HBO CEO thinks shared HBO GO passwords are a great promotion

Anker Saves The Day (Again)

Dave Zatz —  January 18, 2014 — 8 Comments

As I’ve yet to find that perfect gadget caddy, we’ve gone ahead and implemented Plan B. When picking out a new bedroom set about 18 months ago, we went with a collection that we otherwise may have passed over due to tricked out nightstands housing a power squid in the top drawer (and undercarriage lighting). Turns out, the AC adapters were way too bulky to be practical. But what else could I do with the pre-drilled holes and drawer organizer? Enter Anker’s $20 5-port USB charger. I still need to tidy things up and would prefer most of these gadgets live on/in my dresser or the kitchen, but this seems to be a good solution for the time being.

the-voice-tivo

Last month, TiVo repurposed their iconic thumbs up/down buttons for an “Advisors” experiment — providing viewers a method to rate The Voice finalist performances. And the results are in, with over 40,000 recorded clicks correlating perfectly to show results:

Contestant Thumbs Up Thumbs Down
Tessanne Chin 73% 27%
Jacquie Lee 61% 39%
Will Champlin 53% 47%

We hope this is something TiVo intends to flesh out, as it could be compelling on a number of levels – both in terms of offering more compelling interactive advertising (versus the gratuitous pause menu ads) and enhancing the appointment television experience for big events. Indeed, next up for TiVo is the Super Bowl:

Again, our thanks for your assistance.  As some of you guessed, this was a test run for a larger experiment we’ll conduct related to a certain football game in February.  We’ll send out the details in a few weeks.

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Cisco hosted tech reporters at its annual CES press reception last week and took us through a whirlwind of company news, vision-speak, and proof-of-concept demos. The best of the demos was an app giving users the ability not only to control TV from a mobile device, but also to share related secondary content between different screens. For example, execs showed how to bring up detailed program information or social networking content on a tablet, and then transfer that information in widget-like tiles to the television display.

On the tablet, meanwhile, the app kept a strip of video from the live program streaming at the top of the small screen, while still leaving the rest of the window open for browsing Internet content. The idea is that the video strip gives you the feeling that you’re still attached to a TV show even when you’re looking down at your mobile device. It sounds a little ridiculous, but it works. And, if you want, you can drag the strip down to see the full-screen video. Continue Reading…

CES 2014: Oh, The Miles

Dave Zatz —  January 17, 2014 — 7 Comments

While I mostly classify activity trackers as novelties, with limited actionable intelligence, CES is the absolute best place to put them through their paces (ha, punny). With my buddies Brad Linder of Liliputing and Kevin Tofel of GigaOm each stepping up to the plate. Kevin sports a Fitbit Force wristband and Brad rolls with a Withings Pulse puck – so the comparison isn’t entirely equivalent, but both shed light on the massive scale of CES – which covers multiple convention and expo centers across multiple Vegas venues. Each hiked over 35 miles in pursuit of gadgety goodness and we salute them for their efforts (and cardiovascular fitness). Continue Reading…