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Hold the iPhone - Apple TV May Get Update as Well
September 06, 2013
Sept. 10 has already been the focus of frenzied attention among those anticipating the next iPhone, but in the last few days another rumor has popped up as well. Specifically, Apple might also use its widely hyped event to announce an update to its Apple TV set-top box product, the rumors suggest. It all started when Apple received a shipment called "Set Top Box with Communication Function" last month.
Webcam Maker Takes FTC's Heat for Internet-of-Things Security Failure
September 05, 2013
The FTC on Wednesday announced a settlement with Trendnet over its lax security practices. The action stemmed from privacy invasions that occurred in January 2012, when hackers posted live feeds to the Web from nearly 700 cameras made by the company. "Right now, we're doing enforcement, as you can see from the Trendnet case," said FTC spokesperson Peter Kaplan.
Acer's Liquid S2 Phablet Arrives Early at 4K Party
September 03, 2013
Against the backdrop of the IFA 2013 trade show in Berlin on Monday, Acer introduced its new Liquid S2 smartphone, a 6-inch full HD handset capable of capturing 4K video. The Liquid S2 has the distinction of being the first smartphone with officially announced 4K Ultra HD recording capability. Its 6-inch screen offers full HD with IPS technology and 1080p resolution.
Face Plus Gives Digital Characters Heart and Soul
August 29, 2013
Mixamo on Wednesday launched Face Plus, a new tool that lets developers and filmmakers convert human facial expressions recorded by a webcam into high-fidelity 3D animation to enliven their digital characters. Face Plus works with any ordinary webcam, making it possible to produce short scenes, commercials or games that feature animated characters without having to bring actors into a studio.
Chromecast Update Snuffs Unauthorized Content
August 26, 2013
Google's Chromecast dongle may be built primarily to stream content from the likes of Netflix and YouTube, but that hasn't stopped app developers from expanding its reach. On Sunday, however, one such developer said that a recent Chromecast update had blocked his Android application. "Google's latest Chromecast update intentionally breaks AllCast," wrote Koushik Dutta, the app's developer.
By Hook or by Crook: B&N Bets on Apps to Buoy Nook
August 19, 2013
Barnes & Noble on Monday announced a suite of free video apps that will let users watch Nook Video movies and TV shows on a range of devices, including tablets that compete with its own Nook. This comes just a month after the retailer announced that it would cease designing and selling its color tablets. Also in July, William Lynch was replaced as CEO and director.
Google to Microsoft: No HTML5, No YouTube App
August 16, 2013
The war of the words between tech giants Microsoft and Google heated up considerably this week when Google blocked a relaunched YouTube app for Windows Phone, causing Microsoft to lash out and question the validity of Google's complaints. "It seems to us that Google's reasons for blocking our app are manufactured," wrote Microsoft's David Howard.
Nice Systems Gives Customers Face Time With CSRs
August 12, 2013
Nice Systems has introduced a Contact Center Video Recording platform to its Nice Interaction Management suite. While not in great demand yet, this feature surely will draw more interest if customer service and regulatory trends continue on their current trajectory. The feature allows organizations to monitor and track customer service that is provided via video-enabled contact centers.
YouTube Guys Give Video Editors a Brand New Playground
August 08, 2013
It appears YouTube cofounders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen want to mix it up with Vine and Instagram. Their video-editing app, MixBit, made its iOS debut on Thursday. An Android version is coming soon. MixBit works much like Vine and Instagram, allowing users to shoot and share short-form videos of up to 16 seconds. However, MixBit goes a big step further, letting users stitch clips together.
Jackie Chan Pummeled on Chinese Social Media
August 07, 2013
Movie star Jackie Chan, the Chinese kung fu aficionado who has appeared in more than 150 films, is taking loads of flak for posts on Chinese social media. Chan first riled Chinese netizens when he posted a photo of a picturesque Beijing skyline with the caption, "I took the picture myself. Who says Beijing doesn't have blue sky? Look how blue the sky is and how green the land is."
Chromecast: Big Threats Come in Small Packages?
July 26, 2013
Google shook up the streaming video world Wednesday when it introduced a $35 HDMI dongle that allows content to be airmailed from a smartphone, tablet or laptop to a TV. Called "Chromecast," the unit is already being hailed as a potential streaming set-top box killer. "It could make the set-top box obsolete," said tech analyst Rob Enderle. "It makes the set-top box redundant."
