Sony, Panasonic, Samsung team up to standardize active shutter 3D glasses

Consumer electronics companies Panasonic, Samsung, Sony and XPAND 3D (X6D Ltd.) announced on Monday that they have begun collaboration on a new standard for active shutter 3D glasses called the "Full HD 3D Glasses Initiative." Even though electronics companies are pushing 3D as the next great frontier for cinematic, home theater, and video game-based entertainment, it's been pretty much a flop all around. Earlier this year, beloved film critic Roger Ebert said 3D doesn't work in movies and never will, and Panasonic's marketing director Andrew Denham said these poor quality 3D movies are causing poor sales of 3DTVs. Nintendo's first 3D handheld console, the 3DS, was cut down in price by more than 33% only six months into its availability. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said the "drastic step" was taken to ensure more users would buy the handheld.
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American Airlines Offers Inflight Streaming

American Airlines has received FAA certification to stream video content inflight via Wi-Fi, and now is offering a library of more than 100 movies and TV shows on flights operated by 767-200 aircraft. The service is available primarily on flights between New York and Los Angeles and New York and San Francisco, though American plans to roll out the service to its entire fleet this year. “We continue to execute this strategy and lead in this space by making prudent investments in innovative, cutting-edge technologies,” said Rob Friedman, American’s VP of marketing. “During this initial phase of launch, Entertainment On Demand allows customers to access content through select personal Wi-Fi-enabled laptops, and in the coming months [we intend] to make tablets and other devices available for use with the product.” TV shows rent for 99 cents and movies go for $3.99. Movies are available for 24 hours, TV shows for 72, and both can be viewed on a portable device after the consumer has debarked, using the same browser and device.

Zediva is nuked, Hollywood rejoices

A federal court has issued a preliminary injunction against Santa Clara–based Zediva, essentially ordering a shutdown of its low-cost streaming-movie-rental service. The decision comes less than six months after the launch of the service, which aimed to curtail streaming licensing fees by renting and streaming DVDs over the Internet. Zediva launched in March, hoping to build a business from what it saw as a loophole in the way that DVDs are rented and how streaming-video-on-demand services license content. It built out a data center that housed numerous DVD players, which were hooked up to servers to deliver streaming “rentals” of those DVDs over the Internet. As a result, Zediva was able to offer streaming rentals at a much lower price than competing services that licensed the content for streaming. While most new releases on online VOD services like iTunes or Vudu are priced at around $5 each, Zediva was offering rentals for $1.99 or a package of 10 rentals for $10. It was also able to offer new releases sooner than competing subscription VOD services like Netflix, which must wait for titles to hit a certain distribution window before they’re available for streaming. Because it was buying the DVDs, it could offer new titles as soon as new releases were available for sale in stores.

CEDIA Awards Program - Finalists Announced

CEDIA has announced this year’s finalists in the Manufacturers’ Excellence Awards competition. Finalists include 30 products in the Best New Product category as well as two products in the Sustainable Lifestyle Product Innovation category, which recognizes products with an environmentally friendly approach. Winners will be announced at the Electronic Lifestyles® Awards Banquet during CEDIA EXPO on Saturday, September 10 in the Indiana Roof Ballroom. Up to 10 Best New Products will be recognized, and one Sustainable Lifestyle Product Innovation winner will be announced. Also honored at the banquet will be the 2011 Product Hall of Fame inductees as well as winners of the Designer Awards, the Attendees’ Choice Award, the CEDIA/HGTVPro.com People’s Pick Awards, and more!  View Finalists here.

Best Buy moves into the connected TV business with Tivo's user interface

Internet connected TVs are becoming a lot more mainstream. The latest sign of that is that Best Buy is announcing its own house label model, dubbed the Insignia Connected TV. Best Buy, the nation's largest gadget retailer, hopes to capture more margin in the increasingly competitive electronics business by selling its own equipment under Best Buy's house brand, rather than selling more gadgets under brand name such as Sony or Samsung. It's a strategy that has been working for a while. This TV will be the first to use Tivo's design interface, giving Best Buy's customers a user interface that is well-known as a good way for browsing for shows and watching TV - without a TiVo subscription. The TV will be available in 32-inch and 42-inch models for $499 and $699 respectively at BestBuy.com and Best Buy stores nationwide. The TVs offer a variety of ways to access movies over the web, such as Netflix, CinemaNow and YouTube. It also has applications such as Pandora, Napster, Facebook, Twitter and Photobucket.

