Netflix just added director’s commentary to the fist season on House of Cards, giving its subscribers the option to re-watch the political drama with audio commentary from all six season one directors, including most notably David Fincher. It’s a smart move that adds a new twist to the show in time to get people excited for season two, which is coming to the service in February. It also goes to show that original content comes with added benefits for Netflix, including the ability to add new features like this extra audio track, or the 4K resolution that Netflix will offer for season two.
An ongoing legal fight between major record labels and video hoster Vimeo could finally decide whether internet users have the right to record lib dub videos of popular songs, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The lawsuit against Vimeo is heading to appellate review, and one of the issues that is going to be explored there is the legality of lip dubs. Another question raised in a decision this week: Does a video site have knowledge of infringement if some of its employees watch an infringing video?
Gracenote is about to release a new API that will allow anyone to build their own Pandora-like personalized online radio offering. Read more »
Add YouTube to the list of companies showing off 4K streaming at CES. But YouTube’s demos will be using Google’s own VP9 video codec. Read more »
Chances are that we will see a webOS-powered LG smart TV at CES next week, and a first leak, courtesy of evleaks, already gives us an idea of how the device’s user interface could look like. The leaked image shows off live TV integration and access to a variety of apps through something that resembles the cards interface of webOS mobile devices. Some of the apps included are YouTube, Facebook and Skype, with the latter suggesting that the device will have a camera as well.
Free music streaming app Hypedmusic shut down this month after it got targeted by the RIAA for copyright infringement. Is this the start of a wider crackdown on music startups without licensing agreements? Read more »
Get ready for this: Reddit had 56 billion pageviews and 731 million unique visitors this year, according to a post published on the official Reddit blog. Possibly even more remarkable: The site had more than 40 million posts in 2013, and the most-read post only had 3.6 million pageviews, meaning that a whole lot of activity came from the long tail. Maybe Reddit should change its tagline to “the 731 million front pages of the internet”?
Starting January 6, next-day access to full episodes of ABC TV shows will be restricted to cable or Hulu Plus subscribers. Everyone else will have to wait a whole week. Read more »
P2P piracy may be less in the spotlight than it used to be, but people are still trading a whole lot of files: Data published by Torrentfreak shows that the Pirate Bay saw file uploads surge by 50 percent in 2012, despite various legal attacks against the site that forced it to change domains multiple times, and resulted in it being blocked in a number of European countries. In November of 2013 alone, 74,195 torrents were uploaded to the site. Two years ago, that number was at just 38,319. Those torrents are shared by around 19 million people at a time, according to Torrentfreak.
Once again, it’s time to watch the ball drop on Time’s Square. And if you’re not in New York, or not up for waiting in the cold, there are once again a number of options to watch all the action on the web, on your iPad or on your mobile phone. Read more »
Rdio is giving up on Vdio, its streaming video service that at one point was meant to compete with Netflix. Maybe it’s just too hard to take on the video subscription market leader? Read more »
Tribune Company is acquiring media recognition specialist Gracenote for $170 million. Read more »
Simple.tv released its Android app this past weekend, giving owners of its DVR a way to stream live and recorded TV to Android phones and tablets. Simple.tv is targeting cord cutters with a DVR that records free over-the-air digital TV and then streams it to mobile and connected devices. The company just started to sell its second-generation hardware, and is set to show off a cloud DVR offering at CES in Las Vegas next month. We first showed off Simple.tv’s Android app in a video a few weeks ago.
