IMAX 3.0 Underway with Acquisition of Streaming Tech Firm

IMAX Corp. has acquired SSIMWAVE, a leader in AI-driven video streaming solutions for $21 million in a mostly cash deal. Ontario-based SSIMWAVE lists Disney, Paramount Global and Warner Bros. Discovery among those currently using its technology, which lets streaming and broadcast providers deliver what IMAX says is “the best possible image” to any device for on-demand and live video. The move marks a significant expansion of IMAX’s strategy to deliver its own super-sized content at the highest quality to a variety of screens, including phones. As a service, SSIMWAVE fits IMAX’s financial strategy to generate new, recurring revenue. Continue reading IMAX 3.0 Underway with Acquisition of Streaming Tech Firm

Paramount+ Adds Showtime in Single App at Special Pricing

Paramount+ is now available with Showtime in a single app. Paramount+ subscribers can upgrade their package to include the premium cable channel’s content at discounted pricing through October 2. Paramount Global had been selling a Paramount+ and Showtime bundle for the past year, but the content had to be accessed through separate apps. The promotional pricing sees Paramount+ with Showtime available to U.S. subscribers at $7.99 per month with ads, the Essential Plan, representing a discount of 33 percent, and $12.99 per month ad-free under the Premium Plan, for 13 percent off from the regular bundle pricing. Continue reading Paramount+ Adds Showtime in Single App at Special Pricing

Sony Line of Gaming Peripherals Aim for Market Beyond PS5

Sony Electronics is launching a new line of monitors and headphones under the brand name INZONE, which has drawn notice for being marketed to gamers but manufactured by a division other than Sony Interactive Entertainment, home of the PlayStation and related products. That’s because the INZONE line is designed to be platform agnostic and seeks traction beyond PS5. The headphones come in three models touting 360 Spatial Sound for Gaming: the entry-level wired H3 for $100 and the wireless H7 and H9 ($230 and $300, respectively). INZONE’s debut monitor line features the deluxe 27-inch 4K M9 ($900) and the 27-inch Full HD M3 ($530).
Continue reading Sony Line of Gaming Peripherals Aim for Market Beyond PS5

Groundbreaking Samsung Game Monitor Hits Shelves in June

Samsung’s groundbreaking Odyssey Neo G8 gaming monitor will be released in the U.S. in June priced at $1,499. With a 240Hz refresh rate, the monitor is well above the usual 144Hz standard. Samsung announced the Odyssey Neo G8 at CES 2022, revealing that the gaming monitor would offer 4K picture quality on a 31.5-inch Quantum Mini LED panel arced at a 1000R curve. New details have emerged for the DisplayHDR 1000 certified monitor, including 1,196 individual backlight zones resulting in a dynamic contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1 and 4,096 steps for brightness control. Continue reading Groundbreaking Samsung Game Monitor Hits Shelves in June

8K Slow to Take Hold in Homes but Transforming Production

At NAB 2022 in Las Vegas, 8K sets hinted at a home viewing revolution. With 16 times the resolution of HD and four times the 4K screens currently in about 44 percent of U.S. households, the 8K experience represents a leap in immersive viewing. Sony, LG and TCL have been selling 8K sets, but globally only 1 million were purchased. But there are ways 8K is being put to use today to benefit a variety of end-use cases. Virtual production and virtual reality are two instances where content displayed in 4K or HD still benefits from the higher-resolution capture, while 8K also offers added flexibility in post production. Continue reading 8K Slow to Take Hold in Homes but Transforming Production

Cablers Comcast, Charter Team to Launch Streaming Devices

Cable giants Comcast and Charter Communications have joined forces to offer set-top boxes for video streaming, pooling their combined reach to take on established players like Amazon, Apple, Roku and Google. The newly formed joint venture plans to develop and offer a next-generation streaming platform leveraging Comcast’s Flex technology, which includes voice search. “Our new venture will bring a full-featured operating platform, new devices, and smart TVs with a robust app store providing a more streamlined and aggregated experience for the customer,” said Charter chairman and CEO Tom Rutledge.  Continue reading Cablers Comcast, Charter Team to Launch Streaming Devices

New CineBeam Models Are Most Advanced LG 4K Projectors

LG has unveiled two new 4K HDR projectors that the company says are its most advanced models to date. Both the LG CineBeam HU715Q and HU710P feature 2,000,000:1 contrast ratios. With a retail price of $2,500, the HU710P uses a hybrid laser-LED light source that doesn’t require a color wheel and can pump up to 2,000 lumens of brightness. The $3,000 HU715Q ultra short-throw (UST) relies only on laser light, producing up to 2,500 lumens. Both projectors are designed for indoors, but LG says they’ll also work outside after sundown. Continue reading New CineBeam Models Are Most Advanced LG 4K Projectors

Sony Reveals Design Features of Its PlayStation VR2 Headset

Sony Interactive Entertainment has shared the design of its new virtual reality headset, the PlayStation VR2, and revealed some new design details of the PlayStation VR2 Sense controller. White with black accents, like the PlayStation 5, the PS VR2 headset continues the “orb” look of the PS VR2 Sense controller, whose circular look is intended to reflect the “360-degree view that players feel when they enter the virtual reality world,” according to the company. The VR2 is slimmer and lighter than its predecessor, and adds a lens adjustment dial to optimize the view and new side vents. Continue reading Sony Reveals Design Features of Its PlayStation VR2 Headset

