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November 1, 2006

October 2006 Monthly Roundup for TVSnob


Can you believe next month is Christmas? Anyway, lots of cool things happened on the TV front last month like the news that Time Warner is going to offer customers DVR-like features without the hardware and that DirecTV is going to add local HD programming to 25 markets.

We also featured a few cool remote control reviews like the Logitech Harmony 72 and the Philips SRU9600 Universal Touchscreen Remote. Be sure to check out both reviews and any other of the TVSnob articles that you might of missed in October.

General News and Rants
Buying an HDTV Video from American Consumer
Place your Bets on the PlayStation 3!
Blogpire Podcast - Liquor Snob - All The News that's Fit to Drink 10.24.06
The TiVo Deal of a Lifetime
PlayStation 3 May be Delayed - Wow What a Surprise!
Still Confused about Blu-ray?
DVRs - What Accessories do you Need?
DirecTV to Add Local HD Programming to 25 Markets
Plasma TV to be Overtaken by Lasers?
BlogPire Podcast - Autumnal Festival Episode - Fun Fall Products 10.09.06
Win a Trip to the PlayStation Party 3 Premiere In Los Angeles


Deal of the Day
Deal of the Day: Akai PDP5073TM 50" Plasma HDTV
Deal of the Day: TiVo TCD649080 Series2 80 Hour Dual Tuner Digital Video Recorder

Reviews, First Looks, and Tutorials
My Remote Can Kick your Remote's Butt!
Time Warner Cable to Offer DVR-like Features Without the DVR Hardware
Philips SRU9600 Universal Touchscreen Remote Review
Install A Satellite Dish the Easy Way
Logitech Harmony 720 Remote Review


New DVD Releases
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Oct. 31, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Oct. 24, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Oct. 17, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Oct. 10, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Oct. 03, 2006

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 25, 2006

Time Warner Cable to Offer DVR-like Features Without the DVR Hardware

While I think every home should have a DVR, Time Warner Cable has a new service for those of you who want some DVR-like features without paying for a DVR box. Acording to TMCNet.com:

Time Warner Cable on Monday will launch a new service here that will let its digital cable TV subscribers press a button to restart their favorite shows, movies or sporting events from the beginning -- for free and without using a digital video recorder.

The release continues:

The feature works via the set-top box used by digital customers.

While Start Over lets viewers rewind and pause programs, they cannot fast-forward or use Start Over to skip commercials.

And, initially, only a portion of Time Warner's programming can be restarted.

The company must negotiate agreements with the networks it carries and with content producers like Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema before it can make shows Start Over-enabled.

Personally I can't see why you wouldn't spend the extra $9 a month to a get a DVR with Time Warner Cable. This might actually be an ingenious plan to upsell customers to DVR. What do you think?

At TMCNet.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 17, 2006

DirecTV to Add Local HD Programming to 25 Markets

Here's good news for DirecTV viewers:

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., Oct 10, 2006 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Already leading the satellite TV industry in the delivery of local HD programming, DIRECTV will offer local HD broadcast networks in 67 markets, representing approximately 74 percent of U.S. TV households, by year end when it rolls out 25 more local HD markets in the fourth quarter.

Local news, sports and popular primetime programming from ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC will be available in HD to customers who subscribe to any TOTAL CHOICE(R) programming package that offers local channels. There is no additional charge for local HD programming.

The 25 local markets to receive HD programming from DIRECTV include:

  • Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Buffalo, N.Y.
  • Des Moines, Iowa
  • Flint, Mich.
  • Ft. Meyers, Fla.
  • Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Green Bay, Wisc.
  • Greensboro, N.C.
  • Greenville, S.C.
  • Harrisburg, Pa.
  • Jacksonville, Fla.
  • Little Rock, Ark.
  • Madison, Wisc.
  • Mobile, Ala.
  • New Orleans
  • Norfolk, Va.
  • Oklahoma City, Okla.
  • Portland, Me.
  • Providence, R.I.
  • Reno, Nev.
  • Santa Barbara, Calif.
  • Spokane, Wa.
  • Springfield, Mo.
  • Toledo, Ohio
  • Tulsa, Okla.

