Twitter and Facebook to Battle for Second Screen Ad Dollars

Twitter is targeting second screens with a strategy that focuses on the intersection of video and data. The company has reportedly been meeting with agencies and brands this year, including several meetings held during CES, to showcase its ad product road map. Those who met with Twitter signed non-disclosure agreements and could not discuss upcoming products, but the strategy is believed to be bullish on video and data, and a counter to Facebook’s recent push into video. Continue reading Twitter and Facebook to Battle for Second Screen Ad Dollars

Phablets Poised to Become Multibillion Dollar Market by 2018

Phablets — smartphones with screens larger than 5.5 inches — could grow to become a multibillion dollar market in the coming years. Initially ridiculed by some analysts, the ‘phone-tablets’ are experiencing unexpected success with consumers in global regions such as East Asia. Juniper Research forecasts phablet shipments will increase by 100 million units over the next four years (20 million shipped last year). By 2018, Juniper expects manufacturers to ship 120 million units per year. Continue reading Phablets Poised to Become Multibillion Dollar Market by 2018

Netflix Joins European Cable Boxes, Targets U.S. Operators

Although Netflix apps are currently offered on over 1,000 devices, they have been absent from cable boxes. This week, Netflix launched an app on Swedish TiVo boxes used by the cable operator Com Hem, which allows viewers to see Netflix’s catalog adjacent to live TV programming. The video service announced a similar deal with cable operator Virgin in the U.K. last year, and is working with Waoo in Denmark. Netflix is looking to pair with U.S. cable operators before the end of this year. Continue reading Netflix Joins European Cable Boxes, Targets U.S. Operators

Amazon Dedicates Resources to Draw Mobile Game Developers

While it is unclear if Amazon will release an Android-based gaming device besides the Kindle tablet, the company has been creating tools aimed at making game developers successful across Amazon’s various app platforms. The company launched its updated portal for app and game developers, and has been investing in tools for developers to create more Android games. Amazon now features more than 100,000 apps in its Android Appstore, a significant increase from one year ago. Continue reading Amazon Dedicates Resources to Draw Mobile Game Developers

VIDAA: Hisense Unveils its Android-Based Smart TV Platform

At CES, Hisense showed its new line of VIDAA smart TVs, the first to incorporate Android since Google TV ceased to formally exist. The new displays come after Google scrapped the manufacturing of its own display and began allowing other manufacturers to build TVs with built-in Android technology. Google services like Chrome and TV programming guide Primetime are available on the displays. The platform was developed by Ontario-based design and engineering company Jamdeo. Continue reading VIDAA: Hisense Unveils its Android-Based Smart TV Platform

Internet of Things: Google to Buy Nest Labs for $3.2 Billion

Google is making a run for the connected home. On Monday, the company announced it is acquiring Nest Labs, a maker of smart smoke alarms and thermostats, for $3.2 billion. This is Google’s second largest acquisition to date, behind the 2012 purchase of phone maker Motorola Mobility. Nest Labs is considered a poster child for the Internet of Things movement, a key focus of last week’s CES in Las Vegas, where companies showcased sensor, communication, and computing tech to make everyday life easier.  Continue reading Internet of Things: Google to Buy Nest Labs for $3.2 Billion

Will Consumers See Any Real Need for a Curved TV Display?

Curved TVs were a hot topic at this year’s CES, and many of them were promoted as giving a “3D-like” effect — more theatrical and cinematic. But some analysts are questioning whether there is a need for a curved display. “3D-like” may not serve as an accurate description of the experience for average viewers. Some say it even alters the experience in a way a director might not intend, as the effect could easily be achieved by a special camera lens instead. Continue reading Will Consumers See Any Real Need for a Curved TV Display?

