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HDTV Magazine Columns Archive (March, 2011)

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General Interest

HDTV Almanac - YouTube Gamble Pays Off

By Alfred Poor • Mar 30 2011, 1:00pm

Google isn’t saying much about the financial side of YouTube, but it has been widely reported that the parent corporation does report that YouTube’s revenues doubled in 2010 compared with 2009. It’s not clear whether or that is enough to be profitable — estimates put the 2009 losses at almost $500 million – but the [...]

MarketplaceBusiness & Investment

HDTV Expert - This TV business is a killer!

By Pete Putman • Mar 29 2011, 8:05pm

Blockbuster announces it will close another batch of stores, while Philips takes a first-quarter beating in TV sales.

3D HDTV

HDTV Expert - One Size Fits All

By Pete Putman • Mar 29 2011, 7:30pm

Active shutter 3D glasses ought to work across all TV brands. What a radical concept!

3D HDTVPC & Laptop TechnologyDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - XPAND 3D to Tame Chaos

By Alfred Poor • Mar 29 2011, 1:00pm

XPAND 3D is leading the charge to bring some sense to the active-glasses stereoscopic 3DTV market. Yesterday, the company joined with Panasonic to announce the M-3DI standard for 3DTVs, computers, and home projectors, as well as digital cinemas that rely on active shutter glasses technology. This new standard provides a communication protocol for the signals [...]

Internet HD VideoBusiness & Investment

HDTV Almanac - Netflix Opens the Kimono

By Alfred Poor • Mar 28 2011, 1:00pm

At the IP&TV World Forum in London last week, the VP of Business Development for Netflix, Bill Holmes, revealed some inside information about his company and its plans. You can watch his entire keynote speech at this link — which I recommend — but here are some highlights.
Perhaps the most intriguing fact of his presentation [...]

3D HDTV

HDTV Almanac - 3D Imaging in a Fog

By Alfred Poor • Mar 25 2011, 1:00pm

When we talk about “3DTV” we generally mean “stereoscopic” images. This approach presents different views to the left and right eyes. The brain then deciphers information from the small differences between the two images, and constructs a three-dimensional image from the combination. This can deliver the illusion of depth, where some objects appear to be [...]

LCD HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Mitsubishi Abandons LCD HDTVs

By Alfred Poor • Mar 24 2011, 1:00pm

When you’ve got an also-ran share of an enormous market and there are no signs that you can make a substantial dent in the leaders’ share, what can you do? Mitsubishi has decided that if you can’t beat them, quit. In a press release last week, the company announced that it was leaving the LCD [...]

Cable HDTVHTPCs & LaptopsSatellite HDTVProgramming

HDTV Almanac - More Retransmission Woes

By Alfred Poor • Mar 23 2011, 1:00pm

LIN Media blacked out programming on 27 stations in 17 markets for a total of eight days during a fee dispute with DISH Network. According to a release by the American Cable Association (ACA), the Univision affiliate WUNI in Providence RI has been blacked out on the local Full Channel TV cable system for 30 [...]

Events & TradeshowsPolitics & Policy

HDTV Almanac - CEA Offers Individual Memberships

By Alfred Poor • Mar 22 2011, 1:00pm

The Consumer Electronics Association hosts a little event in Las Vegas every January called the “Consumer Electronics Show,” better known by its initials: CES. The original intent was to hold a trade show for electronics dealers, such as home stereos and televisions. Then the corporate side of the computer market got boring and Comdex went [...]

OLED HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - 55″ OLED HDTV on the Way?

By Alfred Poor • Mar 21 2011, 1:00pm

Okay, I’m probably the last person to write about this topic, but there was so much noise and confusion that it took me a while to find a source who could give me the straight skinny. And I mean, really skinny!
You may have noticed stories saying that LG is going to come out with a [...]

LED (LCD) HDTVs

HDTV Expert - Samsung’s 2011 Line Show: “The Edge Of Wonder”

By Pete Putman • Mar 17 2011, 11:59pm

I’m not really sure what that catchphrase means. But Samsung is totally plugged in and turned on this year.

3D HDTVMarketplace

HDTV Almanac - Recipe for More 3DTV Content: Small Cameras

By Alfred Poor • Mar 17 2011, 1:00pm

As I’ve written here repeatedly, the biggest factor to slow 3DTV sales is the lack of content. The extra cost of the sets and the annoyance of the glasses would be ignored if there were compelling content available in significant quantity. But it costs a small fortune to convert existing 2D content to 3D, and [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)Service & RepairInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Netflix Dominates Digital Downloads

By Alfred Poor • Mar 16 2011, 1:00pm

Market-tracking firm NPD has issued a press release on digital video based on its VideoWatch Digital service. One of the interesting results is that digital video — either downloaded or streamed — now accounts for one quarter of all video watched at home. That’s a pretty stunning share of the total.
Even more stunning are the [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Japanese Disaster Has Worldwide Impact on CE

By Alfred Poor • Mar 15 2011, 1:00pm

Words fail. Disaster, devastation, catastrophe; nothing seems adequate to describe the situation in northern Japan. The triple whammy of earthquake, tsunami, and electrical power plant failures has resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of lives and untold billions in damages. No doubt, it will be weeks or months or even years before the [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Expert - It’s Deal Time!