At DirecTV.comDirecTV to

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

October 12, 2006

Install A Satellite Dish the Easy Way


A few years ago, I decided that satellite TV was the way to go. I found a great deal on a dish and figured I'd save a hundered bucks on the install and do it myself. I mean, how hard could it be? Okay, that was probably one of the stupidest questions I 've ever asked (if you don't count me asking the judge "You talkin' to me?", while doing my best Travis Bickle impersonation).

Anyway, if you've ever hooked up a satellite dish, you realize that finding a signal requires a college degree and a lot of shouting from to the roof to a 12 year old engineer in the front room. The dialogue consists of a lot of:

"What's the signal strength?"

"Huh?"

"Is it doing anything?"

"Huh?"

"Do you want me to come down there and ....?"

"Huh?"

All that's followed by a lot of cussing (by the 12 year old, of course) and an olympic-type slip and fall performance off of the roof (by me, of course).

Anyway we're back on cable now. If I ever decide to install satellite again (yeah, right!), I'll be sure to do it the smart way like Danny over at Mavromatic.com:

I’ve installed a few Satellite Dishes for friends, family, and myself — I really hate it. Most of the installs I have done involved setting the Dish up on a roof or far from the receiver, thus rendering the tone and display generated from the Dish Setup screen useless. I have bought all the standard setup tools… the digital compass and inline satellite signal meter, but those tools still don’t make it a 15-minute setup job. Solution, use an old Realistic PocketVision 22. I think my pocket TV is circa 1989, but any pocket TV with miniplug antenna port will work — I’ve seen these things as cheap as $10 used.

A little TV on the roof? Why the hell didn't I think of that? Oh well, at least now I know how to tuck and roll after a 12 foot swandive. Be sure to read the complete tutorial:

HOW TO: Setup A Satellite Dish In 15 Minutes at Mavoratic.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

October 5, 2006

Win a Trip to the PlayStation Party 3 Premiere In Los Angeles

For you die-hard gamers out there, Sony is running a contest that will allow 10 lucky winners to attend the PS 3 Premiere party in Los Angeles on November 8.


According to Playstation.com:

How to Get In:

Show us why you should, must, absolutely have to be at the Playstation 3 Premiere Party. Use any medium you like (photos, videos, stories, song, whatever), but use your:

  • Creativity
  • Enthusiasm
  • Originality
  • Sense of Humor

More Details at US.Playstation.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 2, 2006

September 2006 Monthly Roundup for TVSnob

As has been the pattern this year, September went way too fast. We had lots of excitng news about TiVo last month including the Series 3 release and even an available upgrade already.

For those of you who want to watch TV or movies on your PC, you'll want to check out our article about AT&T and MobiTV hooking up to offer a live TV subscription service for broadband and the article about Amazon's new video download service.

So go grab a cup of coffee, kick back, and enjoy a little TVSnob catch-up reading.

General News and Rants
Playstation 3 Video of the Day
Plasma TV + TiVo Series 3 = Wonky Remote
Pioneer Suing Samsung Over Plasma Patents
BlogPire Podcast - Fall Product News and Guest Russell Neufeld from ShavingStuff.com 09.25.06
Fox to Test "Fast Forward" Advertising in the UK
Could There be a Solution to the DVD Wars?
TiVo Users to Get Some CBS Shows in Advance
The Miami-Florida St. Game Rocked with 8 Views in One on ESPN
Rumor Central: Series 3 TiVo out on September 13th?

