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The latest buzz on technology, downloads and viral videos.

Day-and-date streaming for college kids

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 25, 2008

Fox is trying to pull in college kids by streaming the series premiere of Fringe and season premiere of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles on Fox.com the same time that the shows air on TV. The catch is, they'll only be accessible to computers logging in through .edu addresses, according to VB sister publication Variety.

The idea was apparently the brainchild of content strategy senior VP Bill Bradford who noticed that college users are among the top visitors of Fox.com.

So now, even if college kids don't have a TV in their dorm, they can become fans of the shows online.

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Industries: VOD/Downloads

Image Strikes Fruitful Deal With Apple

Posted by Danny King on August 22, 2008

Consider it a good month for Image Entertainment.

Last week, the home-entertainment distributor of independent films such as Sidney Lumet’s Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead and The Air I Breathe said its sales for the most recently completed quarter were the highest in almost three years.

The news got better this week after the company struck a deal to distribu...Read More

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The Digital World is Flat, Unless You’re Google

Posted by Danny King on August 21, 2008

Warmer weather may have cooled off the downloads.

That’s what consultant Strategy Analytics reported this week when it said second-quarter digital-media sales grew less than a percent from the first quarter after a 3.3% rise for the prior quarter.

Even Apple’s perpetually growing iTunes service, whose sales were up 7.3% from a year earlier, fell during the quarter, the consultant said.

...Read More

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Blu-ray sale on Amazon

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 19, 2008

With price coming up time and time again as a barrier for consumers to adopt Blu-ray, Amazon looks to be positioning itself as a format savior. The etailer is running a 50% off sale on select Blu-ray titles through Aug. 29.

The sale lists such A-list titles as the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, National Treasure and Signs for $19.95. Crash is priced at $17.95 and Halloween at $15.95.

Sure, they're older titles. But Blu-ray's still a new format, so old is still new if it's not yet in your library.

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Industries: High-Def, Retail

WB.com launching Aug. 27

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 18, 2008

WB.com will go online officially Aug. 27, streaming old shows such as Friends as well as new shows created just for the online site, according to VB sister publication Variety.

Among the other shows that are already on DVD that will stream at WB.com are Firefly, Veronica Mars, Everwood, Gilmore Girls, One Tree Hill, Roswell, Smallville, In Living Color, Angel and Babylon 5.

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Teenager online with chats

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 12, 2008

A teen's two favorite things: TV and chatting with friends. Beginning tomorrow, ABC Family's The Secret Life of the American Teenager will be online for their viewing pleasure with the added benefit of real-time chats.

VB sister publication Multichannel News has the scoop, but basically, fans can schedule online viewing parties with friends then chat with them as they all watch online with some help from Lycos.

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Entourage and X-Play on download

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 12, 2008

HBO has put the first two seasons of its popular series Entourage on iTunes starting today, with episodes priced at $1.99. The third season will be available starting Aug. 18 and the fourth starting Aug. 26, all leading up to season five bowing on HBO on Sept. 7.

Meanwhile, iTunes competitor Xbox Live has pacted with G4 to offer videogame series X-Play for download on Microsoft's site.

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Viewers to Olympic Web Sites Flow, Videos Not So Much

Posted by Danny King on August 11, 2008

While it may be nearly impossible for computer users with older browsers or slower connections (like me, for instance) to find a clean video replay of last night’s insanely exciting 4 x 100 swimming relay, that hasn’t stopped people from flocking to Olympics-related Web sites to get their fix of the Summer Games in Beijing.

Sites like NBC Olympics and Yahoo Olympics saw their viewership almost triple between the day before the Aug. 8 opening ceremonies and the day after the ceremonies, according to a report by Nielsen Online.

More than 7.3 mil...Read More

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1 down for downloads

Posted by Samantha Clark on August 4, 2008

Video downloading scored a victory Friday when the FCC ruled that Internet companies, Comcast in particular, can't block or slow online traffic. (Read VB sister publication Variety's report. So, users will be able to download all they like.

The FCC also ruled that ISP can, and are encouraged to, police their Web usage for illegal downloads, which is also good news for the studios and download retailers.

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Industries: VOD/Downloads

Nick shows on iTunes

Posted by Samantha Clark on July 30, 2008

Nickelodeon has signed a deal to put episodes of '90s and early 2000s programming on iTunes, including Rugrats, Doug, Rocket Power and The Wild Thornberrys. And the supplier is reportedly hoping the exposure will attract older viewers, according to VB sister publication Broadcasting & Cable.

Episodes are selling for $1.99 each, with season and best-of sets selling for $8.99 to $11.99.

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Cyrus a hit on Starz

Posted by Samantha Clark on July 29, 2008

Starz scored a pre-DVD window for Disney's Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert in 3D, and it apparently paid off.

VB sister publication Multichannel News reported that the concert was TV's biggest show Saturday night.

The concert reportedly doubled the viewers of Disney's previous highest-rated concert, by the Cheetah Girls in 2006. Multichannel News said Hannah "attracted 2.22 million kids 6 to 11 and 1.79 million tweens 9 to 14."

The concert will bow on DVD and Blu-ray on Aug. 19. It should be a big hit. We'll see if the early VOD window hurt sales.

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CBS goes high-def online, gets more TV viewers

Posted by Samantha Clark on July 25, 2008

CBS is embracing online video even more. This week is launched the CBS HD Gallery, offering high-def clips and full episodes of shows including CSI, Survivor, How I Met Your Mother, Big Brother, The Amazing Race and The Big Bang Theory.

Better yet, CBS scored an exclusive sponsor, Intel, so the content is streamed for free -- with ads for Intel, of course.

It's understandable that CBS would be so gung-ho about online video. A "CBS Audience Network" study by Magid Media Labs found that online viewing drives more viewers to network TV.

Here's the study's key findings:

  • The median age of those streaming full episodes of CBS programming online is 38 years. 
...Read More

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Industries: VOD/Downloads



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