Mute TV Commercials

Meet MuteMagic, a little $40 box that automatically mutes TV commercials

By on May 25, 2015 at 9:56 AM.

Meet MuteMagic, a little $40 box that automatically mutes TV commercials

While there is absolutely no question that the MuteMagic is a couple decades too late to find real success, there is also no question that people who do decide to buy it will wonder how they ever lived without it — presuming it works as advertised. The website is a throwback to the dawn of the Internet and the device itself looks like something slapped together using parts from RadioShack, but MuteMagic’s promise is nothing short of a game-changer: For just $40, this little gadget will automatically mute commercials while you watch TV. More →

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Netflix TV Original Programming

Netflix’s not-so-secret plan to kill TV

By on April 21, 2015 at 1:54 PM.

Netflix’s not-so-secret plan to kill TV

Netflix is a freight train seemingly incapable of slowing down. Just last quarter, the online streaming service netted an additional 4.9 million subscribers. Looking ahead, Netflix has no plans to rest on its laurels and will continue to aggressively attack the entrenched TV model that seems to be gradually losing its hold on the masses.

At the heart of Netflix’s plan to take on TV, aside from its affordable monthly rate, is original content. In a relatively short amount of time, Netflix was able to pivot from a company that primarily sent subscribers DVDs to a media powerhouse with an impressive stable of its own original programming. From House of Cards and Daredevil to Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Arrested Development, the value proposition of Netflix’s exclusive content is slowly but surely starting to rival HBO.

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Game of Thrones BitTorrent

HBO is sick of Game of Thrones torrents and it’s now going after individual pirates

By on April 20, 2015 at 7:00 PM.

HBO is sick of Game of Thrones torrents and it’s now going after individual pirates

Long gone are the days when HBO seemingly paid little mind to piracy. Following the leak of the first four episodes of season 5 of Game of Thrones, TorrentFreak is reporting that HBO is now dead serious about thwarting individuals from illegally downloading the world’s most pirated show.

Specifically, HBO is now putting individual pirates on notice. HBO has already issued “thousands of warnings to Internet subscribers whose connections were used to share leaked Game of Thrones episodes.” The warning messages, naturally, are being relayed through each individual user’s ISP.

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Netflix Our Planet

Netflix to deliver Planet Earth sequel in stunning 4K quality

By on April 16, 2015 at 8:45 PM.

Netflix to deliver Planet Earth sequel in stunning 4K quality

Netflix’s stable of exclusive content is about to get bigger and better. The Internet streaming juggernaut announced this week that it plans to revive the BBC’s award winning nature documentary Planet Earth, a series which initially aired back in 2006. In case you’re unfamiliar, Planet Earth the most expensive nature documentary ever produced — provided viewers an incredible and in-depth look at the world we live in, all in stunning HD. More →

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Arrested Development Season 5

Arrested Development Season 5 is official: 17 new episodes coming

By on April 7, 2015 at 3:40 PM.

Arrested Development Season 5 is official: 17 new episodes coming

Arrested Development fans have a lot to be grateful for this year. While appearing on Bill Simmons’ The B.S. Report this week, Arrested Development executive producer Brian Grazer confirmed that Season 5 of the beloved and quirky show is official, with 17 new episodes in the pipeline.

While talking about popular TV shows and their influence on mass culture at large, Grazer let this little tidbit fly.

“People are loyal to it,” Grazer said, “and we’re gonna do another 17 episodes.”

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Netflix Video Quality

How Netflix is spearheading a video quality revolution

By on April 6, 2015 at 1:01 PM.

How Netflix is spearheading a video quality revolution

Netflix has sure come a long ways from its humble beginnings as a company that simply made it exceedingly easy to watch DVDs. These days, Netflix is a media powerhouse with its own stable of award-winning and increasingly popular original content.

What’s awesome about Netflix is they’re not just pushing the envelope content wise, they’re leading the charge on the video quality front as well.

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Apple TV Streaming

How Apple plans to bankroll its rumored game-changing TV streaming service

By on April 2, 2015 at 8:55 AM.