By Pete Putman • Mar 14 2011, 4:07pm

Black Friday, Christmas, and late January aren’t always the best times to buy a new HDTV.

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Blockbuster: Down but Not Yet Out?

By Alfred Poor • Mar 14 2011, 1:00pm

It came as no surprise to many when Blockbuster declared bankruptcy last September, given the struggling chain’s continued losses. After a lackluster holiday season, it appeared all but certain that the company was headed for Chapter 7 and liquidation.
But not so fast! As reported by the Wall Street Journal last week, a judge has decided [...]

Service & Repair

HDTV Almanac - Is That a Camel’s Nose I See?

By Alfred Poor • Mar 11 2011, 1:00pm

Dateline: Calgary, Alberta. (That’s Canada, folks.) In a press release, Shaw Communications announced Tuesday that the company was going to offer its subscribers a new service called the Shaw Plan Personalizer. The new offering comes with a three-year price guarantee if you sign up before the end of May, but that’s not the news. Here’s [...]

HTPCs & LaptopsCable HDTVInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Now You Can “Like” a Movie

By Alfred Poor • Mar 10 2011, 1:00pm

Add one more player to the roster of online streaming video content services. Warner Brothers is partnering with the social media juggernaut Facebook. The studio is just dipping its toe in these uncharted waters by offering “The Dark Knight” at $3 for a 48-hour rental. There’s no mention of resolution (or if you have a [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - 15 Million 3DTVs by 2012

By Alfred Poor • Mar 9 2011, 1:00pm

Futuresource has announced a study that predicts an installed base of 15 million 3DTVs in the U.S. by the end of next year. They point to the increased content that is becoming available as the driving force behind this forecast. And other prognosticators are saying that this figure is way too high, especially when you [...]

3D HDTVLCD HDTVsMarketplacePlasma HDTVs

HDTV Expert - Product Review: Samsung PN50C8000 3D Plasma TV

By Pete Putman • Mar 8 2011, 4:08pm

While LCD TVs dominate the marketplace, they’re not the best way to show 3D on a direct view TV – plasma is. And this review will show you why I think so.

BroadcastHTPCs & Laptops

HDTV Almanac - Pot? Kettle? The Screen is Still Black

By Alfred Poor • Mar 8 2011, 1:00pm

Ever heard of LIN Media? It’s quite possible that you haven’t. It’s a company that owns local broadcast television stations across the country, from Albuquerque to Toledo. In many markets, it owns more than one station, such as the CBS and CW affiliates in Buffalo, or the NBC and ABC affiliates in Grand Rapids.
If you’re [...]

Blu-ray

HDTV Expert - Panasonic’s 2011 TV and Blu-ray Press Briefings

By Pete Putman • Mar 7 2011, 6:54pm

The theme for this year is ‘connectivity’ across the TV and Blu-ray line.

3D HDTVBroadcast

HDTV Almanac - More Broadcast 3DTV News

By Alfred Poor • Mar 7 2011, 1:00pm

Most analysts who understand the HDTV market seem to agree that the reported “failure” of 3D HDTVs is not about people not wanting 3DTV at home; it’s more about the fact that there’s very little to watch. So you can expect to see announcements about more content becoming available. And you can expect to see [...]

Internet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Hook’em Up, Danno!

By Alfred Poor • Mar 4 2011, 1:00pm

[Okay, I’m not that big a fan of the 2.0 version of 5-0, but I couldn’t resist the reference for this title.]
The news is that The Diffusion Group has released a new report about Internet connectivity and television, and I expect that some people will be surprised by the results. According to their study, about [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionEvents & TradeshowsBroadcast

HDTV Almanac - TV Replacement Cycles Get Shorter

By Alfred Poor • Mar 3 2011, 1:00pm

At a recent conference hosted by DisplaySearch, a presentation by a Corning representative made an interesting point about how often consumers replace their old television sets. In the old days of analog broadcasts and CRTs, the replacement cycle was about nine years. We then had the digital broadcast transition and the advent of more affordable [...]

Environment / GreenDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - Green Tips

By Alfred Poor • Mar 2 2011, 1:00pm

No, the title is not about the new shoots appearing as spring arrives (there still are some piles of snow around here as I write this). I’m talking about environmentally-friendly ideas. I just came across a site (actually I rediscovered it) that has some great resources. It’s the Green tab at the Digital Tips [...]

3D HDTV

HDTV Expert - 3D At Home: No One’s Buying It??

By Pete Putman • Mar 1 2011, 5:10pm

When the people who produce 3D content aren't on-board with 3D at home, you know it's a tough sell.

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Samsung & LG Still on Top

By Alfred Poor • Mar 1 2011, 1:00pm

A report from industry tracker Displaybank indicates that the Koreans still dominate the flat panel TV market. For worldwide unit shipments in 2010, Samsung accounted for 19% of all flat panel TVs, and LG provided another 13%. That means that nearly one out of three flat panel TVs are made by one of these two [...]