Business Model Evolution in OTT and On-demand Video Markets - 2012 Edition

In the study Business Model Evolution in OTT and On-demand Video Markets - 2012 Edition, IMS Research estimates that in 2011 the market for on-demand video reached 998.9 billion video transactions. Pay transactions are estimated at 7.2 billion streams/downloads in 2011, generating $16.2 billion in revenues.

The Wireless Speaker & Audio Association

The Wireless Speaker & Audio Association's remit is to advance the adoption of wirelessly transmitted, interference-free high-definition (HD) surround-sound audio in the home theater environment. We spoke to President, Jim Venable about the organization and the standard.

The Future of Wireless Energy Transfer

Nearly all of our communications are now wireless, but people and devices are still tethered to the wall by power cords. In the not too distant future, we'll be able to enjoy wireless power too.

Absolute Zero Home Theater Curtains

At HomeToys.com, we get lots of hi-tech gadgets to play with, but sometimes, it's the distinctly low-tech items that make or break a great home theater. Controlling sound and light are critical to a good home theater, so we decided to take a look out some blackout drapes from Ellery Homestyles.

Web Sites Are Built for Visitors…Not Designers

Web designers love to show you their elegant sites and how beautiful the Flash/HTML 5 stuff looks, what artistic videos they have, how gorgeously everything is laid out. Sorry, but folks aren't there for the show; they come to a website to get product/service information, to buy and get on with their lives.

Digital Signage Expo Named 2011 "Fastest 50" by Trade Show Executive Magazine

Digital Signage Expo (DSE), the world's largest and longest running International Tradeshow and Conference dedicated to digital signage, interactive technology and digital out-of-home networks (DOOH), was just named one of Trade Show Executive Magazine's 2011 Fastest 50. This award recognizes the fifty fastest-growing trade shows in North America based on total net square footage of exhibit space, number of exhibitors and attendance growth between 2010 and 2011. DSE was a previous winner of the Fastest 50 award in 2007 and 2009 when the now defunct TradeShow Week magazine was sponsoring this awards program. By winning in 2011, DSE is now a 3-time winner of this prestigious award.

Nortek Launches New "Core Brands" Group

Nortek, Inc. (Nasdaq: NTK), a global diversified company with leading brands and innovative, technology-driven products and solutions for residential and commercial applications, today announced the formation of Core Brands, a new group that combines the product and marketing strengths of 10 of the company's formerly independent audio, power management and control brands operating within its Technology Solutions segment. Including Nortek's Aton®, BlueBOLT®, Elan®, Furman®, Niles®, Panamax®, Proficient®, SpeakerCraft®, Sunfire® and Xantech® brands, Core Brands has more than 190 years of combined experience in the residential, commercial and professional markets and over 4,300 direct customer accounts in multiple distribution channels in the U.S. and worldwide.

Sony readying super-sized 84-inch 4K TV

Sony plans to introduce a super-sized 84-inch LCD television during IFA 2012, Europe's major consumer electronics show, a source told CNET. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed to CNET that the upcoming 84-inch TV can display a massive 3,840x2,160 resolution (four times the number of pixels in a conventional 1080p set), also known in the industry as 4K. We learned that the 84-inch Sony TV features a side-lit LCD panel (think thin) and removable speakers. In terms of design, our source describes the aesthetics as a reimagined retro-style appearance with a modern twist.  

Video Quality and Service Assurance

IneoQuest offers video quality and service assurance technologies and solutions that enable companies to monitor, aggregate, gather, and analyze video data across their video networks. They provide the intelligence needed to make better business decisions for delivering the highest quality video experience and controlling operational expenditure.

PC-based HD Video Conferencing

With Vaddio's EasyUSB tools, you now have pro AV computer peripherals to easily transform a personal computer into an effective and affordable meeting room system. Whether looking to design a small video conferencing system, or a large integrated lecture capture classroom, Vaddio gives you all the tools you need to make your software applications work in a real world AV environment.

The Changing Face of Hotel In-Room Technology

Many hotels' technology offerings are limited to basic Wi-Fi and over-priced in-room movies. Trying to hook-up a laptop or personal media device to in-room electronics is virtually impossible. Changes are afoot, and Roomlinx is one of the pioneers in making life on the road for the tech-savvy traveler a much more satisfying experience.

