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An Apple a Day Keeps Commercials Away!

While not directly related to Cutting the Cord, Apple’s latest patent work certainly moves towards giving you a little more control over your TV viewing experience. The Commercial Killing Patent explains a process to automatically switch between broadcast media and locally stored media. While the process description begins with discussing  radio broadcast as subject example, language referencing video is clearly present throughout the Patent.  How fantastic would it be to have previously selected content displayed in place of that Erectile  Disfunction commercial that just interrupted your Sunday night Football game!

This Commercial Killing Patent from Apple would definitely change our media consumption experience, if it ever get’s to market.  So the question is, Would you miss watching commercials?

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NFL Sunday Ticket 2012 on PS3

Play Station 3 get’s the NFL Sunday Ticket for 2012!

Ohh sorry, that was 2011. Why are they making us wait!  What about 2012?  The internet is a-buzz with people everywhere looking for information on the 2012 NFL Sunday Ticket’s availability for the Play Station 3, similar to the 2011 arrangement  For those of us who have become accustomed to watching sports online without cable, the PS3 / NFL marriage was a beautiful thing! With games starting in just weeks, and still no news on this from the NFL or Sony, there’s still time in game to make something happen but both teams (Sony the NFL) will have to move fast.   In the event that all Sony and the NFL can’t work things out, you can always just buy and install your own HDTV Antenna to watch the games in your local DMA.

Trust we are watching this closely and will update you if news breaks.  Maybe there’s a new player coming into the game…Roku anyone?  Com’on NFL, we’re all waiting with baited breathe.

Update: Ok good, everything is squared away now for PS3 owners, the NFL App is available for download now. I don’t know why they treat the availability of this app with such secrecy each year? At any rate, we can all carry on with our regularly scheduled games.

How will you watch the 2012 Sunday Ticket?

What are your plans for watching the Sunday Ticket this season?  Please let us know in the comment section below.  We appreciate your comments and suggestions.


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Roku sticks it to cable…again!

Roku is playing in the big leagues with todays announcement from major panel manufactures stating they will comply with MHL implementation standards and provide support for the forthcoming Roku Streaming Stick. Due to be released later this year, the Streaming Stick takes advantage of the MHL port, not the HDMI port, on newish TV’s. Check out the MHL Compatibility Site for a full listing of compatible televisions. This list is updated regularly, so check back if you don’t see the set your looking for at the time. Expect several more “B” and “C” panel dealers to show up on the list soon.

This new device, first debuted at the CES, will allow your MHL equipped television to play with services like Hulu Plus, HBO and the like without relying on the internals of the TV to keep up with streaming set top box technology. Chas Smith of Roku, said “The Roku Streaming Stick adds instant access to the leading streaming platform with virtually no overhead from manufacturers, while giving consumers the best streaming experience available” This is a big plus with the rate of change we are seeing in televisions and set top boxes.

Roku Stick

The Roku Streaming Stick (credit:Roku)

For the techno hungry folks, here’s a few tidbits from wiki on the MHL specifications as they relate to HDMI.
-Power is transmitted thru the cable, unlike HDMI. Typically used for charging a mobile device or powering a MHL to HDMI dongle
- Resolution limited to 1080P
-Typical MHL connector is a micro USB, same as found on many mobile devices (hurry up Apple I now you’re working on it)
-Interoperability of devices guaranteed thru use of the HDTV remote control thru the CEC feature

So what does all of this mean to you? Basically, if you are in the market for a TV, make sure it’s on the list of compatible devices. This ensures you will be able to partake of the MHL/Roku goodness that’s to come with the Roku Streaming Stick release later this year and stream your favorite premium content shows to your new TV.

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Hulu Plus brings new shows to Apple TV starting today!

Starting today, Apple TV owners can watch Hulu Plus on their big screen, including Hulu’s premium content.    Apple added the Hulu Plus icon to the home screen sometime in the past 48 hours, putting the service front and center for Apple TV users.   This addition of the Hulu lineup, at $7.99 per month, includes major networks like ABC, NBC and FOX to name a few.

Hulu has been a hold-out in joining Apple TV for some time, but with the broad reach of Apple’s AirPlay (Mountain Lion) it seems Hulu’s hand has been forced in their “by device” methodology approach to the market.   AirPlay is the Gigawidget of TV.  Wirelessly “Beam” content to your 60″ TV connected to your Apple TV, from your laptop!  This makes your laptop quiet a proficient television remote control.

This latest hardware partnership between Apple and Hulo rounded out the already robust lineup of hardware partners including Netgear, RCA, Samsung and many Android powered devices.    Tim Cook is clearing the  way to make Apple TV the preferred ecosystem for Premium Content providers.  And still somehow, Google TV is left in the cold.

To get started, go to Hulu on your computer and sign up for your account. Then straight to your Apple TV to watch Family Guy, The Office, Gossip Girl and more.

None of this makes Hulu Plus / Apple TV “The Single Solution” to well rounded TV viewing, but it sure does pave a few more steps in the path to Kicking Out Cable!


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Roku Adds Live Pay-per-view UFC Fights

The centerpiece of the deal is streaming live pay-per-view events in HD, but the UFC channel will also offer an archive of classic fights, training and countdown videos, un-aired prelims from the live shows, special event shows, and more.
Dan Moren, Macworld

Cord-cutting fans of the UFC rejoice! The Ultimate Fighting Championship has recently inked a deal with Roku to stream live UFC fights right to your Roku box. Much of the content will be free or you’ll need to sign up for a UFC Vault subscription ($60 for six months). Individual fights can be purchased  for $2 each and pay-per-view fights or on-demand archives of recent events will be $45.

Here’s how to get started with the UFC Roku Channel.

Tip of the hat to Thomas for sending this in.

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Apple TV Now Streams Live MLB and NBA Games

Watch on the Apple TV

You can now stream your favorite MLB Baseball games to your Apple TV

Baseball season and the NBA playoffs are right around the corner and the Apple TV has a nice little surprise in store for all its fans. (subscription required) and NBA Live (subscription required) will now stream live games and updates directly to your Apple TV. This functionality is hard coded into the latest 4.3 version of the Apple TV software and is not an app like other Apple devices.

Baseball, Basketball and Hockey have been available for a while now on the Roku and Boxee platforms, but this is a first for Apple.

There has been speculation for a while now that Apple will allow apps on the Apple TV. Technically, this isn’t, but could these baby steps lead to more sports or streaming content outside of Netflix and iTunes?

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Purchase and Rent Movies on Facebook

Watch movies on Facebook

Watch movies on Facebook starting with "The Dark Knight"

Warner Brothers announced recently that they are beginning to test purchasing and renting a select number of movies through Facebook. The first offering from WB is “The Dark Knight” which is available to rent for 30 Facebook credits or approximately $3.

Users will be able to watch the movie online through their Facebook page for up to 48 hours after purchase with the ability to pause, resume or watch the movie full screen. Fans will also be able to interact with the movie, leaving comments or posting status updates about the mshows they’re currently watching.

What’s your take? Would you watch a movie on Facebook if the price was right? Do you think Facebook can contend with the likes of iTunes and Netflix?

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