Archive | Smart TV

Ready for the AI TV Future?

As everyone in the consumer technology business knows, live demos are a tricky business, especially when dealing with persnickety Wi-Fi connections. To live demo or not to live demo decisions are not arrived at lightly, and then are copiously rehearsed to avoid offending the live demo gods. So when TCL’s senior product designer Tiago Abreu […]

Vizio Smart TV Shift: Are Google and Amazon in an App War?

This month, Vizio, the North American vendor of value-priced television lines sold heavily in warehouse clubs and discount store chains, amended its exclusive use of smart TVs based on the Chromecast platform as it expanded its selection of app partners beyond the Google ecosystem. The move not only lets Vizio customers access a more traditional […]

Many Monstrous Notes at CES 2017

While wandering around CES 2017, I was reminded of that scene in Amadeus, in which the Emperor Joseph II decides that the new opera by Mozart had “too many notes.” (The actual quote is “monstrous many notes” and referred to Mozart’s “The Abduction from the Seraglio,” but I digress.) That’s what I felt about CES—monstrous […]

Why Smart TVs Are Like a 10-Year-Old

Today’s smart TVs are smart the way a precocious 10-year-old is smart – smart, comparatively speaking, but not exactly Alexander Hamilton, Warren Buffett or Albert Einstein. Young prodigies can reel off the names of the presidents backwards, Pi out to 314 digits or the “Rime of the Ancient Mariner” by heart. But finding insight from […]

The Dumb Pipe Era Advances

Cable and telecommunications multi-system operators (MSOs) have had one overriding objective since the dawn of the digital era: to avoid becoming a “dumb pipe” — i.e. infrastructure, a mere purveyor of another’s bits. Today, that fate appears increasingly inevitable, with a twist. MSOs have fought the dumbing down of their networks largely through the promise […]

Smart TV? More Like, Spy TV

In 2013, we noted how the TV industry’s push for new revenue streams, in tandem with the migration to IP technology, entangled the industry in some sensitive privacy issues. Fast forward to 2016 and things have changed—for the worse. In 2013, it was the integration of pay TV services with social network data that raised […]

A Nimble TiVo Keeps Pace with Changing Landscape, But for How Long?

Long before Netflix and Roku, TiVo was the poster child for TV innovation, popularizing the hard drive-based digital video recorder and trick play TV features. It was credited with no less a feat than changing the way people watch TV. But in the OTT era, when streaming has muscled in on time-shifting and countless terabytes […]

FreeTV Alliance Seeks to Keep Free DTH Momentum Strong in Europe

On September 12, 2014, three European free-to-air satellite operators—UK’s Freesat, France’s Fransat and Italy’s Tivusat—joined forces to form the FreeTV Alliance. Shortly thereafter, in October, Germany’s HD Plus jumped on board with the group. The goal behind the alliance is to harmonize the production of set top boxes, Smart TVs and other devices for satellite […]

While Apple Watches, Android TV Strikes Deals

Apple is spending an inordinate amount of time positioning itself to win the wearables market. But TV? Not so much. The most significant recent TV announcement from Apple was a price cut on the already three-year old Apple TV (from $99 to $69) and a limited run of exclusivity for HBO’s soon-to-launched standalone streaming service. […]

VP9’s Surge of SoC Support Won’t Derail HEVC

HEVC may be the presumptive king of next-generation compression technology, but the Google-backed rival VP9 has kicked off 2015 with a growing show of support. At CES, several DTV semiconductor manufacturers revealed SoCs that included both HEVC and VP9 decoding. They include MediaTek, whose MT5595 SoC is being deployed in Sony’s 2015 lineup of Android […]