Learn how to play videos you recorded on your phone, customize your Chromecast, make your remote control obsolete and more with our collection of essential tricks and tips for new Chromecast owners. Read more »
Pono is a no-show at CES: Neil Young’s high-definition music service and device won’t be launching in Vegas next month. Read more »
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial was deemed one of the worst video games of all times, and legend has it that Atari buried all copies in shame. Now, Microsoft wants to dig them up. Read more »
Simple.tv will launch an app for its over-the-air DVR on Ouya devices next year. The app will bring live and recorded TV to the Android-based game console, provided that users also own Simple.tv’s networked DVR. The company announced Thursday that it will preview an app for […] Read more »
Maybe mobile shouldn’t always be first: Showyou saw huge grow after it revamped its website, which it previously ignored because of an app-centric approach. Read more »
Shazam’s new iPhone app can automatically identify any song you listen to, be it on the radio in your car, in a bar or even at the movies. Read more »
Telly may have started as a Twitter video service, but now it’s looking to become the Netflix of the Middle East. Read more »
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-18/sony-said-to-explore-sale-of-gracenote-audio-recognition-service.html Sony may be looking to sell media recognition specialist Gracenote, according to a Bloomberg report. There’s no word yet on how much money Sony is looking to make, whether the company intends to keep a stake in the unit, or even who a potential buyer […] Read more »
Viki, the international streaming video service that recently got acquired by Japan’s Rakuten, just took a big step into the Chinese market: Viki is supplying Baidu with movies and TV shows from a variety of countries including South Korea, Japan, the U.K. and the U.S., which […] Read more »
Former Apple executive Tim Bucher stealthily assembled an A-team of developers to solve personal media sharing with a company called Black Pearl Systems. Now, Bucher is coming clean and announcing the consumer brand Lyve Minds. Read more »
Al Jazeera’s AJ+ just published a first few videos on YouTube, giving us a first look at the online-only network’s take on news. Read more »
Annoyed by radio ads? You’re not alone, and you might get a break from new technology developed by Gracenote that could one day personalize radio advertising. Read more »
Five years after its launch, Roku finally gets an official YouTube channel. But for now, it’s only available on the Roku 3. Read more »
Rounds, the group video chat app we’ve covered a few times before on Gigaom, announced a partnership with Vidyo Tuesday. Rounds will use Vidyo’s technology to power the next generation of its mobile app, which will include features like video overlays while you browse a site […] Read more »
Two co-founders of TiVo want to give TV another shot. This time, their new product is all about streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. Read more »
Walther White’s lawyer is returning to the TV screen, and viewers in Europe and Latin America will get him exclusively via Netflix. Read more »
Verizon is close to inking a deal with Intel to buy the chip maker’s yet-to-be launched online TV service OnCue, according to a Bloomberg report. Intel originally planned to launch the service by the end of the year, but the company’s new CEO Brian Krzanich decided that Intel shouldn’t be in the TV business, after all. Bloomberg reports that Verizon wants to use the unit to offer TV services outside of its market footprint, but it’s still unclear how exactly such an offering would look like.
DirecTV wants to get into the online streaming race, but target niche audiences. That’s a smart move for the satellite operator. Read more »
Google wants to bring Chromecast to a number of other countries in 2014, and make casting a standard that works on multiple devices with thousands of apps. Read more »
Users are now able to launch music and movie streams from the web, just like has been possible with YouTube and Netflix since Chromecast launched. Read more »
Parents, this app wants to quantify your diaper changes. Ins & Outs is an activity tracker for babies, and it’s been built by the Janus Friis-backed product incubator The Factory. Read more »
It’s that time of the year again: YouTube stars like Freddie Wong, Toby Turner, Daily Grace, Mystery Guitar Man, Tyler Ward and a number of others are coming together Thursday night at 6pm P.T. for the site’s second annual Tube-A-Thon, a telethon-style live event that aims to raise money for charity. Just like last year, the event is going to be hosted by What’s Trending’s Shira Lazar, but this time around, it’s live streamed from YouTube’s Los Angeles studio space, which has been home to a growing number of live events this year, including YouTube’s first music awards show.
Simple.tv is getting ready to launch its cord cutting DVR in a number of international markets, and bring its mobile app to Android. Read more »
YouTube’s ad revenue is set to hit $5.6 billion this year, according to an eMarketer report relayed by the Financial Times. The same report estimates that the service’s net revenue after paying its partners is close to $2 billion, which would be significantly more than the $1.65 billion that Google paid for YouTube in 2006. YouTube now gets about 20 percent of all U.S. online video ad money.
Bloomberg TV launched live and on-demand video on Apple TV Wednesday, and now wants to bring its service to other smart TV platforms. Read more »
Rabb.it wants to launch its OS X-only video chat app on publishers’ websites, with a little help from WebRTC. Read more »
Rdio launched its music subscription service in 20 additional countries late Monday, bringing the total number of countries Rdio is available in now to 51. The new markets include 13 Latin American countries, Israel, South Africa, the Dominican Republic and a few smaller countries in Europe. The expansion could give Rdio a chance to leapfrog Spotify in some of these markets: The bigger competitor is thus far only available in 28 countries.