AUDIO VIDEO NEWS

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Posted: Feb 20, 2000 0 comments

According to new statistics released by the <A HREF="http://www.ce.org">Consumer Electronics Association</A> (CEA), manufacturer-to-dealer sales of video products in January grew by 8% over the first month of 1999 and totaled nearly 3.5 million units. Sales of DVD players, projection televisions, and camcorders were the major factors contributing to this growth, according to the trade organization.

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Barry Willis Posted: Feb 20, 2000 0 comments

Welcome to <I>Mating Dance of the Giants</I>, brought to you by <A HREF="http://www.aol.com/">America Online</A> and <A HREF="http://www.blockbuster.com/">Blockbuster Video</A>. The world's largest Internet service provider (soon to be AOL Time Warner) and the world's largest video sales-and-rental chain are expanding the symbiotic relationship begun a few months ago. The two behemoths announced February 17 that their multi-year alliance will grow in several directions, all of them intended to cement their already unshakable grip on the marketplace.

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Posted: Feb 20, 2000 0 comments

The <A HREF="http://www.fcc.gov/">Federal Communications Commission</A> has turned down an appeal by a California-based Internet service provider hoping to piggyback its services on local cable television lines. <A HREF="http://www.ivn.net/">Internet Ventures, Inc.</A> had tried to exploit what it saw as a loophole in cable-access law that might have let the company use unallocated bandwidth for its Internet service.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Feb 20, 2000 0 comments

Late last week, <A HREF="http://www.intel.com">Intel</A> and <A HREF="http://www.sony.com">Sony</A> announced that they intend to collaborate in an effort to give consumers the ability to share electronic content between PCs and various consumer electronic devices, including home entertainment systems (digital televisions, set-top boxes), digital cameras, digital camcorders, and portable music players. Intel says that the effort is part of the companies' vision of the "e-Home" of the future, in which the Internet will be available throughout a range of devices.

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Barry Willis Posted: Feb 13, 2000 0 comments

What's in a name? At the very least, lots of very expensive litigation for independent film-distribution site <A HREF="http://www.reeluninverse.com/">ReelUniverse.com</A>, which recently received a cease-and-desist demand from attorneys representing movie retailer <A HREF="http://www.reel.com/">Reel.com</A>, a subsidiary of Hollywood Entertainment Corporation, parent of <A HREF="http://www.hollywoodvideo.com/">Hollywood Video</A>, the second-largest video rental-and-retail chain in the US.

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Posted: Feb 13, 2000 0 comments

February 4th's <A HREF="http://www.guidetohometheater.com/shownews.cgi?641">unanimous decision</A> by the <A HREF="http://www.fcc.gov/">Federal Communications Commission</A> to dismiss a petition from Sinclair Broadcasting seeking to modify the existing digital television broadcast standard has won praise from the <A HREF="http://www.ce.org/">Consumer Electronics Association</A>. "We commend the commissioners for today's unanimous decision," said CEA president Gary Shapiro. "With this ruling, DTV's future is clear and paved for success. The FCC has wisely provided broadcasters, manufacturers, and consumers with the certainty they need to move forward with the transition to digital television."

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Jon Iverson Posted: Feb 13, 2000 0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="http://www.thebroadscreen.com">thebroadscreen.com</A> announced that it has laid all of the groundwork to begin MPEG-2 production of digital news and entertainment over what it terms "broadband Internet connections." The company says that the format will be dubbed iDVD (Internet Digital Video Disc), and is intended to be downloaded into the new DVD-RAM recorders or played live over cable and DSL connections.

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Posted: Feb 13, 2000 0 comments

At a press conference last week, <A HREF="http://www.sony.com/professional">Sony Electronics</A>' professional division outlined the company's strategy for the broadband network era, and announced a number of new broadcast and professional products that will be on display at the upcoming <A HREF="http://www.nab.org/">National Association of Broadcasters</A> (NAB) show in April.

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Barry Willis Posted: Feb 13, 2000 0 comments

After the coming merger of <A HREF="http://www.aol.com/">America Online</A> and media giant <A HREF="http://www.timewarner.com/">Time Warner</A> was announced, the <A HREF="http://washingtonpost.com/"><I>Washington Post</I></A> ran a cartoon in which a man comes home to find every item in his house telling him "You've got mail!" AOL hasn't connected to the toaster yet, but may soon have its hooks in that other staple of American household appliances, the television set.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Feb 06, 2000 0 comments

On the heels of aggressive lobbying by the Sinclair Broadcast Group (see <A HREF="http://www.guidetohometheater.com/shownews.cgi?639">related story</A>), the FCC today released a letter denying a Petition for Expedited Rulemaking, filed by Sinclair, requesting that the Commission modify its rules to allow broadcasters to transmit Digital Television (DTV) signals using COFDM modulation in addition to the current 8-VSB modulation standard.

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Posted: Feb 06, 2000 0 comments

A coalition of Canadian broadcasters is seeking to permanently shut down <A HREF="http://www.icravetv.com/">iCraveTV.com</A>, a website that until recently had been retransmitting US and Canadian TV programming over the Internet. The site was on the receiving end of an <A HREF="http://www.guidetohometheater.com/shownews.cgi?629">American lawsuit</A> filed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania late in January by a group of television networks, film studios, and professional sports leagues.

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Barry Willis Posted: Feb 06, 2000 0 comments

A federal court in Denver hosted a DBS David vs. Goliath scene the first week of February, when <A HREF="http://www.echostar.com/">EchoStar Communications Corporation</A> filed an antitrust suit against its rival <A HREF="http://www.directv.com/">DirecTV</A> and Thomson Consumer Electronics, charging them with conspiring to keep EchoStar's products out of electronics stores.

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Posted: Feb 06, 2000 0 comments

According to recent statistics released by the <A HREF="http://www.ce.org">Consumer Electronics Association</A>, manufacturer-to-dealer sales of video products grew by 28.6% in December, totaling just under 5.6 million units and rounding out a year of growth in the category. The CEA also reports that total sales of video products in 1999 topped 60 million units, increasing by 22% over 1998. In addition, the numbers indicate that virtually every category (with the exception of direct-view color TVs) experienced double-digit increases for the year.

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Jon Iverson Posted: Feb 06, 2000 0 comments

Last week, before its appeal had been denied by the FCC (see <A HREF="http://www.guidetohometheater.com/shownews.cgi?641">related story</A>), the <A HREF="http://www.sbgi.com">Sinclair Broadcast Group</A> announced that it had demonstrated live, over-the-air digital television (DTV) reception last week in Washington, DC, "in response to numerous Congressional inquiries." These demonstrations were "intended to demonstrate to members of Congress the flaw in the DTV standard."

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Posted: Feb 01, 2000 0 comments

The Home Entertainment 2000 show, originally planned to be held in Rye, New York this spring, has been canceled. Show staff has received feedback from manufacturers and dealers, who feel that the rooms at the Rye venue are too small, and that a suburban location is not optimal. EmapUSA VP Jaqueline Augustine states that "We want to hold a successful show, and this venue could not guarantee our success."

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