Alright, cheap geeks. It’s tough to want to put out even $0.99 for the latest single on iTunes (or wherever), and don’t even get me started about the annoyance that occurs when you find some slammin’ new track on Youtube, only to realize that you can’t rock out to it in your car because… it’s… on… Youtube.
Youtube is like the poor man’s free music library – just go scan for any music video and voila! It’s an instant way to dial up your favorite songs without having to pay for the track. However, this isn’t really the kind of solution that you can take with you.
For starters, pulling up Youtube video after Youtube video on your phone in a vain attempt to rock out sans cash investment will make you look like the biggest cheapskate alive. It’ll also drain your battery. And, here’s the kicker, it won’t work anywhere that’s lacking in wireless coverage. Or, to put it another way, there’s no reason why you should be trying to transform Youtube videos into your song library.
Social networking addicts have a new entry-level camcorder to play with in Sanyo's VPC-GH4. For $200, this newest addition to Sanyo's Xacti line purportedly offers easy tagging and uploading of videos and pictures to sites like Youtube, Facebook, and Picassa. Twitter users will also benefit from the bundled software, which serves up a convenient link for use with the microblogging service, Sanyo says.
"More than ever, consumers are interested in easy to use imaging solutions that deliver with cutting edge technology," says Tom Van Voy, General Manager of the Consumer Solutions Group for SANYO North America. He added, "SANYO’s GH4 offers the perfect blend of style and performance while recording archive quality photos and videos that people will be proud to display on their HDTVs or share with friends and family from their computer."
Looking over the spec sheet, Sanyo has a compelling package in the budget camcorder arena. The $200 Xacti boasts 10MP photos, a 2.7-inch LCD monitor, Full HD videos at 1080, 60i (1920x1080), 10X dual range optical zoom, SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card support, and mini-HDMi port.
Google has been quietly dabbling in streaming movie rentals since the beginning of this year. YouTube's repertoire of rentable movies continues to grow at a steady pace, but the service commands little attention. That is likely to change in the next few months as big G plans to add streaming movie rentals from major film studios to its catalog, according to a Financial Times report that cites several sources familiar with ongoing negotiations between Google and the movie studios.
The plan is to launch the streaming movie rental service, or more accurately its expanded avatar, in the US first, before offering it to the rest of the world. New titles will be available for streaming at the same time as their Blu-ray and DVD releases, with each movie rental costing $5.
If none of the movies in YouTube's current catalog impress you, or if you live in a country where the service is currently unavailable, then you could consider scouring its Movies channel, a repository of free streaming movies that recently received a massive shot in the arm through partnerships with movies studios like Lionsgate, MGM and Sony Pictures. The channel now boasts 400 free movies that can be watched from anywhere in the world.
It's a big day for the Internet, an Internet meme has successfully invaded the real world. The Auto-Tune the News folks saw their tweaked version of the Lincoln Park Bed Intruder song reach number 89 on the Billboard Hot 100 today. This feat was made possible thanks to a 2005 decision by Billboard to include digital downloads in their rankings. Bed Intruder is currently number 35 in iTunes.
Just let that sink in, the Gregory Brothers (the group behind Auto-Tune the News) saw something in the cadence and vocabulary in this news report, and made a hit song out of it. The song is currently only available as a digital download. The Gregory Brothers recently told Wired that they are also working on a pilot with Comedy Central based on Internet culture.
If you haven't heard the song, just check it out. You won't be sorry.
As if people needed another excuse to use Facebook, UK's Channel Five has decided to use the social networking site as a content delivery platform. According to a NewMediaAge report, Five is close to becoming the first broadcaster to show programs on Facebook. “All systems go” is how NMA's sources described the deal between Five and Facebook. They also revealed that Five will begin delivering TV content through Facebook “within the next week to ten days.” The TV shows will be delivered by embedding Demand Five, Five's TV-on-demand player, into Facebook. UK's Facebook population stands at 26 million.
