Month: February 2007

Speedbump for SED HDTV

February 28, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Last week, electronics giant Canon lost a big court decision to a little Texas company, Nano Proprietary. Nano Proprietary holds patents on some of the technology necessary to develop the new surface emitter displays: SEDs. According to a Reuters report, Canon paid Nano a one-time $5.6 million licensing fee for the use of those patents. Then Canon teamed up with Toshiba to develop SED technology jointly, and created some beautiful...

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Sony Blu-ray DVD Player for $599?

February 27, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
At a press conference yesterday, Sony announced plans to release an entry-level Blu-ray high-definition DVD player with a $599 list price early this summer. A senior VP also predicted that a Blu-ray player will be selling for less than $500 for this year's winter holiday buying season, according to a variety of sources. Sony also cited data from Nielsen VideoScan data that Blu-ray DVDs are outselling HD DVD discs three...

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CBS Reaches HDTV Deal with Cable

February 26, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
You subscribe to a cable service. You expect that you'll get your local television stations as part of that service. If you are paying extra for digital cable with HDTV service, you might expect to get the local HDTV broadcasts as well. And you might well be wrong. As we saw in the days leading up to the SuperBowl, owners of local television stations were insisting on getting a piece...

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HD DVD Copy Protection Unlocked

February 23, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Word broke last week that someone had found a way to unlock the AACS digital rights management (which is another way of saying "copy protection") for the new high definition blue laser DVDs. These discs are "locked" using a key that is stored on the DVD. Someone discovered a way to find the key, which makes it possible to unlock any high-def DVD. One key aspect of this news is...

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Reader Question: Upscaling DVD Players

February 22, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Q: New DVD players offer up-conversion of a standard DVD signal. How is this accomplished, and is this feature worthwhile? John Lee, Hawaii A: Standard DVDs produce a 480i signal (or 480p if it’s a progressive scan player). The new “upconvert” devices take the roughly 850 by 480 pixel image and scale it up to 720p or 1080p resolution. Now, the brute force way to do this would be to...

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Joost IPTV Gets MTV

February 21, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Google's YouTube has lost another possible partner. Viacom announced yesterday that efforts to reach a revenue-sharing agreement with YouTube have failed, and so the company is turning to Joost -- formerly the Venice Project -- to host online clips from Viacom's programming. If you're not familiar with Viacom, you'll probably recognize the names of its divisions that will be providing television and movie programming to Joost: MTV Networks, BET Networks,...

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New Intelligence Report Format!

February 20, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Many readers of the HDTV Almanac are already familiar with "Professor Poor's Weekly Price Intelligence Report": the fastest and easiest way to find all the advertised prices for HDTVs from the major national retailers. The news is that we have developed a new way to track all these prices, which will make the report more useful and valuable than ever. We have created a database so that we can track...

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Is Dell’s Future in HDTV?

February 19, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
As the personal computer market gets more constricted and margins get thinner, it should come as no surprise that information technology (IT) companies are looking more and more at consumer electronics (CE) as a way to branch out and pursue the continued growth that corporations seem to equate with success. Two pieces of news from Dell shows that the company is looking hard at CE as part of their turn...

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DTV Changeover: Two Years to Go!

February 16, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
Where will you be when the analog broadcasts of television in the U.S. stop? In two years from this weekend, the nation's TV broadcasts of analog signals will go dark. The FCC has come to the realization that most Americans are unaware of this scheduled event, and don't understand its significance. Organizations such as the Consumer Electronics Association, the National Association of Broadcasters, and the National Cable and Telecommunications Association...

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Olevia: HDTV Trend Setter?

February 15, 2007 | Author: Muneeb Mannan
The New York Times published a story earlier this week with the headline "The No-Name Brand Behind the Latest Flat-Panel Price War". The story makes the case that the Olevia brand of LCD HDTVs made by Syntax-Brillian were responsible for the incredibly low prices seen during last year's holiday shopping season. The article cites Circuit City's price of $475 for a 32-inch model, which was indeed an astonishing price. But...

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