<B>DirecTV And TiVo Partnered Into 2010</B>
DirecTV and TiVo have extended their partnership for three years, allowing DirecTV to continue to offer TiVo's DVR services to its subscribers, and preserving an advertising relationship between the two companies. The partnership, set in the original agreement to expire in February of 2007, will now run through February of 2010.
In late March, Internet-based video-on-demand provider Akimbo Systems announced an agreement that will allow it to offer select titles from HDNet's vast library of HD content to its customers. This is Akimbo's first offering of HD content through its Akimbo Service for Windows XP Media Center Edition.
<B>Blu-ray Movies Scheduled For Release On May 23rd- Will There Be Anything To Play Them On?</B>
Can there be a format war if neither side shows up? Samsung officially announced this week that its BD-P1000 Blu-ray Disc (BD) player will not be released in time for the currently scheduled BD software introduction on May 23rd. The company will now launch the player on June 25th, claiming the delay is necessitated by a lack of software needed for compatibility tests of the players.
<B>Vidikron Vision Model 90</B>
The first trade show I covered as an A/V Journalist was a CEDIA expo many years ago. The jaw-dropping, three-dimensional images I saw from 720p HD clips on the Vidikron Vision One 9" CRT projector are still among the best these eyes have ever seen. A lot has changed since then. Vidikron is not only out of the CRT business, the company was out of business entirely until being acquired by Runco International in 2002. As a Runco brand, Vidikron has released a steady stream of digital projection products, the latest of which is the Vision Model 90.
As far as living with top shelf projectors is concerned, I've lived a charmed life over the last few years. Sony Qualia 004, JVC's 1080P D-ILA, premium single-chip and three-chip DLP projectors, I've lived with the best of the best. And yet, in spite of that, some of the biggest thrills for me as a reviewer come from the smaller packages with smaller price tags.
<B>HD DVD Player Launch To Synchronize With Warner Software Launch Date</B>
As anticipated, Toshiba has officially announced it will delay the launch of its HD DVD players to synchronize with the availability of HD DVD software from Warner Bros. Toshiba has been touring the country with HD DVD demonstrations for several weeks in support of the hardware and software launch originally scheduled for March 28th. Warner Home Video, the only studio with titles officially scheduled to support the format's launch, recently announced that it would not be able to make that date with its HD DVD software. Warner is currently scheduled to release three titles on April 18th, and apparently Toshiba will have players ready on that date.
<B>Three Warner HD DVD Titles To "Launch" HD DVD</B>
The HD DVD launch is beginning with a whimper. Warner Home Video, the only studio committed to supporting the March 28th debut of HD DVD hardware has officially announced it will not have software titles ready until April 18th, citing technical issues as cause. While more titles are to follow in subsequent weeks, exactly three titles are currently announced for the new April start date, <I>Million Dollar Baby</I>, <I>The Phantom of the Opera</I>, and <I>The Last Samurai</I>.
Sony finally admitted the inevitable this week, announcing that the Blu-ray Disc-based PlayStation3 will be delayed until November. According to Sony, the much-anticipated game console will be available in stores worldwide in November just in time for the holiday season. The console will apparently not be available concurrent with the launch of movies available on Blu-ray Disc, which are currently scheduled for release May 23rd.
<B>V, Inc. Plasmas On Sale In Time For NCAA Tourney</B>
V, Inc. broke into the industry with a bang a few years ago by not only offering an upconverting DVD player (the Bravo D1), but by making it scary good and very cheap. V, Inc.'s HD plasmas have been well received as bang-for-the-buck champs too, and V, Inc. is dropping the prices on its plasmas even lower, just in time for the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. The VIZIO P42HDTV and P50HDM will now sell for just $1499 and $2299, respectively.
Posted: Mar 09, 2006
Published: Mar 10, 2006
<B>Program Your TiVo From Your Cel Phone</B>
It was only a matter of time until someone rolled out this killer app: TiVo and Verizon have struck a deal that will allow TiVo subscribers to program their DVRs using a Verizon cel phone. Called TiVo Mobile, this service will be offered later this year. No pricing has been announced yet.