Archives For Industry

sling-room.jpgWhen I say insane, I really mean it in the most positive of ways.

Over the summer Blake Krikorian (CEO) gave me a personal demo of a feature in the works… On his computer we fired up his Slingplayer to remotely view his satellite television feed and then he pointed out the record button. I thought that was somewhat cool — it’s not something I’d use, but I’m aware a certain percent of users have requested the ability to save clips or shows to the PC.

But then things got somewhat strange… You see, we weren’t scheduling a recording we were recording after the fact, via the buffer. And the video was being automagically sent somewhere. And then we watched the clip through a web page. That we could share with others.

I told him he was insane. I told him not enough people would be interested to offset the risk. Because, I also told him he would be sued into oblivion. Good thing for Sling Media he didn’t take my advice to bury it.

Continue Reading…

iphone.jpgBeing at CES, I’ve had very little time to take in anything other than what I’me seeing first hand. Obviously this is a big day for Apple, so I set aside a few minutes to catch up with the news. No time now for a proper analysis and write-up, but I’m providing links to some of Engadget’s coverage if you too are behind in your reading.

If the iPhone works as advertised, they’re going to sell a ton and really bring “smart phones” to the masses (despite the $500-$600 price tag) — along with music and video. I prefer the tactile feel of keys to dial with (especially when driving), but have grown accustomed to my 6700 (“the brick”)… so I can probably live without. Thank God the phone’s not ALL white. Though I would have been fine if they dropped the “i” as well, calling it the Apple Phone instead. In fact, I think that’s what I’ll call it.

One last tibit: I heard from Yahoo’s PR people and I’m super pleased they will provide “full synchronization and address book integration.” I don’t know for sure, but it’s probably going on a decade I’ve been a user of Yahoo mail… At this point, I won’t consider a phone that doesn’t sync my contacts. (I’ll also need to use the phone as a tethered or Bluetooth laptop modem… we shall see!)

Working Hard at CES

Mari Silbey —  January 9, 2007 — 2 Comments

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I have to admit, working with Motorola does have its perks. Last night Carson Palmer made a surprise appearance at Motorola’s evening reception. We’re best buds now! I think I got a better deal than Dave. :)

As for the rest of CES, it seems oddly subdued this year. Not that there haven’t been important announcements, but a lot of the good stuff seems to be happening behind closed doors. That, plus a lot of focus is now shifting over to Macworld and the newly announced iPhone.

A few highlights from walking the CES landscape yesterday:

Ecosol PowerStick P1

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Despite the huge displays by a lot of big companies, some of the best things can be found in inconspicuous nooks and crannies. Here’s the Innovation award-winner Ecosol PowerStick P1. The company’s not even at the show, but the product was displayed in a case with a tiny placard. The PowerStick powers up via USB and then charges all your CE devices via various adapters. I could have used one of these yesterday, particularly for my Sony Cyber-shot.

Yahoo “Booth”

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I really liked Yahoo’s tent set up across from the central hall of the convention center. Good move on Yahoo’s part because once you’re in, there are no distractions from other companies waiting tantalizingly just across the hall. Yahoo also had some knowledgeable folks on hand. The company has an electronic program guide in the works with social networking features wrapped in. The woman demonstrating it actually referenced the opportunity to avoid dealing with middleware. Clearly an interactive-TV veteran. Continue Reading…

Showstoppers

Dave Zatz —  January 9, 2007 — 3 Comments
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The Showstoppers event was held last night (Wynn), where a variety of (mostly) smaller companies set up shop. Not much caught my eye, though I ran into the Engadget, Gizmodo, and CrunchGear teams. (That’s Peter Rojas above, with Randall Bennett handling film duties on the right.) The food wasn’t as good as Digital Experience the night before (Caesars) but they did project Florida’s Buckeye butt-kicking which I appreciated.

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TiVo was present and I chatted a bit (with a more lengthy chat to follow today) and played around in Mac TiVoToGo. Sounds like the Music Choice and Rhapsody deals are in their infancy, so I’m not sure what technology (if any) has been developed at this point.

I know there are some unhappy with the cost associated with Roxio Toast 8 Titanium… I wonder if it’s technically possible to separate the TiVo Transfer tool from the package. As you would expect, I didn’t get much from that line of questioning. ;) Let me remind folks that TiVoDecode Manager is free, community-developed software which performs TiVoToGo transfers and file conversions. However, Roxio’s software is showing up for as low as ~$50. Personally, I’d rather have the official software (which includes DVD authoring). Not to mention… I learned that some more functionality is on the way.

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