Weekly wrapup, 19 – 23 November 2007

Here’s a summary of the week’s digital lifestyle action on last100. Note that you can subscribe to the weekly wrapups, either via the special weekly wrapup RSS feed or by email.

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Top digital lifestyle news

The big news this week was Amazon’s entry into the eBook space (see ‘Amazon to launch eBook device and service‘). The company launched its own eBook device “Kindle” and accompanying U.S.-only eBook store and service. One notable difference between the Kindle and other competing hardware-based eBook readers, is the ability to purchase and download content over-the-air using the mobile broadband standard, EVDO.

In Internet TV-related news, the set-top movie box service, Vudu, has starting offering HD content. Beginning November 23, Vudu is giving every new buyer copies of both “The Bourne Identity” and “The Bourne Supremacy” pre-loaded on their set-top boxes in HD. They also will have the opportunity to download the third movie in the trilogy, “The Bourne Ultimatum”, to own for $25 when it becomes available in mid December.

We also reported on a new Internet TV service called SyncTV, which looks to be competing with companies such as Joost and Babelgum, as well as paid-for video download stores and traditional cable TV.

Daniel Langedorf writes: “SyncTV is seeking to break the current business model where single programs can be bought at iTunes or Amazon Unbox for $2 or streamed for free from ad-supported network sites. SyncTV will allow people to subscribe to a specific channel and watch any program from it. The service, which will cost $2-$4 per channel a month, will be offered in “home-theater quality” (DVD quality) with some programming in high-definition. SyncTV brings a la carte programming to the masses, where viewers pay only for the channels they want to watch.”

More digital lifestyle news:


In our main feature this week ‘Xbox Live five years on – what’s next?‘, Mack D. Male looks at Microsoft’s online gaming service, XBox Live, and how it has evolved beyond gaming to include social networking features as well as offering non-gaming paid-for content, such as television programs and movies. Mack says that XBox Live has come a long way since it debuted five years ago, and yet there is still a lot more to come.

We also reviewed MediaGate’s MG-350HD, a PC to TV device which the company is pitching as an alternative to the AppleTV. In addition to streaming photos, music, and videos from a PC to a TV, when fitted with an internal hard drive, the MG-350HD can operate as a network attached storage device to house and playback all of a user’s home media. [Disclaimer: MediaGate is currently a last100 sponsor.]

That’s a wrap. Enjoy the rest of the weekend. 

last100 is edited by Steve O'Hear. Aside from founding last100, Steve is co-founder and CEO of Beepl and a freelance journalist who has written for numerous publications, including TechCrunch, The Guardian, ZDNet, ReadWriteWeb and Macworld, and also wrote and directed the Silicon Valley documentary, In Search of the Valley. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

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