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HDTV Magazine Columns Archive (November, 2010)

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Cable HDTVService & Repair

HDTV Almanac - Time Warner Scales Down

By Alfred Poor • Nov 29 2010, 1:00pm

This is big news, folks. Time Warner has announced a new subscription option. For $30 to $40 a month, the cable service will offer a stripped down “basic” plan named “TV Essentials” as a response to subscribers who complain that the monthly fees are just too high. The service will include local channels and 12 [...]

Deals & Discounts

HDTV Almanac - Are You Watching South Korea?

By Alfred Poor • Nov 26 2010, 1:00pm

Note: I wrote this entry earlier this week, and the situation has undoubtedly developed further since I put this together. So while the details may need to be updated, the issues remain the same.
You may be expecting some insightfull commentary about Black Friday deals on HDTVs, but I’m leaving that for others to cover. Instead, [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Happy Thanksgiving!

By Alfred Poor • Nov 25 2010, 1:00pm

I’m enjoying a day when our home will be filled with friends and family, so I’m not here to write an HDTV Almanac entry today. Instead, let me just wish you and yours happiness and a wonderful list of reasons to be thankful today and always.
Among the many items on my list is the support [...]

Internet HD VideoBroadcastProgramming

HDTV Almanac - Speed Bump in FilmOn Road to Success

By Alfred Poor • Nov 24 2010, 1:00pm

What would you say about a company that started streaming television programming over the Internet to subscribers, and chalked up 30 million users in a few weeks? That’s reportedly the score for FilmOn, one of two companies that are streaming locally-broadcast television content over the Internet. Along with iviTV, FilmOn believes that it has the [...]

Internet HD VideoCable HDTVHD DVD

HDTV Almanac - No-Disc NetFlix Subscription

By Alfred Poor • Nov 23 2010, 1:00pm

The future is here. Netflix has announced a new subscription option; for $7.99 a month, you get unlimited access to the company’s streaming video content for movies and television episodes. That’s a drop of $1 a month from the old plan that also included one DVD movie rental at a time. The cost of the [...]

3D HDTV

HDTV Almanac - 3D Avatars on Stage?

By Alfred Poor • Nov 22 2010, 1:00pm

Last week, I stumbled across the phenomenon of Hatsune Miku, a teen-idol Japanese pop singer. One important attribute sets her apart from other performers; she is entirely computer generated. Not only is her anime-style person digitally drawn, her voice and dance moves are also synthesized from the musical score and lyrics. And perhaps most impressive [...]

Blu-ray

HDTV Expert - Hmmm…A New Blu-Ray Player. Why Not?

By Pete Putman • Nov 20 2010, 12:50am

I’ve never believed the Blu-ray format would be as popular as conventional DVDs. Yet, I just bought a new Panasonic DMP-BD65. Here’s why.

OLED HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Samsung Shows 19″ OLED TV

By Alfred Poor • Nov 19 2010, 1:00pm

According to several reports, Samsung demonstrated a prototype OLED television this week at a trade show. The 19″ model only had a resolution of 960 by 540, which is not sufficient for a high definition display. This does represent one quarter of a 1080p panel, however, so it presumably demonstrates a production process that can [...]

LCD HDTVsMarketplace

HDTV Almanac - India LCD TV Sales Soar

By Alfred Poor • Nov 18 2010, 1:00pm

In 2009, about 745,000 LCD TVs were sold in India. In October this year, about 700,000 LCD TVs were sold in India. (These figures come from the display tracking firm, DisplaySearch.) In other words, they nearly matched all of the prior year’s sales in just one month. Sony, Samsung, and LG were among the dominant [...]

Blu-ray

HDTV Almanac - DVDs in Decline

By Alfred Poor • Nov 17 2010, 1:00pm

People spent much less money on buying movies on disc in the first nine months of this year than last year, according to research by BTIG Research, as reported by the LA Times. This is in spite of the amount spent on Blu-ray discs nearly doubling in that same period.
What’s behind the 9% drop? Redbox [...]

Deals & Discounts

HDTV Almanac - Black Friday Starts at Midnight

By Alfred Poor • Nov 16 2010, 1:00pm

It looks like you’ll be able to sleep in on Black Friday this year, if you’re planning to do your shopping at WalMart. According to reports, the stores will open at midnight for many of the the Black Friday special deals. Unfortunately, if you want consumer electronics devices, the only midnight deal appears to be [...]

3D HDTVBroadcastDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Expert - 3D over broadcast digital TV: Can it be done right now?

By Pete Putman • Nov 15 2010, 5:17pm

You betcha, although there are a few ‘catches.’

