YouTube looks more “Google” than ever after redesign!
Google rolled out a new look for YouTube on Thursday, around a year after the world’s most popular online video site received its last facelift. The last overhaul focused on giving greater prominence to the user’s personalized content, and this one takes that even further with a cleaner, simpler look that “gets out of the way and lets content truly shine.”
Netflix's recent return to profits must have made CEO Reed Hastings a wee bit giddy; buried deep in the company's new earnings report was a paragraph that teased the possibility of a Netflix-HBO partnership. Will we someday be able to stream Game of Thrones? In a word: no. After the press circulated the speculation yesterday, HBO promptly released a statement squashing the rumor with extreme prejudice.
The rise of the smartphone camera mixed with the ability to freely post video visible to anybody in the world has the power to shake nations, as we've seen around the globe in recent years. It also has a chilling side effect: dissenters are now easier than ever to identify and track down, as we saw vigilante groups doing following the London riots. Dictator haters have a little less to worry about now, as Google has added a free, easy-to-use face blurring tool to YouTube.
Bruhahas between satellite television providers and studio networks rarely deserve a mention in the hallowed e-pages of Maximum PC, but the spat between Viacom and DirecTV recently took a turn for the worse that may interest dedicated cord cutters. Viacom's demand for a $1 billion increase in its contract with DirecTV prompted the satellite company to instead yank Viacom's stations from the air -- Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, BET, more, all gone. In response, Viacom yanked any full, streaming episodes from its properties' various websites. Wait, what?
Netflix honcho Reed Hastings became mighty upset when it was revealed that Comcast's Xfinity TV app for Xbox 360 doesn't count against subscribers' Internet bandwidth cap, and he took to the Net to voice his displeasure with a barrage of Tweets, comments, and diatribes. Apparently, someone listened to his ranting: a new report claims that the Justice Department is quizzing streaming media companies and cable providers alike to determine if the cable companies, who also control Internet access for many, are "acting improperly" to reduce the threat of Netflix and co.
Netflix may be king of the streaming video hill, but millions of intrepid cord cutters have turned to Hulu Plus to feed their next-day fix for newly aired television shows. That may change one day, however; new reports indicate that Hulu is considering requiring its users to have a verified cable subscription, a la HBO GO.
Good news for 3D monitor owners: now, you can watch Gabriel Iglesias and the Epic Meal Time guys shove a Bacon-weave and McNugget-covered cake into their faces and feel like you are right in the room with them! How, you ask? With a little love from Google! Starting today, any short-form 1080p video found on YouTube can be converted to 3D on the fly.
Universal compatibility is a strong selling point in today's always-connected world; one of the reasons Netflix has spanked its competition (thus far, at least) is because it supports virtually everything out there, with over 800 compatible devices. Hulu Plus isn't quite as entrenched, but it's making good inroads thanks to newfound support for several top Android tablets.
Amazon didn't get to be, well, Amazon by doing anything half-assed. The company has been applying its can-do mentality to the streaming video space. While Netflix spent the last six months stumbling and bumbling while its stock price plummeted, Amazon has quietly been bringing new TV titles to its Prime Instant Video service at a rapid pace. Today, the company announced that it has signed a deal with Discovery Communications to bring shows from Animal Planet, TLC and the Discovery family of stations to Prime.