Chromecast currently only supports a limited number of apps, but many more could be available soon, thanks to Google getting ready to release the Google Cast SDK. Read more »
Al Jazeera’s AJ+ is an ambitious attempt to produce news for a generation that doesn’t watch news networks on TV anymore. Here’s a first behind-the-scenes look. Read more »
Hola, Elmo: Hulu added a number of new shows to its Hulu Plus kids section Thursday, including episodes of the Sesame Street in English and Spanish, as well as shows like Strawberry Shortcake, Bob the Builder, Bratz and Angelina Ballerina. All of the content is on a non-exclusive basis, meaning that you’ll likely recognize much of it from Netflix — but it’s nonetheless interesting that Hulu is continuing to invest in kids content, which seems to be working well for all online services. And adding Spanish-language titles to the mix is an interesting twist. Hulu launched its Latino offering in late 2011, and has since struck a number of deals to get content for its Spanish-speaking audience.
Sports fans just got another way to keep up with their favorite teams: ESPN has completely revamped its ScoreCenter app, and is now calling it SportsCenter. Read more »
Intel is getting ready to sell its yet-to-be-launched OnCue TV service, and Verizon is emerging as the most likely buyer. Read more »
Good news for everyone lining up to get an Xbox One: Microsoft’s new game console will have a YouTube app available at launch, after all. YouTube announced the app on its blog Wednesday, explaining that it will make use of both voice and gesture control, and showing that it’s otherwise pretty much the same as any other recent connected TV app implementations of YouTube. Earlier this week, it briefly looked like neither the Xbox One nor Sony’s PS4 would have a YouTube app at launch, but it appears that Microsoft got the job done just in time. In other words: Sony, the ball is in your court.
HBO Nordic isn’t getting much love in Sweden, where a recent survey found Netflix more than ten times as popular. Read more »
The Xbox One promises to combine state-of-the-art video gaming with live TV and streaming apps. Check out or hands-on video for a closer look at the device’s entertainment offerings. Read more »
Rdio may have tripled the number of new sign-ups this year, but the company still laid off a reported 35 people Tuesday to cut costs. Read more »
Apple TV users just got another option to watch Antiques Roadshow: PBS launched an app on Apple’s streaming box Tuesday, promising access to “thousands of hours of your favorite PBS programming.” But don’t expect whole seasons of Downton Abbey: Amazon got an exclusive for that show, which means that episodes only show up “for a limited window following the on-air broadcast,” according to a statement given to AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka. Also new on Apple TV: An app for Yahoo Screen, Yahoo’s very own video portal.
YouTube became inaccessible on the web as well as on mobile and connected devices since a little after 2pm PT Monday, but came back around 30 minutes later. Read more »
Sling rolled out a number of new features to its retail customers Monday — but how will the company’s technology fare once it’s adopted by cable operators with their convoluted TV Everywhere rules? Read more »
Video chatting could soon get a whole lot easier — if only the major browser makers could agree on a common standard. So what’s WebRTC, and why are folks still fighting about it? Read more »
Much like detective Linden, Netflix just can’t let go: The streaming service just revealed that it has renewed crime drama The Killing for a final, six-episode fourth season. This is actually the second time for Netflix to save The Killing: AMC canceled the show after season two in 2012, but Netflix stepped in and partnered with the network for a third season that didn’t get any better ratings, prompting AMC once again to axe the show this year. However, all three seasons remain available on Netflix, where they have apparently performing well enough to warrant the investment. There’s no word yet on when the fourth season will come to Netflix, but it will once again be released in bulk, and available to all Netflix subscribers worldwide.
Google is looking to hire people to bring Chromecast abroad, and a leak hints at an impending launch of HBO Go support. Read more »
Comcast plans to launch a digital download store for movies and TV shows by the end of the year, according to Reuters. The cable operators plans to offer videos for sale on its website as well as through its cable boxes, presumably to offer subscribers access to more fare than its existing VOD service has in stock. For the studios, this would be another way to push people towards buying digital movies – but is anyone really interested in owning a movie anymore?
Shelby.tv launched an app, then shut it down, then launched another app too late… now it’s back with yet another iteration. Is third time a charm for the social video startup? Read more »
Roku just turned AOL On into its default news source, adding videos right to its home screen. But are such exclusive partnerships really good for consumers and publishers? Read more »
SoundCloud celebrated its fifth birthday Wednesday, and the Berlin-based startup marked the occasion by revealing an interesting usage data point: SoundCloud users now upload twelve hours of audio every minute, according to a blog post penned by the company’s CEO Alex Ljung. That’s impressive, but also shows that audio still isn’t as ubiquitous as video on the web. To compare, YouTube surpassed 13 hours of video uploads per minute a little more than two years after its launch. Nowadays, people upload more than 100 hours of video per minute to the service.
