LATEST ADDITIONS

Jon Iverson  |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

What looks on the surface to be an announcement for a new video-game platform may turn into an attempt to control the implementation of interactive services in the digital home. Last week, Bill Gates announced at the annual Game Developers Conference that <A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com">Microsoft</A> is entering the world of video games with the introduction of a "future-generation" dedicated video game console, currently code-named X-Box, designed to deliver "action-packed" games.

Jon Iverson  |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="http://www.iblast.com">iBlast Networks</A>, which comprises 12 major television broadcast groups, announced that it has formed a national network that it says will use a dedicated portion of the digital spectrum assigned to local television stations to deliver a "wide array of high-speed, over-the-air broadband digital content and services" direct to consumers. iBlast claims that this digital content will include music, video, games, software, and other applications.

Barry Willis  |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

They have seen the future of cinema, and it is digital. The 12,000 attendees at last week's ShoWest 2000 convention in Las Vegas, the biggest annual event for theater owners, went home with both enthusiasm and concern about the effects digital technology will wreak on their industry. One major announcement was the agreement by six major theater chains that they would take their ticket sales onto the Internet.

 |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

According to the results of the DVD Owners Study, released last week by the <A HREF="http://www.ce.org">Consumer Electronics Association</A> (CEA), "consumers have overwhelmingly voiced their satisfaction with DVD." The CEA has reported that 1999 was a tremendous year for the DVD player, which became the "fastest-selling consumer electronics product in history," achieving a household penetration level of approximately 5% after only three years in the market.

Barry Willis  |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

The <A HREF="http://www.nbc.com/">National Broadcasting Company</A> has announced its withdrawal from the <A HREF="http://www.nab.org/">National Association of Broadcasters</A>. The network is departing the industry's most powerful trade group in protest of the NAB's refusal to support the network's effort to raise the federally mandated cap on the number of stations that can be owned by a single company. A majority of NAB members support the current limits on ownership.

 |  Mar 12, 2000  |  0 comments

The <A HREF="http://www.ce.org/">Consumer Electronics Association</A> has accused the American broadcasting industry of delaying the transition to digital television by refusing to make the necessary investments in equipment and programming. The consumer electronics industry and related businesses are moving forward aggressively while broadcasters drag their feet, the CEA stated in a letter delivered March 8 to <A HREF="http://www.fcc.gov/">Federal Communications Commission</A> chairman Bill Kennard.

Barry Willis  |  Mar 05, 2000  |  0 comments

As of March 1, <A HREF="http://www.sony.com/sel/">Sony Electronics</A> is offering a nice inducement to home-theater fans: a 30% reduction in the suggested retail prices of 53" and 61" high-definition rear-projection television sets. 1999 list prices for 53" and 61" HDTV RPTV models were $4499 and $5499, respectively. The equivalent models for the year 2000, the KP-53HS10 and KP-61HS10, will be priced at $3199 and $3699&mdash;a discount of approximately 30% from the previous year. Both sets are capable of displaying pictures at 1080i, the highest quality of all varieties of digital video. The price reductions are encouraging news for broadcasters as well as for consumers, as more than 120 stations nationwide now offer HD programming.

 |  Mar 05, 2000  |  0 comments

Last week, the <A HREF="http://www.ce.org">Consumer Electronics Association</A> (CEA) reported that in January 2000, for the fourth consecutive month, factory-to-dealer (not through to consumers) sales of digital television (DTV) products surpassed the 20,000-unit mark. The CEA's figures reveal that January's total of 21,008 units brings the total sales since the introduction of DTV in August 1998 to 155,410 units.

Barry Willis  |  Mar 05, 2000  |  0 comments

Net loss: Video vendor Hollywood Entertainment Corporation would be doing well if it weren't for its publicly traded online operation <A HREF="http://www.reel.com/">Reel.com</A>, which just can't make a profit no matter how hard it tries. The nation's second-largest video rental chain, <A HREF="http://www.hollywoodvideo.com/">Hollywood Video</A> enjoyed strong growth last year but was driven into the red by losses incurred by the Internet business, which reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $21.7 million.

Barry Willis  |  Mar 05, 2000  |  0 comments

Back in the good old days of video rentals, you just popped the tape in the player and started watching the movie. Then film studios figured out that they could add "trailers"&mdash;short ads for other movies&mdash;to the beginning of tapes in the hope of getting a little more exposure for their products&mdash;just like in the theater.

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