Google Sticks It to the Home Entertainment Market
July 24, 2013
Google on Wednesday unveiled a new Nexus 7 as part of its latest assault on the market for the connected living room. Another prong of that attack is Chromecast, a streaming content stick that plugs into a TV set's HDMI socket and lets users stream videos and other content seamlessly between the TV and any connected device, ranging from smartphones to tablets to laptops.
Netflix Hits a Triple - Investors Whine for Home Run
July 23, 2013
Netfllix added 630,000 U.S. streaming customers and achieved profit of $29 million, or 49 cents a share, in the second quarter of 2013, it reported on Monday.Those profits represent a dramatic increase from the same period a year ago. The company's revenue, meanwhile, rose 20 percent year-on-year to $1.07 billion. Netflix's stock price has climbed by close to 200 percent this year.
Netflix Plays Its Cards Right
July 19, 2013
Netflix joined the ranks of Emmy nominees for the first time Thursday, scoring 14 nods for three of its online TV shows. The streaming service picked up nine nominations for House of Cards, its original political thriller series, three for its reboot of the popular comedy Arrested Development, and a final two for its original horror thriller Hemlock Grove.
Google Wants Its Web TV
July 17, 2013
Google is considering the possibility of launching an Internet-based TV service, according to numerous media reports. Specifically, the company has approached several media companies about the possibility licensing of content for an Internet-based TV service that would stream traditional TV programming. Google has reportedly also talked with programmers about the initiative.
Kaltura's Zohar Babin: Video Power to the People
July 09, 2013
In a world of mostly proprietary video platform developers, success for an open source startup requires very sharp cutting-edge technology. For Kaltura, part of the secret has been making sure that competitive edge is never dulled by settling for being just good enough. Adding a dual-license option often makes the difference between a free download and real sale.
New Canon DSLR Focuses on Smooth Video
July 03, 2013
Canon took a step forward Tuesday in solving a problem that's been plaguing DSLR videographers for a long time: maintaining smooth video with a camera's autofocusing system. With Canon's new 20.2 megapixel EOS 70D, photographers will be able to shoot video close to the quality of video shot with a camcorder, according to the company. The secret is the 70D's newly designed CMOS sensor.
Firefox 22: Look Ma, No Plug-ins!
June 26, 2013
Firefox 22, launched by the Mozilla Foundation on Tuesday, supports voice calling, video chat and peer-to-peer file sharing through the browser without plug-ins, thanks to full support for the WebRTC application programming interface. Firefox and Google Chrome support WebRTC, but currently Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Apple's Safari browser do not.
Instagram Video Comes Out to Play
June 20, 2013
Facebook's Instagram on Thursday launched a video app, as had been widely expected. Instagram video is available now in the iTunes App Store and on Google Play for iOS 4.0 and Android 4.0 respectively. "130 million people from day one are going to have access to video the way they have access on photographs," said Instagram cofounder Kevin Systrom.
Instagram Video Could Be Facebook's Mobile Ace in the Hole
June 18, 2013
Buzz is building over Facebook's rumored plan to launch a mobile video app for Instagram at an event on Thursday. Video functionality in Instagram, the company Facebook purchased for $1 billion in April of last year, would be a direct challenge to Twitter's Vine app. Vine lets users take 6-second videos on iOS or Android devices and share them on Vine's own network, Twitter or Facebook.
Netflix, DreamWorks Team in Huge Original Content Deal
June 17, 2013
Video streaming service Netflix on Monday announced a new, multiyear partnership with DreamWorks Animation whereby it will bring many of the studio's beloved characters to the TV market via a branded collection of shows. Marking the largest deal for original first-run content in Netflix's history, the partnership will include more than 300 hours of new programming.
iRobot Remotely Goes Where You Want to Go, Sees What You Want to See
June 10, 2013
iRobot has announced the Ava 500, a robot that lets users conduct video conferences while on the move. The device was developed and will be marketed in close alliance with Cisco. It consists of a Cisco personal telepresence system -- essentially a two-way videoconference screen with associated technology -- mounted on a smart pedestal from iRobot that stands at about 5 feet 5 inches.

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