FAA Proposes Long-Awaited Rules on Commercial Drone Use

Over the weekend, the Federal Aviation Administration proposed rules for the commercial use of small drones (unmanned aircraft weighing up to 55 pounds), that could have an impact on future film and television production, still photography, sports coverage, product deliveries, and much more. The proposed regulations call for operator certification, daylight flights only, and keeping aircraft in sight. The rules would not apply to recreational drones, growing in popularity with hobbyists, which have their own regulations. Continue reading FAA Proposes Long-Awaited Rules on Commercial Drone Use

Samsung Sets High Goals for Future of Tizen-Powered TVs

Samsung has ambitious plans for its Tizen operating system, which the South Korean manufacturer is promoting as an alternative to Google’s Android. After launching an affordable mobile phone powered by Tizen in India, Samsung’s next goal is to equip half of all its TV sets with the Tizen operating system this year. At CES this month, Samsung said it aims to sell 60 millions TVs in 2015, 30 million of which would be powered by Tizen. The company hopes that by 2017, all of its Internet-connected TVs will be Tizen-enabled sets. Continue reading Samsung Sets High Goals for Future of Tizen-Powered TVs

CES: DTS Demos New Format That Offers Object-Based Audio

At CES, DTS demonstrated its new DTS:X codec that separates audio into objects rather than traditional channels (for example: dialogue or gunshots, instead of left, right, front, rear). The immersive sound technology is similar to Dolby Atmos, but DTS:X keeps dialogue separate, so the volume can be controlled independently during viewing. The company showed how DTS:X works with a television’s built-in speakers by screening a soccer match and switching audio between teams, sideline microphones and broadcast announcers. Continue reading CES: DTS Demos New Format That Offers Object-Based Audio

Twitter Introduces its Plan to Sell Ads on Other Apps and Sites

Twitter has plans to generate additional revenue from video ads that may be viewable by inactive participants of the social network. There are millions of people that have access to tweets all over the Web without being registered with their own Twitter accounts. Twitter’s new plans include selling ads within the streams of tweets that appear on other apps and sites. Twitter reportedly detailed its proposed initiative to media buyers at the 2015 International CES in Las Vegas. Continue reading Twitter Introduces its Plan to Sell Ads on Other Apps and Sites

Smart Home Push Continues, Despite Slow Consumer Adoption

Numerous tech giants, startups and telecoms have recently introduced new smart home products, hubs, sensors and apps, yet consumer adoption has been comparatively slow, as people take their time getting comfortable with the concept. However, that did not slow manufacturers such as Samsung, LG and Whirlpool from demonstrating new connected appliances at CES. And while major players including Google, Lowe’s, Apple and others continue to push various smart home solutions, progress of the digital home has so far been incremental. Continue reading Smart Home Push Continues, Despite Slow Consumer Adoption

Intel Promotes its RealSense 3D Camera Technology at CES

At CES, a wide range of companies showed or discussed products that are becoming more aware of their surroundings, largely due to improved sensors. This will enable tablets, phones, cars, drones and other devices to interact with people and each other in more sophisticated ways. This could also require significant upgrades to camera tech. While Microsoft’s Kinect sensor for Xbox was built to use gestures for game control, the tech has proven more far-reaching, especially in robotics research. Now Intel is aiming to take the next step with 3D sensors. Continue reading Intel Promotes its RealSense 3D Camera Technology at CES

DJI Inspire 1 Flying Platform: 4K Dual Control Drone System

At CES in Las Vegas, DJI introduced a really well thought out production tool — the new Inspire 1 flying platform. With a transforming aerodynamic shape, the ship moves the landing gear up and away from the camera allowing the operator an unprecedented motion-compensated, unobstructed view of the scene below. The modular camera/gimbal support system can be removed for transport and future upgrades. It can even be used with an accessory hand mount to become an instant steady camera system. Continue reading DJI Inspire 1 Flying Platform: 4K Dual Control Drone System

