Posts Tagged ‘had’

Here comes The Fold, a daily news program made for cord cutters

October 4th, 2012

“The target consumer is a cord cutter.” The Washington Post’s SVP and Chief Digital Officer Vijay Ravindran doesn’t beat around the bush when he is talking about The Fold, a new daily news program launched by his company this week. The Fold is made for people who use Netflix and Hulu, but don’t have any good source for their daily news fix, Ravindran told me during a phone conversation. “There is a great opportunity in the news space” to serve this audience, he added.

The Fold is distributed through PostTV, an Android app that debuted this week on Google TV and Android tablets, and Ravindran told me that the program was made very much with Google TV devices in mind. The show, which runs a total of 15 minutes every night, is split up into several segments, giving viewers the option to either watch the whole thing without any interruption, or skip over the stories that don’t interest them.

Ravindran said that his team followed a mobile-first kind of approach when developing both the show and the app, except that it put the connected TV experience first and then rethought how to make a show that works for it. “We are really working backwards from there,” he said.

A lot of other apps simply take all the video assets of a publisher and make them available on TVs without any additional curation, he lamented. His team on the other hand wanted to build a unique experience that people come back to, much like people used to come home to the evening news. “We are more focused on the daily habit than on one-time use,” Ravindran said, explaining that the app lets users know via Google TV’s notifications whenever a new episode is available.

So why launch on Google TV, as opposed to Roku or maybe even Samsung’s connected TV platform? Ravindran’s answer was refreshingly pragmatic: “We had to start somewhere.” His team had a lot of experience with Android, he added, and developing for Google TV had the benefit that they could also have it work on Andoid tablets without too many modifications. But there will be apps for other platforms as well going forward. Said Ravindran: “We aspire to be on all the platforms that make sense.”

To learn more about cord cutting, check out my ebook Cut the Cord: All You Need to Know to Drop Cable.

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Google’s big IO mistake: Nexus Q

June 28th, 2012

Jelly Bean, a Nexus tablet, even skydiving Google Glass: the Google IO keynote very nearly had it all, but the company’s decision to leave Google TV off the agenda in favor of the Nexus Q was a low. The zinc Epcot of Android was billed as a communal media player, and its presence on stage when Google TV was conspicuously absent undoubtedly led to confusion as to what its exact purpose was, especially given streaming favorites like Netflix and Hulu are missing. Google TV had been, in the run-up to IO, one of the topics most people expected to see covered, and its omission does not bode well.

At $299 the Nexus Q is, as many have observed, not a cheap device, and while Google has made much of its “designed and made in the USA” credentials, it’s a strategy that’s at odds with the “cut the costs” approach of the Nexus 7. If Google’s target is Sonos – admittedly audio-only – then it failed to demonstrate how a multi-zone Nexus Q setup would play out. If it’s a challenge to Apple TV, however, then it’s difficult to see how Google can justify charging three times the amount.

The biggest frustration is that the Nexus Q is already obviously capable of much, much more. Within hours of having access to the first units, Android developers have already managed to get games running, turning the Q into an open-source console of sorts. That’s just the start of things, no doubt; efforts are already underway to unlock what is, behind the curvaceous shell, a Galaxy Nexus without a display.

Google Nexus Q hands-on:

Now, it would’ve been premature for Google to reveal all of its future plans for the Nexus Q, but it did the device a disservice with a presentation that failed to dress the orb in suitable context. The Jelly Bean message was clear: the OS runs faster and smoother than Ice Cream Sandwich, brings a voice search Siri alternative, and tackles fragmentation with the promise of earlier access for new versions for manufacturers. The Nexus 7 news left nobody in any confusion as to the tablet’s selling points; even the Google Glass announcement, with exact details still in relatively short supply, did what it needed to.

For the Nexus Q, though, we had a fancy video in the style of Apple’s promos, an awkward and overly-long demonstration of how several people can manage a shared playlist, and little in the way of context. Even just promising “like Nexus phones, there’s hugely broad potential for the Nexus Q” could’ve been enough to prevent most of the post-keynote confusion.

