OTT Service Cheddar Now On the Cable Dial with New Deals

Cheddar, which debuted as a streaming service focused on financial news, just went live on Denver-based cable/broadband provider WOW. The company originally launched as a cable TV disruptor, but now is available to half of WOW’s 800,000 subscribers, in Alabama, Florida and Michigan. Cheddar also inked a deal with the National Cable Television Cooperative, which represents 840 small U.S. cable operators with 8 million households. This deal allows those smaller cable operators to include Cheddar in their packages. Continue reading OTT Service Cheddar Now On the Cable Dial with New Deals

Sling TV Expands Cloud DVR Access in Early Access Program

Dish’s Sling TV is rolling out its new Cloud DVR to customers with Amazon devices through an early access program. The feature has been in private beta for Roku users since November. While one potential advantage of the cloud is never running out of storage space, “Sling TV isn’t offering infinite storage or even different storage capacities,” reports TechCrunch. “Instead, ‘First Look’ customers pay an extra $5 per month for up to 50 hours of storage, with no expiration on those programs. When capacity runs out, the oldest ‘watched’ recordings are removed first, to make room for others.” Sling TV’s Cloud DVR also allows users to record multiple programs simultaneously (although limited based on rights deals with broadcasters). Continue reading Sling TV Expands Cloud DVR Access in Early Access Program

Caavo Connects All Your Apps, Devices and Content Platforms

Caavo is a $399 savvy middleware box that connects content to virtually any device. Featuring eight HDMI ports and software that automatically configures to any device, Caavo offers a universal remote control with touchscreen and buttons, and works with Alexa (Google Assistant and Siri are soon to come). Caavo is designed to make watching a range of content on many different devices a seamless affair. The company was founded by Andrew Einaudi, Ashish Aggarwal and the late Blake Krikorian (who also co-founded Sling Media).  Continue reading Caavo Connects All Your Apps, Devices and Content Platforms

Time Warner Invests in Hulu with Plans to Join Pay TV Service

Time Warner announced it is investing $583 million for a 10 percent stake in Hulu, joining forces with existing owners Disney, 21st Century Fox and Comcast’s NBCUniversal. However, Time Warner does not plan to offer its television programming via the current version of Hulu’s video service, which features repeats of recently aired shows. Instead, the media giant will license its content for the new pay TV service that Hulu plans to launch in 2017. That means channels such as Cartoon Network, CNN, TBS, TNT and Turner Classic Movies would be available to viewers through the planned live TV service. Continue reading Time Warner Invests in Hulu with Plans to Join Pay TV Service

Unplugged: YouTube’s Online TV Service Expected Next Year

YouTube has been developing an online TV service for today’s cord cutters, expected to launch early in 2017, and has reportedly been working on deals with ABC, CBS, ESPN and other major broadcasters. However, the video platform may pass on smaller cable networks, in hopes of creating YouTube channels with related video content. In May, Bloomberg reported that the $35-per-month service would be called Unplugged and could include smaller bundles of add-on channels. “Online TV services are still young, and there’s plenty of market for YouTube to go after,” suggests The Verge, noting that current obstacles include the availability of networks on services such as Sling, and the emergence of standalone services from CBS and soon, ESPN. Continue reading Unplugged: YouTube’s Online TV Service Expected Next Year

Aereo Competitors Moving In Following Supreme Court Ruling

The Supreme Court ruled against Aereo in a case brought by TV networks, citing violation of copyright laws. Aereo, which provided an Internet-based alternative to cable by capturing broadcast signals on tiny antennas and transmitting them to subscribers, has since suspended its operations. Meanwhile, rivals such as Simple.TV and Mohu are moving in, and hope to avoid the ruling by selling over-the-air antennas to their subscribers along with hardware to access streaming services. Continue reading Aereo Competitors Moving In Following Supreme Court Ruling

Virtual Joey: DISH Debuts New App That Functions Like DVR

Satellite provider DISH Network announced that it has developed a new streaming app, dubbed the “Virtual Joey,” that provides the same functionality as its Hopper DVR for LG Smart TVs. The app, expected to launch in the first quarter, offers control of the whole-home HD DVR, including live TV, recorded content and navigation via the program guide. The smart TV app essentially takes the place of a physical Joey multi-room extender, but still requires a Hopper DVR as the anchor. Continue reading Virtual Joey: DISH Debuts New App That Functions Like DVR

CES 2014: TV Everywhere and Tech Beyond the End of the Cord

With numerous reports showing that the trend of cord-cutting continued to accelerate during 2013, despite the fact that pay TV revenue growth remains strong, the ETCentric reporting team in Las Vegas will be looking for innovative or disruptive products and services that may impact the current television business model. Currently, 14 percent of U.S. broadband households are using some sort of video streaming media device, with the various models of Roku being the most popular. Continue reading CES 2014: TV Everywhere and Tech Beyond the End of the Cord

Is New Google Chromecast All About the Future of Pay TV?

During yesterday’s breakfast event unveiling Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet, the company also announced the $35 Chromecast, a small thumbnail device that connects to televisions via HDMI and enables users to send content via Wi-Fi from phones, tablets or PCs to the TV screen. Chromecast comes with three months of free Netflix and offers more functionality than Apple TV’s AirPlay. “On paper at least, it’s the best device Google has ever announced,” suggests Wired. Continue reading Is New Google Chromecast All About the Future of Pay TV?