Posts Tagged ‘ABC’

You read article after article about the new Amazon Fire TV and see the praises heaped on the device. I admit if I was an Amazon prime member and had their tablets, I would look hard at this new entry into the IPTV market. But devices are not the only part of the IPTV viewing experience.

First, you need to know there are three discreet ways you can get IPTV.

  1. Windows PC – A great known in the market, running software like Playon TV, Hulu and a bunch of other apps, including XBMC and PLex media servers. I have a media PC running all of the above and love it.
  2. Linux – Roku and others use their own version of linux and provide their content via Channels you get for free and pay for. A great way to extend you PC an native Roku channels to different rooms in your house wirelessly (great picture quality). BUT, you can only get the channels that Roku lets you have, kind of like iTunes.
  3. Android – I hope this is the future. There are tons of apps made by everybody that gives you the choices we are all craving for. That is, don’t tell me what I want. Let me pick. The more choices I have, the more freedom I have. Not locked into anyone.

Just like the latest HDTV entries that come with their own built in apps, everybody has a different take on what consumers want. The book by Arthur Freeman entitled “Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda: Overcoming Regrets, Mistakes, and Missed Opportunities” says a lot.

My regret is that every manufacturer wants to lock you into their system. Cable and cell phone companies have been doing this for a while (Don’t we love that?). What happened to “open systems”? Where users could pick what they wanted with few restrictions? Reading closely you find out that Amazon uses a “highly customized” version of Android; or in my view a locked version of android. If they woulda used a more open version of Android, you could pick from hundreds of apps not just from their list of available apps.

Amazon and others coulda given us a more open system, giving us choices and let us be loyal customers thankful for the choices.

Somebody shoulda told Amazon people want content, let us pick what we want to watch.

There is hope. I just purchased an Android media box disguised as a game controller. It is called Ouya. It started as a Kickstarter project and is now in production. I haven’t even set it up yet, but based on information on the internet and their forums will let you load all the apps you want without the Amazon, Roku, Boxee, etc. restrictions. So let me list you the FREE apps I am going to install which will also get me off of cable:

  1. ABC
  2. NBC
  3. CBS
  4. PBS
  5. Crackle
  6. Snagfilms
  7. French TV
  8. TV5 MONDE
  9. Tele-Loisirs
  10. Hulu/HuluPlus
  11. Playon
  12. Allcast
  13. YouTube
  14. Plex
  15. Netflix (maybe, Snagfilms has a ton of great movies)

I don’t know about you, but this pretty much fills my TV viewing appetite. So is the Amazon Fire TV a great device? Yep, as far as the device part goes, now who is going to step up and really give us what we want, freedom of choice? No one I know…yet.

I started paying attention to my family’s viewing habits and discovered that like most family’s, we leave the TV on all day to make the noise people are most comfortable with hearing. Being able to glance at the TV when something interests you like a news flash. I would walk into the room and ask if I can change channels because no one is really watching while family members read books, pay bills, etc.. The answer I usually get is “Sure no problem, I am not really watching.” Does this describe your family? If it does, then think about what options are already out there that cost little or nothing to get you to dump cable.

The easiest streaming option with a little money is an outdoor antenna mounted in your attic or outside, depending on your location and geography. Simply go to www.tvfool.com and find out what stations are available based on your address. Chances are you can get 5-6 major stations like ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX and PBS. You can also go to YouTube and search for HD antennas. You get tons of how to make your own HD antenna for a few bucks.

So what happens at the end of the day when you really want to watch all your “favorite” shows? TADA! IPTV gives you all your shows for a few bucks month. You say “but doesn’t the antenna already give me my shows at night too? Yes it does. But if the over the air reception in your location doesn’t meet your expectations, then here is what you can do.

Buy a Roku 3 device for $100. Sign up for HULU Plus for $7.99 a month and Bingo you are good to go. The reason I use HULU Plus is because like most people, I do not watch all my favorite shows when they are broadcast. With HULU Plus, I get an instant DVR with the whole season of my shows saved for me. There is a free version of HULU you can try that does not give you your shows for a day or two (depending on the original broadcast channel) and will give you limited past episode access, but it is Free.

Roku also gives  you cable channels like PBS, Lifetime, A&E, History who have thier own channels on the Roku box. Add in some extras like Snag films (free) or Netflix (paid) and that is alot of content.

Roku channels like Redbox and VUDU let you rent movies like you may be used to without leaving your house.

So what are you waiting for? Dump  Cable!

homemediaguy

 

Finally someone got the message. Last week Disney (whoowns ABC) made a deal with DISH networks to provide content from ABC with NO repeat NO commercials! You have to wait 3 days from the original broacast day to see the programming. But so what!

The deal will allow DISH customers to hop or skip commercials while you are watching using DISH’s auto hop technology. Meanwhile CBS and NBC are still fighting DISH over this feature.

Who knows maybe the logic will catch on and spread.