Tag Archives: tv

Top Five Things to Look for When Buying an HDTV

Since we talked about 4k screens the other day, it occurred to me that some people may not even know where to begin when trying to decide on a regular old HDTV purchase. It seemed like a perfect time to revisit the advice that Matt Smith (no, not Doctor #11, but The Matt Smith!) once shared. While this was written a few years ago and some of the details may be out of date, most of this excellent advice holds true today if you’re not yet committed to going 4k.

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Apple TV Initial Impressions


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I received my Apple TV the other day, and decided to unbox it in front of the live audience. Yes, I know that the television currently in my home office sucks. If you have recommendations for a new one, I’d love to hear them.

I appreciate that the Apple TV is black and silver. It matches my home office perfectly. Poor Wicket wants a Google TV but has to be patient for a while longer. The remote app is nice for both the Apple TV and my iPhone. I will likely use my phone as the remote.

Unboing was pretty simple… pull out the device, the instruction book and the remote and you’re done. If you’re planning to get an Apple TV, how soon will you have one? If you’re not getting one – why not? I’m curious to hear what everyone in the community is planning to do, and why.

Apple TV has been redesigned to be small in size but big on entertainment. Rent from the largest selection of HD movies — many available the same day they come out on DVD. Watch Netflix titles instantly. Rent TV shows, commercial free in HD. And stream photos and music from your computer to your widescreen TV. Best of all, Apple TV is just $99.

The Apple TV is very portable… enough so that I will carry it with me wherever I want to use it in my house. I will likely also bring it along when I travel somewhere. Using iTunes with it to find movies is actually pretty simple and intuitive. The prices are comparable (and often cheaper) than what you’ll find anywhere else.

Have you tried an Apple TV yet? What are your thoughts?

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Are You Ready to Cut the Cable?


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37% of young Netflix subscribers aged 25-34 have cut cable for Netflix only, and almost 30% of users between ages 18-24 are using Netflix only vs. cable or satellite. Are people cutting cable for On Demand services? Are you thinking about it? Lamarr is definitely thinking about it – or at least talking about it.

It’s interesting to see so many people getting rid of standard cable connections in favor of services such as Hulu and Netflix. A recent post on Mashable talks about the ways our living rooms are changing. They discuss every option available these days from Boxee to Netflix to Apple TV.

Lamarr happens to be in this “young age bracket.” He hasn’t cut his cable yet, but he did purchase the Roku Box. He is amazed by it – and the fact that Hulu will be coming to the Roku this fall. He’s replacing his standard TV in his living room with Google TV in the near future, as well.

At the end of October, Lamarr is cutting his cable. Are you doing the same?

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Is a Hulu Plus Subscription Worth Paying For?


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Will you become a Hulu Plus subscriber, or will you stick to the Hulu experience you’ve known to this point? If not, why not – and if so, why so? Some people are upset over the way Hulu decided to support the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad – but the other alternative seems just as expensive (either with media ala-carte spending or time spent on converting illegally-attained videos). It certainly works – no doubt about that. If you don’t like what they’re doing, you can vote with your feet – but complaining about it in a YouTube comment probably won’t get you very far.

There are more than thirty currently popular television shows (from ABC, NBC and FOX) available to watch in their current season via Hulu Plus. In addition, you can catch up with hundreds of your favorite shows’ past seasons and episodes. There are more than 120 seasons and 2,000 episodes of rich library content—that’s thousands of hours of entertainment.

You can use your Hulu Plus subscription on several devices – not just your Apple ones. You can use certain Samsung televisions, your Xbox 360 and more. They’re accessible anywhere you can get to your account, so you can watch these easily on the road.

If you do plan on getting a subscription, know that you’re going to sit through commercials. Commercials on Hulu aren’t intrusive in my opinion. Only you can decide if paying for Hulu is worth it to you. It’s definitely worth my money – and time.

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Twitter TV

Twitter TV

After entering my credentials, it took me ten minutes to bang this out on the remote control and virtual keyboard. It would have taken half that time if I hadn’t pressed the wrong key and the stupid widget software was intelligent enough to save a draft.

As far as I’m concerned, the Internet widgets on Samsung TVs are a total #FAIL.

3D TV Is…


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3D technology has been around for several years now and has undergone significant changes during that time. Ryan called from the UK asking my thoughts on 3D TV in general, and whether I feel it is a “fad” or not.

I would say that 3D isn’t a fad – it’s a feature that will be over-used in the near future. I expect we’ll see 3D in places that it should never be found. I’m sure that the adult entertainment industry is chomping at the bit. I don’t even want to think about that possibility, seriously. If anything drives technology forward, it’s them. Look at the history of their excessive use of tech that no one else really ever caught on to.

The idea of 3D in the home is long overdue. Having seen various movies in 3D, it was a seamless experience. I would welcome the ability to experience it in the comfort of my own home. It’s tricky because right now, 3D requires too many processes. You need the right signal, the right glasses and the right hardware. There’s too much that can impede the process.

At some point, most of the content distributed online (or from regular TV distribution channels) will cull a groundswell of support for 3D TV. With the proliferation of HD television, we’re still seeing media produced in the plain old format. There is still hardware being produced that doesn’t stack up and give you an HD experience.

It’s going to take awhile before 3D in the home catches on.