CES: Melomind Aids Relaxation with Mind-Controlled Audio

Paris-based myBrain Technologies introduced its first product at CES this week — the audio-based stress reducer Melomind. The electroencephalograph (EEG)-measuring headset connects to your phone and gives an indication of your “stress level” recorded in real time. The accompanying app then chooses a selection of music composed by the team’s sound designers to improve and control the user’s mental state. The 15-minute relaxation sessions help teach the users how to relax by employing their brain activity to modulate the music. Continue reading CES: Melomind Aids Relaxation with Mind-Controlled Audio

FCC Chair Hints That Broadband is Likely To Be Reclassified

Speaking at CES, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler hinted that the agency could reclassify broadband as a public utility (telecommunications service). Those in opposition of such a move, fearing increased federal regulation, include the broadband industry as well as some Republican lawmakers and conservative groups. Wheeler also accused broadcasters of slowing plans for spectrum auctions. While he remains optimistic that auctions would still begin next year, he expressed disappointment “that the broadcasters have slowed things down by filing suit.” Continue reading FCC Chair Hints That Broadband is Likely To Be Reclassified

Epson Moverio BT-200 Making Strides Toward Immersive AR

Several augmented reality devices debuted at CES this week, but Epson’s Moverio BT-200 offers one of the more complete experiences to-date. The glasses run Android 4.0 from a wired smartphone-like controller and provide a full-color image in the center of the user’s field of view. Sensors for the device include a camera, accelerometer, gyroscope, microphone and compass. The product is not consumer ready, but priced at less than half that of Google Glass ($699.99), it is a promising platform for developers to build an app library for AR. Continue reading Epson Moverio BT-200 Making Strides Toward Immersive AR

IK Multimedia Showcases iRig Mic Field for Audio and Video

IK Multimedia is shipping its $100 iRig Mic Field — a tiny stereo condenser field microphone that faces two ways. The company says it is the first such ultra-compact solution for field recording on the iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. The iRig Mic Field is an easy way to record high quality interviews or video. It features a rotatable enclosure that works in landscape or portrait mode, especially useful for video with Lightning connector equipped devices. Additionally, the iRig Recorder app is available on the iTunes Store. Continue reading IK Multimedia Showcases iRig Mic Field for Audio and Video

ChargerLeash Demos Line of Smart Charging Cable at CES

ChargerLeash showed its smart charging cables at CES that sound off when you unplug your phone or tablet to remind you not to forget your charging device. They support a wide range of phones and tablets by measuring the specific high and low current states and alarm when they see the power use cease. Equipped with a sleep button for times that you want to leave the cable attached, it is easily possible to turn off the alarm with a simple touch. The company was promoting its Gen 2 Pro Series line. Continue reading ChargerLeash Demos Line of Smart Charging Cable at CES

CES: Broadcasters and Execs Gather at 2nd Screen Summit

The 2nd Screen Society — formed to address the companion screen viewing of TV and home entertainment — hosted the 2nd Screen Summit on January 5 during CES. Television network, production and creative tech execs gathered at the Encore Las Vegas to discuss this year’s theme — It’s all about the data: “Data is going to be the currency that fuels the entertainment industry in the years ahead and 2nd screen will be the way that data is collected.” The event featured a series of thought-provoking keynote discussions and panels. Continue reading CES: Broadcasters and Execs Gather at 2nd Screen Summit

Netflix to Introduce High Dynamic Range to its 4K Streaming

During the LG press conference at CES earlier this week, Netflix announced that it plans to introduce high dynamic range (HDR) to its 4K UHD streaming sometime this year. While a specific timeline was not revealed, it is expected that the HDR streaming will coincide with the launch of LG’s much talked about OLED TVs. Netflix support for HDR was also announced with Sony; the company’s X900C ultra-thin UHD TV showcased at CES will run on the new Android TV platform and provide access to Netflix 4K. Continue reading Netflix to Introduce High Dynamic Range to its 4K Streaming

CES: UTA Talks the Importance of Social Data in Hollywood

United Talent Agency has developed a measurement tool to track and rank movies based on the social media buzz they accrue in the 365 days up until the film’s release date. Using data provided by Twitter, UTA determines and assigns a ranking for every move on a scale of 1-100. For 2014, UTA observed a pattern by which higher ranked movies outperformed lower ranked movies at the box office. The correlation between a movie’s social media numbers and box office performance however, does not imply causation. Continue reading CES: UTA Talks the Importance of Social Data in Hollywood

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