3-D Projector Line-Up

You no longer have to be limited to 55 or 65" 3-D televisions, as you can watch 3-D movies on screens up to a 300" diagonal, depending on the image size that can be projected by the brand of projector that you select. Not all projectors are capable of projecting 3-D.  In fact, many cannot.  Even some projectors that are cited by its manufacturer as 3-D ready or 3-D capable do not process 3-D well.  Some models cannot project 3-D images from a Blu-ray player, but only from a PC that has 120 Hz output.

CEDIA 2011 - Special News Report

News Releases and Announcements from the show

CEDIA 2011 Tradeshow Report

This year CEDIA EXPO returned to Indianapolis and as usual showed off as the years premier event for the residential electronic systems industry. We walked the show floor and reached out to companies from across the industry for a peek at some of the new products that will be showcased in the coming year. Below is a compilation of some great new products that should be an interest to you. Click here to visit the CEDIA website for additional information. If your company was an exhibitor at the show, don't forget to post your company news and keep up to date. Visit our Newspage to view and post news.

How to Build Your Own Home Theater - Part 1 of 4

This is the first of a 4 part series that will walk you through the process designing and building a home theater. Many people buy a LCD television, such as a 55" or 65" flat screen, add a $200.00 "theater in a box" from Wal-Mart, and call it a home theater. Of course, the couch or lazy Boy is the seating.   This is as basic as it gets. Let's step this up a notch and see how to have a large projection screen (70" or better) and a projector, as the basis for a true home theater.  We will look at what's available to make a comfortable home theater that you will be proud to show off. 

How to Build Your Own Home Theater - Part 2 - The Projector

This is the 2nd of a 4 part series that will walk you through the process designing and building a home theater. Here is a link to Part 1 Your extra room is carpeted, painted and the screen is ready to be hung. What's next? Let's consider the projector. There are many home theater projectors on the market and it would not be practical to discuss all of these in this article. There are some features that you should look for in a projector.

How to Build Your Own Home Theater - Part 3 - The Sound System

This is the 3rd of a 4 part series that will walk you through the process designing and building a home theater. Here is a link to Part 1 and Part 2 Your room is coming together. The screen and projector are hung. Now, you need to consider the sound system. Too many people skimp on their sound system and regret it later, when they have to strain to hear the conversations or miss the depth of an explosion. Buy the best sound system that you can afford.

Internet Enabled Devices for your Home Theater

An Internet enabled television is the simplest way to connect to the Internet without turning anything else on.   Yet, you may be joined to a content provider that has partnered with a particular device that you have to use.  If you upgrade or change devices, be sure that the content service is compatible with that device.  In-Stat projects that by 2014 there will be over 230 million Internet enabled products in homes.  If Internet television is to work, all content providers will have to be compatible with all Internet ready devices.    What doors will open in the future?      Here are some of today's options.

Interview - Procella Audio

Procella came into the marketplace with a high-performance speaker system created not in a garage but as a solution for the European headquarters of one of the top audio companies in the world. Taking basic designs that come from a pro audio perspective that includes a strong cinema background, and seasoning them with studio/audiophile sensibilities, these speakers take a 'top down' approach to home theater, bringing the best performance characteristics of reference cinema systems into the home. Procella's scalable concept enables enthusiasts to create systems capable of reproducing the full dynamic range of 96/24 recordings in any room size from a living room to a 40 seat cinema.

Interview - Sanus at CEDIA 2011

CEDIA has always been and continues to be a very important show for SANUS.  It not only provides us an opportunity to introduce exciting new products and services, but it allows our product development teams to connect directly with our dealers and customers.

Is 3-D Television in Your Future?

All though 3-D television is an emerging technology, it will be main stream sooner than we expect, as 3-D cameras are improved and all television sets will be capable of reproducing 3-D accurately. Obviously, 3-D televisions are expensive now, but like allnew technology, the prices will become reasonable as more viewers step up to enjoy the wonders of the world around us. I look forward to the advancements, which will put forward great images without the glasses. The first 3-D movie was produced by Arch Oboler, of the famed radio series, "Lights Out." It was called Bwana Devil and stared Robert Stack. My first experience with 3-D was in 1953 with the horror movie, House of Wax, which was the first movie with stereophonic sound,staring Vincent Price, who became the King of 3-D by staring in three more 3-D films.

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