I may have jumped on the Netbook bandwagon a little early, as these low-cost mini-notebooks are about to get a whole lot better. Especially in terms of video playback.
Any price cut is a welcome one and, slowly but surely, Vudu is getting closer to the ‘feels like free’ price point that I’ve argued is needed if the service is ever to go mass market. For that to happen, however, here’s what else Vudu needs to do.
In a joint announcement, Microsoft and Netflix have put out some numbers on the success of Netflix’s ‘Watch Instantly’ Internet TV service on Microsoft’s XBox 360 games console.
To get the Mac to talk to the PlayStation I’ve been using Nullriver’s solution, MediaLink, which, aside from occasionally needing to restart the application, has worked a treat. However, as of this week, Nullriver has some competition. Cynical Peak Software have updated their Mac to XBox 360 offering with support for the PS3.
There would of course be internal questions about how much to prop up a potential competitor, but in the social networking game, network effects (number of users) win out and Facebook has this in abundance.
Another remote control application has hit the the iPhone’s App store. This time, “Rowmote” emulates Apple’s own remote control, the Apple Remote, which used to ship for ‘free’ with the company’s consumer Macs but now has to be purchased separately at an additional cost of $19.
If the next frontier is mobile, a key battle ground is going to be location-based services. And, drilling down further, location-based social networking, such as the ability to share your current location with friends. Yesterday, Google went head-to-head with Nokia and a plethora of startups with such an application.
Spotify isn’t browser-based but instead offers a very nice desktop client (Mac and Windows) that has a distinctively iTunes look and feel to it. Since the service has licensing agreements with all four majors and a bunch of indies, one way to think of Spotify is as a massive jukebox in the sky.
Twelve months ago, free ad-supported music download service Qtrax launched in a blaze of controversy, most notably claiming it had support from all four major record labels, which was news to them. Qtrax is going after the holy grail of music, free and legal downloads, and so it wasn’t surprising that the company faced a licensing uphill battle. A year later and all the “t”s have been crossed and the “i”s dotted: EMI, Warner, Sony BMG and Universal Music are on board, and a relaunch is planned for next month.
That’s a wrap! Thanks for reading.