AMD on Monday lobbed the first verbal assault at Nvidia in a humorous YouTube video poking fun at Fermi, paving the way for what could become an epic battle of marketing minds taking aim at your gaming hardware dollars.
The video starts off in a mock SWAT briefing room where a team of law enforcement officials discuss a suburban home that seems suspicious because of the amount of heat detected from their overhead infrared cameras.
"Based on those suspicions, we took a look at their energy consumption," the head dude in charge explains as he shows a graph revealing how much more power the questionable suburban home is using compared to an average home.
So what exactly did they find when raiding the home?
"Fermi again. That's the third time this week," one of the SWAT team members says.
Have you been on Facebook today? How about Twitter, YouTube, or any other of the scores of social networking sites scattered across the Web? Chances are you've visited at least one of them, and if Nielsen's latest stats are correct, you'll spend about six hours this month on social networking sites and blogs.
According to Nielsen, users are now spending 23 percent of their Internet time on social networking sites, a leap of 7 percentage points from this same time last year. This ranks as the biggest jump for any of Nielsen's online categories, which also include checking email, using Web portals, and playing games. And if we widen the social umbrella to also include communicating via blogs, personal email, and instant messaging, that number jumps to 36 percent.
"Despite the almost the almost unlimited nature of what you can do on the Web, nearly half of U.S. online time is spent on three activities -- social networking, playing games, and emailing," says Dave Martin, vice president of primary research at Nielsen.
Other activities, like shopping and random Web searches, haven't changed a whole lot, while watching online videos increased slightly from 3.5 percent to 3.9 percent from June 2009 to June 2010.
YouTube has raised the cap on video length from 10 minutes to 15 minutes following numerous entreaties to this effect. According to the world's most popular video site, the ability to upload videos longer than 10 minutes was the most requested feature. Some of you might be wondering why YT took so long to raise the limit.
On the face of it, the company feared that extending the upload limit without due preparation could have overwhelmed the site with unauthorized videos – especially longish content like movies. So YouTube was busy perfecting copyright-protection tools like its “state-of-the-art Content ID system” while your were clamoring for a more generous upload limit or none at all.
“Because of the success of these ongoing technological efforts, we are able to increase the upload limit today. We will continue our strong commitment to provide advanced technology and tools to protect the rights of small and large copyright owners worldwide. We’ll also do everything we can to release incremental improvements like this one that benefit our video creators,” YouTube said in a blog post.
YouTube earlier this month launched its Leanback UI, which is sort of like Pandora for videos. In sort, Leanback serves up videos based on your settings, preferences, subscriptions, and friends on YouTube, all wrapped in a slick interface ideal for couch potatoes with a wireless keyboard.
As it turns out, the Leanback interface is also pretty well suited for remote control with Wii remotes. To prove it, Android Technologies on Monday released its WiiLeanback software, a free download that maps the buttons on the Wii controller to YouTube's Leanback buttons.
"The arrow buttons on the Wiimote take the place of the arrow buttons on the keyboard," the project's author describes in a YouTube video. "The 'A' button pauses and unpauses the video while the 'B' button or trigger button on the back of the Wiimote acts as the enter key."
You don't need to own a Wii console to take advantage of WiiLeanback, just a Wii remote and a Bluetooth dongle.
The legal battle of Viacom against Google took years to come to some sort of conclusion. We knew lawyers weren't cheap, but in their recent earnings call, Google CFO Patrick Pichette reminded us just how not cheap. Google spent $100 million defending themselves in the Viacom-YouTube copyright infringement lawsuit, and the case didn't even make it to trial.
A judge dismissed the case last month, and Google is declaring victory. Though, there is still the possibility Viacom could appeal. But considering how much Google spent on this little endeavor, we imagine Viacom's bill was just as high, if not higher. When the total amount of damages requested was only $1 billion, Viacom might be doing the math. Add to that the strong language the judge used in the judgment, coming down on the side of "safe harbor", and Viacom might do better to move on.