How Apple plans to bankroll its rumored game-changing TV streaming service

Amid reports that Apple is planning to roll out a $30-$40 TV streaming service this fall, Re/Code reports that Apple is hoping that TV networks will handle the infrastructure costs involved in rolling out such an endeavor.

What this means, in a nutshell, is that Apple doesn’t want to actually serve the streams from its own servers, but rather provide the hardware and software that TV networks can tap into. While this may seem, at first glance, like Apple is trying to protect its pocketbook, it’s worth noting that many of the content providers Apple is reportedly talking to already manage their own streaming infrastructure.

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Apple Comcast TV

The real reason Apple’s TV streaming service might not include NBC

By on March 30, 2015 at 3:30 PM.

The real reason Apple’s TV streaming service might not include NBC

According to a recent report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple is planning to roll out its own TV streaming service later this fall in a bold attempt to take control of the living room.

The rumored TV service will reportedly offer users about 25 channels and will cost about $30-$40 a month. Some of the big name channels reported to be on board include ESPN, FX, along with content from 3 of the 4 major broadcast networks, with NBC being the lone holdout.

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Netflix Movies

How Netflix creates addicting and binge-worthy TV

By on March 24, 2015 at 12:40 PM.

How Netflix creates addicting and binge-worthy TV

Netflix arguably ushered in the phrase “binge watching”, a term which refers to when one plops down and watches a few episodes of a TV show in quick succession. And given the unprecedented level of TV quality these days, it’s not unheard of for fans to binge watch entire seasons of certain shows over the course of one weekend.

Netflix in recent years has successfully differentiated itself from other streaming services by developing its own programming. From House of Cards to Orange is the New Black, Netflix has seemingly perfected the art of not only producing incredible TV shows, but producing shows that are exceptionally binge worthy.

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Cable TV Decline

The fall of cable is coming

By on March 24, 2015 at 8:30 AM.

The fall of cable is coming

Cable is amazing. For as much as people justifiably rag on cable providers, the actual content and breadth of channels is absolutely mesmerizing. When you toss DVR and on-demand functionality into the mix, there’s really never been a better time to be a TV and movie fan.

But cable is expensive, and cable providers, like most successful incumbents in any given industry, have failed to keep up with the times. Cable providers, by remaining dead set on preserving current revenue streams, simply haven’t adjusted to a marketplace where paying well over $100 a month for cable is increasingly falling out of favor with consumers, especially when a monthly Netflix subscription can get the job done for less than $10.

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Targeted Ads Coming to TV

Commercials are about to get personal as targeted ads expand to TV

By on January 31, 2014 at 3:10 PM.

Commercials are about to get personal as targeted ads expand to TV

It’s time to accept the fact that targeted ads are no longer restricted to your browser. Facebook is stuffing them inside your mobile apps, Apple might put them in your thermostat, and now The Washington Post is reporting that Comcast and NBC Universal are bringing targeted advertisements to your television. Much like the intelligent political ads that Dish and DirecTV announced earlier this week, the newly-minted NBCU+ service will “allow marketers to target groups of consumers that fit certain demographic and interest profiles.” More →

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4K TVs Lower Prices 2014

You might actually be able to afford a 4K TV this year

By on January 2, 2014 at 8:00 PM.

You might actually be able to afford a 4K TV this year

Ever since they were first unveiled, ultra high-definition televisions have been little more than a pipe dream for the average consumer. With prices soaring as high as $150,000 for the largest models, many had begun to write off the whole idea of ultra HD until the prices began to dip below Lamborghini levels. Although prices remain much higher than many are willing to spend, The Wall Street Journal reports that a 4K future could be closer than ever. More →

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FCC Loud TV Commercial Ban

Has the FCC ban on loud TV commercials worked?

By on December 11, 2013 at 10:00 PM.

Has the FCC ban on loud TV commercials worked?

It has been a year since the CALM Act was officially implemented and promised to curb the volume on those raucous commercials that manage to eke out an extra few decibels from your television. Paul McNamara at Network World has taken a look at some of the data to try and decide whether or not the law has actually had any effect. According to the FCC, there are fewer complaints this year, although in this case, “fewer complaints” still means about 20,000. More →

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