Tickets via iPhone soon to be accepted at half of all stadiums
The entity controlling the sport of baseball is making some major league moves in courting iOS owners, particularly those using Apple's "virtual wallet" Passbook app. Major League Baseball (MLB) has announced that it will expand the number of stadiums accepting Passbook electronic tickets to nearly half of all MLB venues over the course of 2013, for a total of 13 stadiums. Last week, the league updated its At Bat 13 app for Spring Training, now including multi-platform live audio and a classic game video archive among many other new features.
Roku media hub arrives with slight premium
Roku on Monday kicked off its Canadian launch. The country will get two higher-end models in the lineup, the Roku 2 XD and Roku 2 XS, both of which can handle 1080p video; the XS bundles in the Wii-like motion remote and includes both Ethernet and USB for wired access and local content. Canadians get much of the same content, including Netflix, Rdio music, and major sports like the MLB and NHL, although US-specific services like Hulu Plus are out of contention.
MLB joins cable on Xbox 360
Microsoft took its promised Comcast Xfinity TV and HBO Go support live on the Xbox 360 Tuesday with the extra addition of MLB.tv. Akin to the ESPN app, it gives users the option of watching live and on-demand events, albeit live only for out-of-market games. Kinect owners have the extra advantage of motion and voice commands that can sometimes speed up the action.
iStopMotion update launched
This past weekend, MLB.com At Bat 12 set two new launch records by drawing 2.9 million accesses and delivering 450,000 live audio and video streams. The mobile app, which allows users to follow every MLB baseball game, is currently focused on spring training but will be updated with new information prior to opening day. As previously announced, MLB.com At Bat 12 also introduces new subscription planes. Fans can subscribe to an entire season of audio streams for $15, or choose to pay a monthly fee of $3. Meanwhile, video subscriptions are set at $120 for a year, or $25 a month.
Roku branches out to UK in earnest
Roku's international plans became real Friday after it began UK and Ireland. The Roku LT and Roku 2 XS are now available for £50 and £100 respectively (60 and 120 euros). British customers are simultaneously getting BBC iPlayer to catch up on the past one to two weeks of TV shows.
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 España's Movistar Imagenio, and MSNBC's Today in the US.
Concord says Apple TV may have hit 1.82m total
Concord Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo on Wednesday estimated that sales of the second-generation Apple TV had been steady since it went on sale in October. Extrapolating from the official tally of one million in December, he determined that another 820,000 of the media hub had shipped in the first three months of 2011. He didn't directly explain the reasons why to AppleInsider.
Roku comes to Best Buy through XD model
Roku made one of its biggest pushes into retail on Wednesday and landed a key deal with Best Buy. The big-box stores will carry the mid-range Roku XD both in retail and online. The move represents the first time one of the company's networked media hubs is available at stores across the US without a forced rebranding.
Apple TV update adds MLB.tv games
(Update: NBA too) In a quiet companion update to iOS 4.3, Apple on Wednesday also added MLB.tv to the Apple TV. Those using Apple TV 4.2 (build 2060) can watch both live and archived games, including in HD where the option exists. Users can hop to particular plays or at bats and can play the version of the broadcast from either city.
DirecTV hints Apple TV getting NFL Sunday Ticket
The Apple TV other unsupported platforms may get NFL Sunday Ticket in what could be a major coup. A leaked DirecTV research survey has suggested that those who subscribed to the Internet version of the live sports service could watch on an "Apple TV, Boxee or Roku player," adding dedicated media hubs that haven't had service at all before. Blu-ray players, game consoles and direct TV connections were likewise mentioned in Engadget's tip.
Roku said adding Hulu Plus front end
Roku's media boxes could soon get Hulu Plus access, StreamingMedia executive VP Dan Rayburn claimed on Monday. After allegedly getting a photo of the front end, two content partners said that a Hulu channel was coming. They didn't say whether it would be the free service, though Hulu's resistance to TV-friendly free use makes it more likely that a $10 Hulu Plus subscription is necessary.
Roku Adds MLB Streaming
Roku today became one of the few if not only network media hub creators to offer Major League Baseball streaming. The addition gives anyone who already has an MLB.TV premium subscription the option of watching a game live if it's out of their home market, including in HD. Users can also watch recent games from any market on demand and still have access to MLB content on computers and elsewhere.
Evernote 1.4 (free) lets a user capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform is available. This information is then accessible and search able at anytime. The software can be used for creating notes that handle both text and audio and finding printed and handwritten text within images. Version 1.4 includes several new search keyboard shortcuts and a global new note shortcut. The update has also improved the format menu and fixed the option for changing notebooks from within the Extended Note area. [Download - 13.8MB]
Game Changer iPhone ad
Apple has posted a new iPhone ad to its site which puts a focus on the MLB At Bat application. The new promotion follows Apple's, now common formula for building an iPhone ad. A hand is seen operating the phone over a white background with the same tune playing in the background, the same voice describing the capabilities of the iPhone and the phone ringing and being answered to end the advertisement.
MLB At-Bat update
MLB.com has updated its At-Bat iPhone/iPod touch app to include post-season schedules. The software should allow fans to track each post-season game live, with a pitch-by-pitch view through Gameday. Users also have access to video clips including previews and highlights, for which the app automatically detects connected networks, and plays video tailored to EDGE, 3G or Wi-Fi bitrates. At-Bat also provides up-to-date box scores and game summaries.
MLB cease and desist
The Major League Baseball association is seeking action against a free iPhone application called Baseball (opens in iTunes), regarding its use of MLB team logos throughout the app. PC World reveals the app contains thousands of team and player statistics, reaching back to 1888, all the way until the current baseball season. On Monday, Mark Knopper – owner and proprietor of Bulbous Ventures – was instructed by email to remove all logos related to Major League Baseball, and associated teams.