LTE connectivity is great, but sometimes there are places in the country where it’s not yet available, not to mention patchy areas of coverage in areas which do have it. What’s a man to do without high speed internet access on the go? Cable companies might have the answer. Several of the major players have partnered up to provide WiFi access to all their customers across the United States, with around 50,000 hotspots to connect to.
If you switched cable providers for the express purpose of being able to watch TV on your gaming console, then hopefully the companies AT&T and Microsoft were not part of that decision. AT&T has dropped its U-verse TV service from the Xbox 360, but it's only temporary as the company says it wants to tweak the service so that it can "improve and enhance this functionality."
If you're a Dish Network subscriber, you may be all too familiar with the repeated threats that the cable channel AMC might be dropped from its lineup. Of course, pay TV operators and content providers go through this song and dance every time a new contract is up for renewal. But this may be the first time we've heard such a blunt argument as for why the cable operator isn't willing to pay a lot of money for a network - because Netflix is making the network worth less.
I’ve often been asked by friends and family that have made the leap if I would ever consider cutting out cable television, ditching my service with my provider, and moving into the great, cord-cutting frontier. Those who press me say that if I make the move, I’ll be able to enjoy nearly all the same entertainment, but I will no longer need to pay Time Warner Cable for the, uh, privilege, of using its service.
In a study that potentially seems too forward-thinking to be useful, analyst group NPD has determined that eight years from now, the average cable or satellite TV bill will be $200 per household. In 2011, it was $86. Of course, there are viable questions about whether or not cable as we know it will even exist that far in the future, but the point of the study is to show that increased competition is not at all driving down the cost of pay TV.
Last year, services like Netflix and Hulu provided enough entertainment for more than a million people in the US to cancel their cable or satellite TV subscriptions. That brings the total number of people who have made such a move to 2.65 million since 2008. These are people who specifically said they canceled pay TV service because they were switching to Web-based video options.
In what seems like an unusual turn of events at first glance, the head of Netflix is taking to social media to talk about wanting to access HBO Go, not as a competing company executive but as a normal guy who just likes good entertainment. It's a very weird thing to see Hastings post on Facebook, since he has been very vocal about saying that HBO is Netflix's biggest competitor. But then again, his Facebook post is actually more focused on criticizing Comcast.
After coming under fire for its Xbox Live streaming service, which apparently tapped into a private IP network, because of potential net neutrality issues. Critics slammed the service because in the Xbox Live FAQ, Comcast said its content was "being delivered over our private IP network and not the public Internet." That raised concerns that Comcast was not playing by the rules of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
Even though every single major broadcast network has pending legal action against Aereo, the company nevertheless launched its service as promised, today in New York City. Aereo is a groundbreaking platform that takes existing free antenna signals from the metropolitan airspace, and retransmits it through the Internet so that city dwellers can tune into live TV for free. As you might expect, not everyone is excited.
Several days after Netflix said it liked the idea of potentially partnering with cable and satellite providers to make Netflix an integrated part of their services, the largest cable operator has come forward to say, "Thanks but no thanks." The company apparently feels it's good enough on its own, and doesn't like the idea of partnering with a service that many people see as a direct competitor.