CES: Qualcomm Outlines Plans for Tablets and Connected Cars

Qualcomm’s CEO-elect Steve Mollenkopf shared his vision for 2014 during a CES press event, a vision that includes more robust and feature-rich operating systems enhancing the tablet market (providing opportunities for Qualcomm’s mobile Snapdragon chips), a growing trend in smart wearables (including Qualcomm’s Toq), and a new era of connected cars (aided by the new Snapdragon 602A). The AEC-Q100 compliant 602A is designed to meet auto industry standards for temperature, quality and longevity. Continue reading CES: Qualcomm Outlines Plans for Tablets and Connected Cars

Sony Introduces New $1,999 4K Consumer Camcorder at CES

Sony introduced its FDR-AX1 Handycam last September, which the company billed as “the world’s first consumer 4K camcorder.” However, its price tag, form factor and extensive features seemed more professional than consumer. At CES, Sony unveiled the more compact and affordable FDR-AX100, which at $1,999 should appeal to 4K early adopters. The Ax100, expected to hit shelves in March, features a 1-inch 14.2-megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor, larger than those typically found in camcorders. Continue reading Sony Introduces New $1,999 4K Consumer Camcorder at CES

CES: TV Binge Viewers Set New World Record at TiVo Booth

To leverage the growing trend of binge-viewing and promote its DVR services, TiVo sponsored an attempt by three men to break the world record for continuous TV watching. Las Vegas residents Chris Laughlin, Dan Jordan and Spencer Larson watched 87 straight hours of television through TiVo’s new Roamio DVR in a marathon viewing session at the company’s CES booth last week. The previous record was set by two Californians who watched more than 86 hours worth of “The Simpsons” in 2012. Continue reading CES: TV Binge Viewers Set New World Record at TiVo Booth

Engadget Announces the Best of CES 2014 Awards Winners

As official partner to the Consumer Electronics Association, senior editors from Engadget selected finalists for this year’s Best of CES awards. At the end of the week, they had selected winners across 13 categories, in addition to a ‘Best of the Best’ winner — the Oculus Rift ‘Crystal Cove’ prototype. Engadget also announced that the People’s Choice Award went to Razer for its first wearable device, the Nabu, which registered nearly 50 percent of the more than 54,000 reader votes. Continue reading Engadget Announces the Best of CES 2014 Awards Winners

Changing the Way We Game: Virtual Reality with Oculus Rift

The focal point of the virtual reality renaissance, the Oculus Rift, is edging closer to its consumer release. The company was at the 2014 CES showing off the latest update to its ever-improving 3D head-mounted display with a prototype codenamed Crystal Cove. The new device improves the frame rate and image persistence of its two screens to reduce motion blur. ETC was on-hand to test out the latest VR experience and talk to the company’s young founder, Palmer Luckey. Continue reading Changing the Way We Game: Virtual Reality with Oculus Rift

Rovi Team Experiments with Brainwaves Project to Control TV

Through its cloud-based platform, Rovi powers digital entertainment solutions in discovery and personalization for leading brands. A small band of dreamers at Rovi demonstrated an experimental project at the guide makers exhibit at Caesar’s Palace during CES. Using a headset that monitors both brainwaves and nearby nerve activity, after a short training period it was possible to go from watching TV to the guide with a literal blink of the eyes, and then select a new program with a bit of concentration on the guide. Continue reading Rovi Team Experiments with Brainwaves Project to Control TV

Panasonic Intros Hands-Free Wearable 4K Camera and More

In an interesting addition to the wearables category at CES this year, Panasonic has introduced a 4K video camera that you strap to the side of your face. The waterproof point-of-view camera, set to launch later this year, has a wire connection to a device that you wear on your arm. The prototype is similar to the $244 HX-A100 HD camcorder that Panasonic debuted at the 2013 CES, but is reportedly more powerful inside and includes 4K recording, a fisheye lens and mini-HDMI port. Continue reading Panasonic Intros Hands-Free Wearable 4K Camera and More

CES: Liquid Image Demos 4G Live Streaming via Action Cam

Liquid Image unveiled a new mini camera during CES, which is capable of streaming live video to the Internet over 4G LTE wireless. Intended for extreme sports, news coverage and point-of-view footage, the $200 EGO LS will be available in the U.S. in June. Users can record 1080p video at 30 fps or transmit over 4G LTE in lower resolution WQVGA at 30 fps. The camera was demonstrated in Las Vegas attached to a $200 Verizon 4G network module. Continue reading CES: Liquid Image Demos 4G Live Streaming via Action Cam

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