The major pay TV operators have lost a total of 113,000 customers during their last quarter, according to new numbers from independent research firm MoffettNathanson, by the way of the Los Angeles Times. Time Warner Cable took the biggest hit, losing more than 300,000 subscribers thanks to its retransmission fight with CBS. Most of those were absorbed by DISH, DirecTV and At&T, but some decided to cut the cord entirely. It’s worth noting that Craig Moffet long questioned whether cord cutting even existed. This week, his research note said that “the pay-TV industry has reported its worst 12-month stretch ever.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger is not the only fan of YouTube Capture: The app is now used for a third of all YouTube uploads from iOS devices. That’s why YouTube added some updates. Read more »
Netflix is bringing a completely revamped UI to smart TVs and connected devices – and it moved away from Webkit and HTML5 to bring the same features to less powerful devices. Read more »
Google is getting ready to search all your apps. Publishers could benefit, but Samsung may not be too happy about the move. Read more »
Move over, cat videos: More than a third of all YouTube view time can be attributed to videos that are 20 minutes or longer. Read more »
Hulu is looking to partner with pay TV operators to offer Hulu Plus as a bundle or add-on to a pay TV subscription, reports the Wall Street Journal. Talks with operators like Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cox are still in early stages, according to the paper, but Hulu hopes to eventually have its service included on set-top boxes and become a kind of one-stop-shop for the industry’s authenticated catch-up TV offerings.
ESPN and Disney channel shows are coming to Roku – but to watch it, you’re going to need a pay TV subscription with the right TV provider. Read more »
ISPs who use Netflix’s Open Connect caching appliances have fewer slow-downs during prime time, the company argues. Read more »
Netflix continues to be by far the biggest source for residential internet traffic in North America, and the company is starting to have an impact on Europe’s ISPs as well. Read more »
This week’s IETF meeting in Vancouver has ended without a decision on a mandatory video codec for WebRTC, the proposed standard for real-time voice and video communication. Browser makers, videoconferencing equipment manufacturers and chipset vendors had hoped to finally agree on whether H.264 or VP8 should become the default codec for WebRTC, and Cisco had even mounted an eleventh-hour push, getting Mozilla to agree to implement H.264 — but in the end, no consensus was reached in what I’ve been told was an at times testy meeting.
Ex-Hulu CEO Jason Kilar must really miss his former co-workers. Why else would he keep hiring people away from Hulu? Read more »
Spotify is closing in on another $200 million in funding from Technology Crossover Ventures, a VC firm that previously backed Facebook, Netflix and Groupon, according to a report from Sky News. Spotify previously raised $288 million, and recent reports indicate that the new funding could value the company at $5.75 billion. Spotify said in March that it had 6 million paying subscribers and 24 million active users.
Simple.tv will start selling its second-generation DVR for cord cutters in December – but it’s getting competition from a similar device called Tablo. Read more »
Blockbuster going out of business isn’t just about Netflix winning over DVD rentals — it’s about the end of movies as a product. Read more »
Netflix teamed up with Disney for a super-powered original content deal that will bring more than four TV new exclusive TV shows to the service. Read more »
Samsung wants to provide services that connect its devices across the home. To do so, it’s taking a really close look at what people are really doing with its stuff. Read more »
Autodesk has invested $10 million in Deviantart, a digital art community that has been around for 13 years. Read more »
Second-screen startup i.TV has bought its better-known, but not that much more popular rival GetGlue. i.TV announced the transaction Wednesday, and Variety is reporting that the deal was all stock, and “far less than the $24 million GetGlue had raised from investors.” The acquisition continues a trend of consolidation in the second-screen space that now also has network executives question the value of these kinds of apps.
Comcast is offering broadband, local channels and HBO for $40 a month – but Time Warner’s CEO isn’t worried. Maybe because the sticker price isn’t what you end up paying. Read more »
Technologists tend to forget that normal people have a different take on technology. That’s why they should pay more attention to interfaces. Read more »
There are good movies, there are bad movies, and there’s Sharknado. Missed the trashiest but also most-tweeted-about movie of 2013 when it aired on Syfy in July? No worries, Netflix is giving you another chance to experience it on your own time. Just please, stop tweeting about it.