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HDTV Magazine Columns Archive (June, 2008)

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Laser HDTVEnvironment / Green

HDTV Almanac - Laser TV Makes Green Claim

By Alfred Poor • Jun 27 2008, 1:00pm

Mitsubishi has announced that it will ship a 65″ LaserVue laser TV starting in the third quarter of this year, with a 73″ model to follow. Now, the third quarter officially starts on Tuesday and ends on September 30th, but I’ll be stunned if we see any shipments before Labor Day. This does imply that [...]

ProgrammingPC & Laptop Technology

HDTV Almanac - The Game’s the Thing!

By Alfred Poor • Jun 26 2008, 1:00pm

What drives technology adoption, especially for consumer electronics products? History has shown that pornography is a major (though often unmentioned) force. I suspect that sports comes in a close second. I remember that early color television programming focused on sporting events. Sports also make up a large part of the HDTV programming that’s available today. [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)Cable HDTVService & Repair

HDTV Almanac - Cable Transition to Digital

By Alfred Poor • Jun 25 2008, 1:00pm

I’ve been doing my best to spread the word about the details of the upcoming transition to digital-only terrestrial broadcasts of television signals. One of the key points I’ve try to stress is that if you have cable or satellite service, you will not be affected by the digital changeover when it happens next February [...]

Internet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Wonderful World on the Internet

By Alfred Poor • Jun 24 2008, 1:00pm

Content producers keep experimenting with the Internet, trying to find the right combination of features that make it a practical delivery system. One of the biggest names is trying something new this summer: free, full-length, streamed movies.
I remember when I was little, I had to eat dinner and take my bath early so that I [...]

Politics & PolicyEntertainmentSatellite HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Sat-Radio Merger on the Way?

By Alfred Poor • Jun 23 2008, 1:00pm

It has been widely reported that Kevin Martin, Chairman of the FCC, has announced his support for the proposed merger of the XM and Sirius satellite radio services. This is not a story directly about HDTV, but it is an important data point as we rush through a rapidly changing landscape of entertainment delivery systems. [...]

Front ProjectionMobile HDTVDLP HDTVsDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - Optoma Shows Tiny Projector

By Alfred Poor • Jun 20 2008, 1:00pm

At InfoComm this week, Optoma showed off a new pico projector. It was in the Texas Instruments booth, which makes sense when you consider that it relies on TI’s new DLP Pico imager chipset. The tiny box is designed to project a large image from an iPod, digital camera, mobile phone, or other device. The [...]

Digital (DTV) Transition

Ed's View - Will Your Favorite TV Channel Disappear on Feb. 17th?

By Ed Milbourn • Jun 19 2008, 4:38pm

So far, practically all the digital transition "buzz" has been focused on avoiding the trauma that would be suffered by the "poor little old ladies" vainly wiggling their rabbit ears atop their 1975 Zeniths and getting no picture (or sound) on February 17, 2009.

Yes, I'm sure there will be a few of those. But there will be a lot more, and very vocal, "little old ladies" who already have digital reception capability (HDTV or otherwise) who will be shocked on Feb. 17th to find out they are not receiving one of there favorite DTV channels, and many...


HDTV Almanac - Blockbuster Promotes Blu-ray

By Alfred Poor • Jun 19 2008, 1:00pm

I received an email broadcast from Blockbuster yesterday, touting the “good news” that Blu-ray movies are now available for rent or purchase in “every participating Blockbuster store.” That seems to be a curious way of saying that Blu-ray movies are available in all the Blockbuster stores where they are available. But I guess it’s encouraging [...]

SportsGlobal & WorldviewBusiness & Investment

HDTV Almanac - Big Bucks for Olympic Coverage

By Alfred Poor • Jun 18 2008, 1:00pm

As the saying goes, content is king. And when you have a worldwide sporting event that only comes around every four years, you can end up with some pretty impressive content. And so it goes with the Winter and Summer Olympics. According to a report in Business Week, the International Olympic Committee — IOC — [...]


HDTV Almanac - Sharp Sells 9 Foot LCD Monitor

By Alfred Poor • Jun 17 2008, 1:00pm

Okay, let’s get serious about big flat panel TVs. Don’t bother me with wimpy little measurements in inches. If you want to play this game, let’s talk about screen size in terms of feet. And Sharp has sold a flat panel to a movie theater in Japan that is 9 feet diagonal. The Shinjuku Picadilly [...]

Blu-rayHD DVD

HDTV Almanac - Is Blu-ray Taking Hold?