Deal of the Day
Deal of the Day: Hisense USA 17" HD Ready LCD 16:9 Television
Deal of the Day: Logitech Harmony Remote 628 - Universal Remote Control
Deal of the Day: Philips 42PF7320A 42" Widescreen Plasma HDTV

Reviews, First Looks, and Tutorials
AT&T and MobiTV Launch Live TV Subscription Service for Broadband
Amazon.com Launches Unbox Video Download Service
TiVo Series 3 Upgrade Almost Available
TiVo Series 3 Now Available at TiVo.com
Logitech Announces the Harmony 1000 Remote
Samsung Releases a 40" LCD TV with LED Backlight Technology

New DVD Releases
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Sept. 25, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Sept. 18, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Sept. 12, 2006
Amazon DVD Releases Coming Sept. 04, 2006

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 22, 2006

Fox to Test "Fast Forward" Advertising in the UK

I don't know how well this type of advertising will work but it's pure genius. According to MSNBC:

LONDON - Fox is running a 30-second television spot with just one static image in an effort to reach viewers who fast forward through ads using digital video recorders like TiVos.

U.K. advertisements for Fox's new drama, "Brotherhood," which premieres in Britain in October, simply shows an image of Providence, R.I., where the show is set, and the program's logo.

Viewers fast-forwarding through the ad would see the image for a few seconds; those watching it normally would hear dialogue from the show in the background.

What a great idea! While the advertising method might be simple and a little crude, it should do the job.

At MSNBC.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 19, 2006

AT&T and MobiTV Launch Live TV Subscription Service for Broadband


I've been using MobiTV on my PDA for quite awhile so I was pretty pleased to hear that MobiTV was the engine that was running the new AT&T Broadband service. According to the press release:

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) and MobiTV, Inc., the global leader in television and music services for all things mobile and broadband , today announced an agreement to offer a mobile television service to broadband users in the United States, including AT&T Yahoo!? High Speed Internet and AT&T WorldNet subscribers. The browser-based service, which will be called AT&T Broadband TV, will enable subscribers to use a computer to access a wealth of live programming while at home, at work, or on the go using wired and wireless broadband technologies.

Through the deal, AT&T becomes the first U.S. broadband provider to offer a live TV subscription service with MobiTV to consumers through any broadband connection. The service expands upon an earlier agreement that enables AT&T to offer MobiTV to customers who use thousands of AT&T Wi-Fi hot spots.

The AT&T Broadband TV service will initially have approximately 20 channels of live and made-for-broadband television content spanning national news, sports, entertainment and full-length music videos from top artists. Among the channels included in the initial channel lineup is Fox News,* Bloomberg, Oxygen, History Channel, Comedy Time, Toonworld, Maxx Sports and the Weather Channel.

The service is $19.99 a month which is a little higher than I'd like to see. You can check out the service for yourself with a 14 day trial at https://att.mobitv.com/do/welcome.

At MobiTV.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 14, 2006

Amazon.com Launches Unbox Video Download Service


It seems like everyone is hopping on the "downloadable video" train so it's no surprise that Amazon has recently announced their new"Unbox" service. According to the WashingtonPost.com:

Amazon.com Inc. launched a digital video downloading service Thursday, ending months of speculation that the Internet retailer would be getting into the online TV and movie business.

The service, dubbed Amazon Unbox, will offer thousands of television shows, movies and other videos from more than 30 studios and networks, the company said.

TV shows will cost $1.99 per episode, and most movies will go for $7.99 to $14.99; movies can also be rented for $3.99.

Has anyone used this service yet? If you have, drop us a comment and let us know what you think. We'll also give it a try and let you know what we think!

At WashingtonPost.com

More Details at Amazon: Amazon.com Unbox Video:

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 5, 2006

The Miami-Florida St. Game Rocked with 8 Views in One on ESPN

Did you notice the Miami-Florida St. Game on ESPN 2 last night? ESPN's 'Full Circle' broadcast offered 8 views at once which was pretty cool. According to TVPredictions.com:

The multiple HDTV screen coverage was available only on ESPN 2 HD. ESPN HD broadcast the program's main feed, which was featured in the middle of the ESPN 2 broadcast.

The mosaic-style coverage was also available on ESPN2's analog feed, but not in high-def.

Pretty sweet! I look forward to seeing more events like this on ESPN. If you saw this last night, leave us a comment with your thoughts.

At TVPredictions.com

William Hungerford at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

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