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Google TV Thoughts


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Someone in the live chat room asked me last night what my thoughts are about Google TV… bringing the Google experience to your television instead of just the Internet. It makes sense to me, given that Google owns YouTube. They are working with manufacturers to bring the Google TV experience into your homes around the world. Some people compare Apple TV to Google TV, and I don’t feel that’s exactly fair.

Apple has their content locked up in their Universe, much like iTunes itself. Google is more like “HEY! It’s out there, so let’s throw it in here!” It’s a more open approach to deliver content to your doorstep. The more interesting idea to me is Clicker.TV.

If you head over there right now, you’ll see a web experience that runs right within your web browser. You can navigate shows using your keyboard, instead of a mouse. The idea is that you could use a device connected to your television and control your experience without having to use an actual keyboard. What Clicker is doing is aggregating all of these shows you can find across the Internet. It’s an application that doesn’t rely on Flash. It runs off of HTML5, which is more open. Some of the videos themselves may run off of Flash, but not the interface itself. If you’re wondering what a Google TV experience may be like, check this out first. I have a feeling they’re going to be pretty close.

If anything, I think Google TV would compare favorably to Boxee. I expect a lot of development over the coming months (and even years) from Google with this idea, and I have a feeling it’s something that could end up in many of our homes before all is said and done.

What are your thoughts on Google TV, or even Apple TV? Do you feel these types of services are what we will be using in the future, instead of traditional cable or satellite programs?

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The Story of LOST Told by Cats

The people over at Tremendous News are going to miss the popular television show LOST. In case you may have missed out on watching it in the past, the team put together this awesome one-minute video. It purrrfectly describes the entire show, and the whole thing was done with adorable little kitty cats.

If you have been following the show all these years, good for you. Our friend Traci Toguchi played a role on there in season four. I had a fantastic time touring some of the sets in Hawaii, and almost felt as though I was a part of the show. Alas, I admit to not really watching it. I don’t watch a lot of television. Who has time for that these days?

Are you a LOST fan? Does this video come pretty close to resembling the show?

iPhone TV Show Streaming with MobiTV

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of MobiTV. All opinions are 100% mine.

Is it time to download the free MobiTV iPhone app? Perhaps these reasons are enough:

  • MobiTV provides full-length video entertainment, live or on-demand, without requiring long-term subscription plans. Programming from ESPN, MSNBC, Comedy Central, MTV, Disney, NBC, Nickelodeon, SyFy, and other major networks are available right now.
  • There are several preview channels available in the app right now – and, if nothing else, you should enjoy a couple of the free “Felix the Cat” cartoons through it. Well, at least *I* enjoyed them.
  • Like multitasking? You can browse for content in the app while you’re streaming something else. Moreover, it’s relatively easy to maneuver through the array of menus. If you do get lost, you won’t be for long – unless you’re wanting to watch full episodes of LOST (yes, available right now with your MobiTV subscription).
  • The entire service is only $9.99 a month, which is a fraction of what it would cost you to watch the same popular programming at home with satellite or cable television service. You can save a few bucks by opting for the 3 or 6 month subscription plan.
  • They’re giving away a brand new iPad to one of you reading this post. All you need to do is use Twitter to “tweet” a message containing the URL of this blog post [http://go.tagjag.com/mobitv] as well as the hashtag #MobiTV somewhere in it. The Grand Prize winner will be receiving an Apple iPad, and 5 second place winners will receive $10 iTunes Gift Cards (and, yes, the gift cards are comparable to purchasing a $9.95 one-month “Spring Season Pack” subscription to premium content programming on MobiTV).Be sure to read the official rules. You might also think about following @MobiTV on Twitter, too.

Visit my sponsor: Watch TV on your iPhone with MobiTV

There are hundreds of thousands of apps available for your iPhone – but how many of them can do what MobiTV does? Good luck finding a better deal that’s just as easy to use – and going the illegal route is never advised.

Samsung LED TV Review


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Some people ask what products I choose to buy myself to use in my home. This television is the latest acquisition of mine, and it’s one that I’m seriously happy with. This gorgeous TV is the Samsung 46″ 1080p LED HDTV. The picture is so much better than what this video will show you. It’s seriously crisp, clear and beautiful. This ultra-slim 46-inch LED HDTV boasts full HD 1080p resolution for the sharpest, smoothest picture possible.

This TV is so much more than just a television. It features Samsung’s new [email protected] online content service. Developed with Yahoo!, [email protected] uses either a wired or wireless Ethernet connection to access content onscreen from Yahoo!, Flickr, YouTube and more with the push of a button. The widget-based interface and scrollbar run along the bottom of the screen for easy browsing of the latest programs and content.

Samsung’s 1080p panel uses a new high-speed liquid crystal to cut response time to 4ms. The fast response time dramatically reduces motion blur and shudder. There’s a huge difference between seeing a game, and in seeing every single second of it. That’s where the new Auto Motion Plus 240Hz technology comes into play! All of the action – in every single frame – is analyzed and adjusted… nothing will get past you. This quadruples frame rates from 60 to 240 frames per second. No images are ever repeated to make more frames!

You bet your booty that I bought this little baby for myself, and it’s a purchase I could not regret. The price is actually fairly good, I think. It may seem expensive to you. However, do your research on other televisions of this type. You’re likely going to pay a lot more for them, and I honestly don’t think you’ll get a better experience than you would with this Samsung.

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