By Alfred Poor • Jun 16 2008, 1:00pm

I continue to be a skeptic about the adoption of Blu-ray, even though it has won the war of the high definition DVD standards. The biggest problem is that many Americans are satisfied with the image quality of standard DVDs scaled up for to view on their HDTVs. (The fact that many people buy HDTVs [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Flexible LCDs from AUO

By Alfred Poor • Jun 13 2008, 1:00pm

“Flexible displays” actually fall into two distinct categories. There are the “deformable” displays that can be curled and uncurled; the holy grail in this department is the “pen” display where the screen retracts into a cylindrical case like a tiny window shade. However, there is a second, more modest category: “conformable” displays. These are panels [...]


HDTV Almanac - Truth Patrol: Wal-Mart Goof

By Alfred Poor • Jun 12 2008, 1:00pm

You have to be careful reading the specifications in advertisements, and we have a case in point this week in the Father’s Day flyer from Wal-Mart:

So what’s wrong with this picture? A 52″ LCD TV sounds interesting, and the under-$1,700 price sounds more like a plasma price than an LCD,so that’s news. The ad also [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Time to Buy!

By Alfred Poor • Jun 11 2008, 1:00pm

The summer slow-down and the stagnant inventories are adding up to pressure on retailers to move product. We’re seeing some very tempting prices in advertisements, but perhaps the most interesting was the email broadside I received yesterday from CompUSA.com. In case you haven’t been keeping score, Tiger Direct bought the Web domain when CompUSA went [...]

PC & Laptop TechnologyHTPCs & LaptopsHD DVDLCD HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - HP’s Touch TV PC

By Alfred Poor • Jun 10 2008, 1:00pm

It’s not too soon to start thinking about what your favorite high school grad may need for college next fall, and HP announced a new computer today that has some attractive features. The new HP TouchSmart IQ506 PC is powered by an Intel Core 2 Duo processor, and has a 22″ widescreen HD LCD display. [...]

LCD HDTVsEnvironment / GreenLED (LCD) HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Sony Rolls Out New LED LCD HDTVs

By Alfred Poor • Jun 9 2008, 1:00pm

Almost all LCD HDTVs use fluorescent lights behind the the LCD panel to provide a backlight. This is a relatively inexpensive solution, but has a number of shortcomings, not the least of which is the reliance on mercury that is an environmental hazard, which in turn makes it difficult to dispose of and recycle the [...]

Blu-rayHD DVDPC & Laptop Technology

HDTV Almanac - Blu-Ray Faces More Blues

By Alfred Poor • Jun 6 2008, 1:00pm

What if you won the battle but lost the war? Blu-ray technology beat out HD DVD as the high definition format for DVD movies, but the products have hardly rocketed off the launch pad. A report from market watcher NPD indicates that 45% of American consumers are aware of Blu-ray, up nearly a third from [...]

Internet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - How Many Online Videos Viewed?

By Alfred Poor • Jun 5 2008, 1:00pm

Here’s a quick quiz for you: according to a report released last month by comScore, how many online videos were viewed in March 2008 by U.S. Internet users?
a: 11.5 million videos
b: 115 million videos
c: 11.5 billion videos
Now, before you make your pick, remember that this is just for one month. And it’s [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Best Buy Tries Free Electronics Recycling

By Alfred Poor • Jun 4 2008, 1:00pm

Best Buy announced this week that it’s trying free electronics recycling for customers in stores in three major market areas. Starting June 1, customers will be able to turn in products for recycling at no charge — even if they did not buy the product at Best Buy — at stores in the greater Minneapolis, [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)

HDTV Almanac - Digital TV Transition Train Wreck

By Alfred Poor • Jun 3 2008, 1:00pm

Nielsen released a report last week indicating that 22% of U.S. TV households are either totally or partially unprepared for the digital TV transition next February (or Labor Day, if you’re in Wilmington, NC). Some of the markets with the highest percentage of unprepared households include Milwaukee, Salt Lake City, Portland (Oregon), and Houston. The [...]

Internet HD VideoMobile HDTVHD DVD

HDTV Almanac - Brave New Movie Rental World

By Alfred Poor • Jun 2 2008, 1:00pm

Netflix is moving to deliver rental movies over the Internet. Blockbuster is figuring that there may be some intermediate ground between online rentals and handling physical DVD discs. So the company is testing kiosks that will let you download a rental movie to a portable movie player in about 30 seconds.
The initial test only works [...]