Thin bezels give video walls appeal in retail, transport

Ever-narrower bezels that allow banks of displays to be perceived as a single screen are increasing the popularity of video walls in major digital signage sectors such as retail and transportation, according to new research. A report from Futuresource Consulting forecasts that 380,000 video walls will be installed this year, up 60 percent on 2011’s shipments. “Recent innovations have breathed new life into this comparatively mature industry,” said Parmjit Bhangal, a market analyst with the firm. “Since 2009, LED backlight solutions have been integrated into rear projection displays, negating the costs of bulb replacement and maintenance. “However, LCD super-narrow-bezel displays have been the real game-changer, finally offering a viable alternative to rear projection devices and plasma screens, allowing vendors to drive new revenue streams from new markets, most notably retail and public display, as well as defending their positions in video-based verticals.” That super-narrow-bezel (SNB) category accounted for more than 80 percent of the total video wall market last year, Bhangal added.

3D@Home Consortium and International 3D Society Merge to Form World's Largest 3D Organization

To better serve the growing global theatrical, television, video game, and mobile 3D marketplace and professional community, the International 3D Society (I3DS) and the 3D@Home Consortium today announced plans to merge operations and activities. With members in 20 countries and chapters in China, Japan, Korea, Europe, the UK and North America, the new organization will be known as the International 3D Society & 3D@Home. The Merger was ratified by both organizations' leadership and is effective immediately. "This newly formed organization will serve to spearhead the growth and expansion of the 3D entertainment industry across the entire ecosystem - from content conception and development, to consumer education and adoption," said Tom Cosgrove, Co-Chair of I3DS & 3D@Home and President and CEO of 3net. "Across all platforms where 3D is expanding, everywhere consumers are consuming 3D content, and in any way the 3D format is being utilized, our organization is there to support our members and advance the growth of this prolific medium."

Miracast - A Challenger to Apple's AirPlay

Between my wife and me, we have three AppleTV’s, two iPhones, two iPads, a MacBook Pro and two Windows laptops. One of the single best features we use on the Apple devices is AirPlay. Sure, the AppleTV can stream virtually anything that’s already in the iCloud or in a known location on the network, but all too often, I have friends over and have something on my iPhone/iPad that I want to show them. Rather than copying it somewhere, passing the device around the room, or have several people hunching over it, I simply turn on my 50-inch plasma and stream it to the TV using AirPlay and the AppleTV. Sure, if it’s something on YouTube, I could search on the AppleTV, but frankly, I’d rather go to the dentist than use those infernal on-screen keyboards. At one of my consulting clients, we recently equip all the meeting rooms with Sharp 80-inch screens, MacMini’s (with Bootcamp, so they can run Windows too) and AppleTV’s. Anyone sporting an iDevice or a recent Mac with Mountain Lion can stream to the TV. When it comes to content on my PC it’s a whole other, very sorry, story. One of my laptops is a fairly new Core i7 model, and supports Intel’s WiDi. At last count, there were two devices available that would connect to a TV and neither had other compelling features. There are several proprietary solutions on the market for streaming wireless HDMI, but I don’t need any more set-top boxes, especially ones that won’t work with my friend’s devices. The Apple eco system, makes it all so simple: when my iFriends come over, anyone can throw up anything on the big screen. For my Droid/WM buddies, it’s a can of mal-connected worms. The Wi-Fi Alliance has a plan to address this (WiDi RIP). Wi-Fi Direct enables peer-to-peer connections between Wi-Fi devices and Miracast (Wi-Fi Display) supports display of video content from consumer electronics and mobile devices. According to ABI Research, by 2014, 66% of consumer electronics devices are expected to support Wi-Fi Direct and the majority of these will be Miracast certified too. Major chipmakers, such as Nvidia, Texas Instruments, Marvell and Broadcom are all on board. Let’s hope Intel recognize that the writing’s on the wall for WiDi and support the open effort too.  

Is AppleTV set to become a cable box?

There have been a lot of reports of Apple negotiating content deals with the major networks and the possibility of a la carte available via the iTunes store. According to the Wall St Journal, current discussions are centered on Apple producing a fully fledge set top box. TiVo Inc. currently dominates this sector of the market, but has a miniscule installed base compared to users who are happy to rent a DVR form their cable provider for $10-15 a month. For those looking for a solution outside of their cable operator’s offering, an Apple-based device would be an attractive proposition if it provided the functionality of the current AppleTV. Such a device would allow users to get virtually all of their Cable and OTT content on a single device (and presumably stream wirelessly around the house). The device would also give TiVo a run for their money, especially fi there were no subscription fees on an Apple-branded device.

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