Service & RepairHTPCs & LaptopsInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Boxee Box Debuts

By Alfred Poor • Nov 15 2010, 1:00pm

There’s another network media player on the market. Boxee has been available as a free service that you can download to your computer (which you then hook up to your TV), but now the Boxee Box is shipping for $199. While it is priced higher than other products–such as Apple TV or the various Roku [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Get Ready for Bargains!

By Alfred Poor • Nov 12 2010, 1:00pm

The HDTV manufacturers are making bold statements about how they’ve got the inventory problems under control, but it sounds like whistling in the dark to me. A perhaps more honest appraisal of the situation came out this week from the president of the discount consumer electronics retailer, hhgregg, according to a report in TWICE.
In a [...]

Mobile HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Still Watching Standard Definition?

By Alfred Poor • Nov 11 2010, 1:00pm

More than half the U.S. households — 56% — now have at least one HDTV installed, according to a new study by Nielson. That’s not particularly surprising, since it’s getting increasingly difficult to buy a display that isn’t high definition (except for the iPad perhaps).
But here’s a statistic that might surprise you. More than 80% [...]

3D HDTVLCD HDTVs

HDTV Expert - Product Review: Samsung UN46C7000 3D LCD TV

By Pete Putman • Nov 10 2010, 10:26pm

Samsung was one of the first companies to get out of the gate with 3D TVs. Here’s a close-up look at the smallest model in their product line, the UN46C7000.

Internet HD VideoWireless HDMI/HDTV

HDTV Almanac - The Power of a Home Network

By Alfred Poor • Nov 10 2010, 1:00pm

You now have more reasons than ever to connect your HDTV to the Internet (or to some device that connects to the Internet), but many people don’t have an outlet for their home network in the living room. A wireless WiFi connection is not always the answer, as it may not have sufficient bandwidth to [...]

3D HDTVSports

HDTV Almanac - Sports Fans Like 3DTV

By Alfred Poor • Nov 9 2010, 1:00pm

ESPN has released a report about testing it conducted with sports fans and the viewing of sporting events on 3DTV. The study was conducted by ESPN Research + Analytics during the network’s 3D broadcasts of the 2010 FIFA World Cup last summer.
One of the results was that fan enjoyment of the event rose from 65% [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Expert - Cable TV – Socialism?

By Pete Putman • Nov 8 2010, 10:55pm

Let’s see: Forcing you to buy things you don‘t want, to get the things you do want. Hmm…does that sound like a free market system? Didn’t think so.

Environment / GreenLCD HDTVsLED (LCD) HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Philips HDTV Comes with Solar Powered Remote

By Alfred Poor • Nov 8 2010, 1:00pm

The new 42PFL6805 LCD HDTV from Philips boasts a “green” feature that you won’t find on the screen; the set’s remote control has solar panels on the back so that it can recharge using the light available in the room. In my experience, we get a year or two from a set of batteries in [...]

Cable HDTVLED (LCD) HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - It’s Time for Electronics to Fall Back

By Alfred Poor • Nov 5 2010, 1:00pm

Okay, it’s time for my semi-annual rant about consumer electronics that tell time. Just about everything seems to tell the time these days, from microwave ovens to electronic picture frames. Some of them make sense; a cell phone needs an internal clock, I believe, to help negotiate communications with cell towers, for example. I’m not [...]

Cable HDTVService & RepairSports

HDTV Almanac - Look, Coach: No Ads!

By Alfred Poor • Nov 4 2010, 1:00pm

An article in GigaOm noted a curious detail about ESPN’s new TV Everywhere service that is now available to Time Warner subscribers. You can now access live and on-demand content from the sports network, but only if you are an authenticated subscriber to TW cable.
The curious detail is that the content is not accompanied by [...]

HTPCs & Laptops

HDTV Almanac - Don’t Touch that Screen!

By Alfred Poor • Nov 3 2010, 1:00pm

Let’s face it; touchscreens are taking over. Smartphones, personal media players, and even HDTV remote controls are now using touchscreens. The advantages are obvious; instead of being limited to pre-defined functions for specific buttons and other controls, a touchscreen can display an infinite number of choices, and lets you respond with touchs and gestures for [...]

HTPCs & Laptops

HDTV Almanac - Watch that Dock!

By Alfred Poor • Nov 2 2010, 1:00pm

If you have a personal media player such as an iPod, you probably enjoy listening to and viewing your content in private. Bu if you’re like many people, you also like to be able to share the content with others, especially at home. Just look at all the docking devices that include speakers so that [...]

Internet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Faster Ethernet on the Way?

By Alfred Poor • Nov 1 2010, 1:00pm

As we move into the brave new world of HDTV video delivered over the Internet, we need to find ways to hand the enormous amounts of data required. And the prospect of using 2K resolution video — equivalent to four 1080p displays — means that we will need even bigger pipes to move this data [...]