablet PCs will likely rise by 30 million-60 million units next year.
-By Paul Mozur and Lorraine Luk, Dow Jones Newswires; 8862-25022557;email@example.com
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