Three GPS watches with fitness tracking functions launched by Garmin
Garmin has unveiled three new smartwatches and wrist-based fitness devices at CES, devices meant for use with exercise and outdoor activities. The Fenix 3 is an upgrade to last year's GPS watch, while the Vivoactive is a more conventional fitness tracker, and the Epix is claimed to be the first rugged GPS watch of its kind with hands-free navigation.
Amazon signs multi-year deal with Epix for Prime Instant Video content
Epix, which is a premium entertainment network backed by Paramount Pictures' Viacom, MGM, and Lionsgate, has signed a multi-year agreement with Amazon to provide its movies, sports, music to the Prime Instant Video platform. The service is similar to Netflix as it lets users rent, buy, or subscribe to get access to a range of video content. The service is bundled with Amazon's two-day Prime shipping service, which is charged on an annual basis.
Apple TV hub, TV may get Epix show access
Apple has been discussing a possible deal to get Epix' on-demand movies on its media devices, a pair of tipsters clamed late Friday. The talks were to both support the Apple TV as well as "upcoming devices that stream content," which Reuters took to mean a future TV set. Any progress was early, one of the contacts said.
Xbox Live services to go free from April 19-23
In an attempt to get some more users hooked on its premium Xbox Live subscription service, Microsoft will offer it for free for five days, commencing on Thursday, April 19, and running until Monday, April 23. Partners like Hulu Plus, Netflix, and EPIX will also open their doors for free during the same time period. Depending on where users are, however, they will get various amounts of free app access during those five days.
Xbox 360 to get fix for video color gamut issues
Microsoft's Xbox Live Director of Programming, Larry Hryb, acknowledged an issue with color space in Xbox 360 video. Some of the third-party apps in the fall 2011 Dashboard don't display the correct color range when invoked. Hryb didn't have a timeframe for a fix, but promised it "soon."
We try Xbox 360 fall 2011 dashboard early
Microsoft is about to launch its Xbox 360 fall Dashboard update, and we've had the opportunity to use it early on our own system ahead of when it goes live December 6. The update is Microsoft's second major revamp in the Xbox 360's history and is geared around turning the Xbox 360 into a media hub. Read on for hands-on time and why it may be the definitive answer to the Apple TV.
Microsoft outlines launch plans for X360 live TV
In sync with the fall Xbox 360 Dashboard update, Microsoft has provided a listing of TV providers that will be ready to go this week. Along with existing access to ESPN, Hulu, and Netflix, the December 6 update will also bring EPIX authenticated video in the US, Lovefilm in the UK, MediaSet's Premium Play in Italy, Sky Go in Austria and Germany, Telefonica Espaņa's Movistar Imagenio, and MSNBC's Today in the US.
Netflix drops Sony movies in Starz contract fight
Netflix told viewers Friday that Sony movies being offered through StarzPlay had been pulled from its video service. The drop was the result of fallout during a contract fight between Sony and Starz. Content acquisition VP Pauline Fischer tried to reassure subscribers that it was "temporary."
Epix outs apps for Android, Roku, Samsung, more
Video-on-demand and online service Epix on Wednesday released apps that will bring its service to more than one hundred devices. This includes Android-based phones and tablets, connected Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players, the Google TV, Roku set-top boxes, and the BlackBerry PlayBook. All the apps are free and grant access to users authenticated from their cable and satellite providers with access to more than 3,000 Epix movies, original programs, and TV shows.
Netflix paying $1.2 billion in streaming rights?
Netflix' recent moves to bring its content online only rather than its traditional method of mailing out DVDs is costing the company a minimum of $1.2 billion, according to an SEC filing from yesterday. Thfee would cover the streaming rights for the movies and TV shows to Hollywood studios. The price is a marked increase from the $229 million Netflix spent on rights three years ago.
Netflix exec hired away by Google for movie deals
Google may be deepening its plans to enter the on-demand movie and TV show industry through its Google TV service and beyond. It has just hired away an executive from Netflix, Robert Kyncl, AllThingsDigital reported on Thursday. Kyncl left Netflix last week and his new title will be VP of Content Partnerships at Google, sources said.
Netflix to stream Epix movies 90 days after debut
Netflix today scored a coup for the Internet side of its service as it reached a deal to stream Epix pay TV movies. The movie rental outlet will have access to major Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount movies 90 days after they first air on TV and online. Although not the same as a simultaneous release, Netflix considered it a victory given traditional pay TV limits: some movies are locked into such services for as long as nine years, the company said.
FiOS Internet, TV users get 720p online
Verizon this morning became the first provider to offer EpixHD streaming video as part of its service. Those who have both a FiOS Internet connection and a FiOS TV subscription with the Epix TV channel can watch an unlimited amount of movies on the web at up to 720p. About 150 titles will be in rotation online, but the service will emphasize major, recent movies from MGM, Lionsgate and Parmaount; it should scale to include about 15,000 titles both old and new.
Epix HD Beta
Lionsgate, MGM and Paramount today launched an invitation beta for Epix, a hybrid cable and online movie streaming service meant to supplement rather than replace regular pay-per-view TV. Anyone with a cable package that includes the channel will get access to the studios' movies weeks ahead of their regular DVD releases for "free" but will simultaneously have access to streaming, 720p versions of those same movies for their computers. The approach is ad-free, even online, and automatically scales the bitrate up or down (to as low as 500Kbps) depending on the quality of the connection.