CES: Updated Drone Tech Offers Possibilities for Production

While drone announcements failed to generate the same buzz during CES 2022 as in previous years, several new products should be of interest to consumers and professionals, especially those in photography, video and movie production. In addition to demonstrations of hydrogen fuel cell tech promising increased flying time and new underwater micro-ROVs touting a range of enterprise applications, CES included affordable feature-rich drones such as Autel Robotics’ Dragonfish with built-in 4K video and 50X optical zoom; Skydio’s self-flying drone, geared toward cinematographers; and Sony’s Airpeak S1, the smallest drone to support a full-size mirrorless Alpha camera. Continue reading CES: Updated Drone Tech Offers Possibilities for Production

CES: New Ultra Portable Projectors Stand Out at Trade Show

Several ultra portable projectors were on display at CES 2022. Among the more interesting short throw models were products from Anker, Hisense, Samsung and XGIMI, although the show also featured a range of projector types from the likes of BenQ, JVC, Panasonic, Vankyo and ViewSonic. Generating the most buzz in the short throw category was Samsung’s $899 projector, The Freestyle, that can project from 30 to 100 inches and comes equipped with a 1080p HDR-capable view and 360-degree audio. Also drawing media attention was Anker’s upcoming Nebula Cosmos Laser, which comes in 4K ($2,199) and 1080p ($1,599) versions, and is expected to ship by late March. Continue reading CES: New Ultra Portable Projectors Stand Out at Trade Show

CES: TCL 8K QLED X925 Pro Comes in a Very Thin Package

TCL, the No. 2 TV-maker in the world after Samsung, raised the curtain on a new flagship model at CES 2022. The X925 Pro is a super-thin, 85-inch, 8K Google TV powered by the company’s own flavor of Mini-LED, featuring OD-Zero technology. Measuring just 10mm thick — half that of some competing models — the 8K display has local dimming, QLED color, a built-in webcam for video chats, 120Hz refresh rate and, to make gamers happy, variable refresh rate (VRR). The Google TV OS enables hands-free “Hey, Google” voice commands. The X925 Pro touts numerous high-end touches and has a $10,000 price to match. Continue reading CES: TCL 8K QLED X925 Pro Comes in a Very Thin Package

CES: Sony Touts 8K, QD-OLED TVs, Bravia Cam for Gestures

TVs continue to gain computer functionality as Sony borrows a page from the monitor playbook by adding camera functionality to models in the 2022 Bravia XR lineup introduced at CES 2022. The Z9K Mini-LED (8K) and A95K HDR OLED (4K) will ship with Bravia Cam, which adds video chat and gesture control. The camera will also help with brightness settings, dialogue emphasis and sound balance by tracking the viewer’s position with regard to the screen. Bravia Cam is an option on other 4K models, including the X95K Mini-LED series, A90K and A80K OLED models, and the X90K LED. Continue reading CES: Sony Touts 8K, QD-OLED TVs, Bravia Cam for Gestures

CES: Samsung Promises QD-OLED Details in ‘Several Weeks’

Samsung announced a dazzling lineup of TVs at CES 2022, including the ultimate MicroLED, which one writer called “110 inches of entertainment insanity,” with a $150,000 price tag to match. The Neo QLED line and Lifestyle TVs also impressed. But one model generating a lot of attention wasn’t introduced as part of the company’s 2022 lineup. Rather, the Samsung Electronics QD-OLED that quietly earned the company a CES 2022 Innovation Award launched speculation as to whether Samsung was about to enter a race with Sony to get the first consumer QD-OLED to market. Continue reading CES: Samsung Promises QD-OLED Details in ‘Several Weeks’

CES: Nuvyyo Showcases Its New Tablo ATSC 3.0 Quad DVR

Canadian electronics and app firm Nuvyyo has introduced an ATSC 3.0-compatible over-the-air DVR that also receives existing OTA signals. The Tablo ATSC 3.0 Quad HDMI hybrid DVR records up to four channels simultaneously and accepts external hard drives of up to 8TB. The Tablo connects to any TV antenna and television, monitor or modem with an HDMI port. However, unlike other Nuvyyo network DVRs this Tablo model does not support the live streaming or sharing to other displays of recorded OTA content. Nuvyyo says for optimum performance the Tablo ATSC 3.0 Quad should be connected to a 4K HDR television. Continue reading CES: Nuvyyo Showcases Its New Tablo ATSC 3.0 Quad DVR

CES: TV, Audio and Drone Tech Make a Splash at Central Hall

ETC’s George Gerba and Don Levy spent Thursday navigating the Las Vegas Convention Center’s Central Hall looking for unique products from major exhibitors at CES 2022 that would be of special interest to the entertainment industry. They found a Hisense ultra-short throw projection TV, a Samsung TV with an adjustment capability that would be useful in-camera as well, Fraunhofer tech for adjusting the volume of dialog separately from other audio in a consumer device, a winged drone with impressive flight duration and speed, and a few other products of note. Continue reading CES: TV, Audio and Drone Tech Make a Splash at Central Hall