Instead, the functionality and longer-term intentions were left vague, and without any mention of Google TV it was difficult to see how the two products are meant to sit together. That’s disappointing, after Google worked so hard to improve the latest iteration of its smart TV product; particularly if you’re Sony and Vizio, and announced second-gen Google TV boxes this week in the run-up to Google’s event. Hopefully, it means Google TV will have its moment in the spotlight today, albeit late, at the second day IO keynote.

Find out more about the Google Nexus Q in our full hands-on.

Story Timeline

  • I/O 2012 is Google TV’s last chance for a reboot
  • Google Nexus Q brings media streaming to the home for $299
  • Nexus Q demonstrated with cloud music and movies
  • Google unveils Nexus Q Android-powered computer
  • Google IO 2012: Nexus 7 and Nexus Q hardware wrap-up
  • Google Nexus Q hands-on
  • Google Nexus Q hacked to run games
  • Google IO 2012: Jelly Bean, Nexus 7, Google Glasses and Nexus Q

Google’s big IO mistake: Nexus Q is written by Chris Davies & originally posted on SlashGear.
© 2005 – 2012, SlashGear. All right reserved.

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Apple TV (2012) raids iPad 2 parts bin, packs 32nm A5 silicon

April 11th, 2012

Cupertino’s latest Apple TV has already been torn asunder and had its guts revealed to all the online world. And, we’ve already told you of the many ways that it differs from its predecessor. Despite that in-depth examination of Apple’s media streamer, turns out it had another secret that was recently unlocked by the folks at Chipworks, who discovered it’s packing a new, smaller A5 chip that’s masquerading as a single-core unit. Turns out, that’s the same 32nm dual-core SoC found in new iPad 2s — elder iPad 2 units pack 45nm chips — but the 3rd-gen Apple TV only uses one of those cores to give you your 1080p fix. We don’t know if the second core’s simply sitting idle or if Apple’s using up some defective A5s it had laying around, but we do know that you can see some more close up shots of the silicon in question at the source below.

Apple TV (2012) raids iPad 2 parts bin, packs 32nm A5 silicon originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 11 Apr 2012 22:08:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Engadget HD Podcast 263 – 08.30.2011

August 31st, 2011

We had plenty to talk about on this week’s Engadget HD Podcast but first we had some internal business to attend to with our BTS giveaway (you’re entered right?) and Fantasy Football trash talking. After that, a combination of DirecTV leaks and news from Google and Apple had us in a mood to talk about the state of the TV industry and just who is standing in the way of innovation. Luckily, there is someone working on new technology, and the ATSC is working on new broadcast standards for 3D and other features to be delivered via antenna. After that we turned to the Xbox 360, which is getting some 3D games from Microsoft including Halo: CE Anniversary, and a brand new ESPN3 app. To wrap things up we had to get in some HD display news, with a new projector and Sony’s web app that lets you figure out just what size TV your living room can handle before digging into this week’s HDTV shows, Blu-ray discs and videogames.

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Hosts: Ben Drawbaugh (@bjdraw), Richard Lawler (@rjcc)

Producer: Trent Wolbe

03:40 – Engadget’s HD Back to School Giveaway: Win Scarface and The Big Lebowski on Blu-ray!
04:30 – DirecTV’s Nomad teaser page suggests a Slingbox competitor, but little else
06:30 – More DirecTV Nomad info uncovered, but details are still fuzzy
09:17 – TiVo talks cable, satellite deals in Q2 results; DirecTiVo exposed! (video)
11:51 – Time Warner Cable will pay for your Slingbox, in exchange for love
15:34 – Google TV coming to the UK within six months
20:00 – Google remains committed to TV business, expects more partners soon
26:20 – Android SDK add-on brings Market one step closer to your Google TV
26:50 – Apple stops renting TV shows in iTunes, could be working on a new kind of video service
39:05 – ATSC commences 3DTV standard development, better get your glasses ready
42:29 – Microsoft confirms 3D support in Halo: CE remake for Xbox 360
44:18 – Xbox 360′s ESPN3 app updated with more voice control, split screen and more
49:56 – Digital Projection debuts new native ultrawidescreen projector
51:08 – Sony’s AR tool lets you put big screens in small apartments (video)
52:10 – Must See HDTV (August 29th – September 4th)

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Engadget HD Podcast 263 – 08.30.2011 originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Aug 2011 21:14:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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