This time last year, most of us would have predicted that Blu-ray and HD-DVD would still be going at it, but even with a victor now declared in the high definition format war, digital downloads and streaming content are ruling the roost, just as Michael Bay prophesized (minus the corporate conspiracy theory). Hoping to become king of the digital hill, Amazon.com is introducing a new online store of TV shows and movies.
What's that you say, Unbox isn't new? That's right, but this isn't Unbox. Amazon Video on Demand departs from the company's first attempt at offering a digital video download service, and this time around, customers will not be required to download special software to the watch programs they buy. And in another departure from Unbox, the new service will extend support beyond just Windows PCs and TiVo set-top boxes.
Find out what else Amazon Video on Demand brings to the table and when it will be available after the jump.
The console wars just got a whole hell of a lot more interesting. Earlier today at E3, Microsoft and Netflix announced an exclusive partnership that will give Xbox 360 owners the ability to stream movies and TV episodes included with their Netflix subscription to their living room TV set. The new service will launch in late fall and be available to LIVE Gold members who are also Netflix subscribers at no additional cost.
The partnership with Microsoft not only comes as a bonus to existing Xbox 360 owners, who prior to the update had to either buy a $99 set-top player through Roku or deal with unofficial (and buggy) workarounds, but also presents potential console owners a compelling incentive to pick up an Xbox 360 over the Blu-ray capable Playstation 3.
Making copies of protected DVD media is complicated process conducted over dark fiber and only by the hacker elite, or is it? A new survey conducted by Futuresource Consulting shows that in reality, more than one in three US & UK residents have owned up to making copies of content they didn’t own. These numbers are up sharply from the one in four self proclaimed pirates surveyed during the previous year. The results tell the true story of what keeps Hollywood executives up at night. Is the movie industry doomed to suffer the same collapse facing music labels?
Now that Blu-ray rules the high definition roost, many are left wondering what Toshiba's next move be in the wake of HD-DVD's death, and a new logo has kicked speculation into high gear. The Toshiba-chaired DVD Forum recently approved the DVD Download/DL logo, a new spec likely to show up in Toshiba's next batch of super upscaling DVD players. But what exactly is this new feature? According to wireless consumer advocate Christopher Rice, DVD Download/DL equipped players will enable transmissions of HD-quality video from the web, so not only will your standard videos look better when upscaled, but you'll have the option to download the DVD in HD.
If true, one has to wonder why Toshiba would go down this road again and wage another war with Blu-ray, but is it really such a big gamble? Despite winning the high definition format war, Blu-ray sales have been a bust among consumers, and buyers are realizing that upscaled DVDs look pretty darn good on a HDTV. And because the new players won't introduce a new optical format, movie studios won't be able to render the player obsolete as easily as they did with HD-DVD. Sounds promising in theory, but let's see how it shakes out in practice.
When Blu-ray won the high-definition format war, Sony's Playstation 3 transformed from a high priced console into a viable living room entertainment console, but it lacked the video download infrastructure that Microsoft could boast with its Xbox Live Marketplace. Not anymore. Sony CEO Howard Stringer spoke out on the company's goal to rollout its new video service across a varity of products through 2010, and it all starts with the PS3 this summer.
Find out why PS3 owners should be excited, and Microsoft worried, after the jump.
The 9th version of sony's multi-track Vegas video editing programs includes Vegas Movie Studio 9 ($69.95), Platinum Edition ($99.95) and the Platinum Pro Pack ($129.95) which also includes Sound Forge Audio Studio (Sony's waveform editor), extra soundtrack and visual effects and a bonus 2 gb Sony USB flash drive to boot! The Platinum Edition can even burn Blu-ray discs from your HD videocam source. Vegas is the video end of the Sony Creative Software suite (which also includes Sound Forge and Acid).
A scant six months ago, we all wondered which camp would prevail in the high-definition format war. But as fate (and the studios) would have it, Sony's Blu-ray format emerged as the victor, leaving movie buffs with yet another question: Where will we get our flicks from? The days of renting movies in a brick and mortar store are slowly coming to an end, and this new war for your movie-renting dollar is being waged online. Both blockbuster and Netflix offer video rentals delivered straight to your mailbox, and while Netflix seems poised to emerge as a fan favorite, not all changes have subscribers jumping for joy. Click through to learn what's changing with Netflix, and what you can do about it.