Barb Gonzalez

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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Aug 06, 2014 2 comments
The Plex media server and player has just received another new update that enhances your downloaded movies and fixes problems found in earlier updates.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jul 31, 2014 0 comments
Amazon Prime membership has added free music from Amazon Prime Music. Here's how Amazon Prime Music works and tips for quickly amassing the music library you want.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jul 25, 2014 Published: Jul 23, 2014 2 comments
The Qplay app and adapter will cease to function after July 25, 2014. Was Qplay a bad idea?
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jul 09, 2014 0 comments
The addition of Android mirroring and other features to the Chromecast streaming media dongle will level the playing field with other (more expensive) media players.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jun 25, 2014 0 comments
The Android TV was unveiled at the Google developer's conference. Here's what's new and how it differs from Google TV.
Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jun 13, 2014 0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $150

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Adds Google TV apps to a Sony Bravia TV
Compact dongle form factor
Integrates cable/satellite programming with streaming apps
Integrates some apps typically not available on Google TV

Minus
Google TV remote was sometimes unresponsive
Only works with specific 2013 (or newer) Bravia TVs

THE VERDICT
A solid Google TV add-on for owners of compatible Bravia TVs.

When the Sony Bravia Smart Stick was first announced, it was thought to be competition for Google’s Chromecast. But this complete Google TV-on-a-dongle is not for everyone. It is an add-on option for recent Bravia TV owners who want more than the streaming apps available on the Bravia TV platform. The Bravia stick integrates seamlessly with the TV, combining the app menu from the Bravia TV with the Google TV home screen for quick access.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jun 11, 2014 0 comments
Here's how to find any movie or TV show to stream to your TV. Global search and search websites search across multiple apps to save time and make it easy to go straight to the movie you've been wanting to see.
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Barb Gonzalez Posted: Jun 04, 2014 1 comments
With Vudu's Share My Movies you can share movies you "own" with up to five friends or family members without having to share your Vudu credentials.
Barb Gonzalez Posted: May 27, 2014 0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $499

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Integrates with cable or satellite set-top box with advanced One Guide
Improved Kinect camera for voice and gesture control
Blu-ray player works with voice and gesture control
Minus
Requires Xbox Gold membership to stream from some services
Some streaming services available on Xbox 360 not yet on Xbox One
Can stop playback to say “hi” to a new user that has stepped into the room

THE VERDICT
For gamers who want a streaming all-in-one entertainment device, this is the console to buy.

The Xbox One was released in November 2013, exactly eight years after the release of Microsoft's last game console, the Xbox 360. In those eight years, the Xbox 360 was updated and upgraded, including the addition of the Kinect camera for voice and gesture control. In the past couple of years, a number of streaming services were also added, making the Xbox 360 a viable whole-family entertainment device. Now, the Xbox One has “improved” on the 360’s features. The Kinect has been upgraded. TV integration and a Blu-ray player have been added. The result: the Xbox One may be poised to fulfill Microsoft’s hope to make it the only component you’ll need to add to your home theater.

Barb Gonzalez Posted: May 23, 2014 0 comments

Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $400

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Offers most major apps
Excellent picture and sound quality
No additional subscriptions required to access streaming services
Netflix Max helps find recommendations geared to your taste
Minus
No remote or QWERTY keyboard outside of game controller
Limited number of apps—no social networks or photo apps
No DLNA or other streaming from home network media libraries

THE VERDICT
Excellent for gaming and on the whole, but not the best choice for streaming alone.

With PlayStation 4, Sony has upped the video game ante with incredible graphics and the ability to share gameplay with the touch of a “share” button on its redesigned game controller. But how is it as a media streamer? I took a look at Sony's latest to check out its entertainment offerings and its ergonomics as an entertainment (non-gaming) device.

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