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Sonos pulls multiroom to the fore in v5.3 update

Sonos pulls multiroom to the fore in v5.3 update

Streaming multiroom audio favorite Sonos has updated its platform, making controlling several rooms of playback more straightforward, and boosting appeal on tablets. Sonos Software version 5.3, currently available to beta testers before it goes live for all users, builds on the updated Sonos controller app that the company tweaked last year - adding multiple streaming account support, among other things - bringing control over each playback zone further to the fore, as well as individual playback options for the current track, including turning the system into more of a DJ experience.

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Netflix adds The Interview on Jan 24; Pushes original content

Netflix adds The Interview on Jan 24; Pushes original content

Netflix will add controversial Sony Pictures movie The Interview to its virtual shelves on January 24th, it's confirmed, while the streaming media firm's first original feature film will debut on August 26th. The Seth Rogen and James Franco movie made a sudden appearance on pay-per-view at Christmas, but will be bundled in with an active Netflix subscription for US and Canadian users from this Saturday, the company announced today. Meanwhile, while crunching the sums on the last financial year, Netflix discovered something unexpected about just how much its content actually costs.

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Amazon is gunning for movie studios next

Amazon is gunning for movie studios next

Amazon's ambitions in original content are climbing up a notch, with plans to create a dozen movies each year that will not only be released via its Prime streaming service, but in theaters as well. The aggressive content scheme will kick off this year, Amazon has said, with Amazon Original Movies also using its heft to trim the amount of time it takes for theatrical releases to make it to on-demand services. Rather than anything up to a year between films being screened in theaters and then showing up at places like iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon's own download store, the retailer's homegrown content will take a mere 4-8 weeks.

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Logitech releases Harmony API to connect your whole home

Logitech releases Harmony API to connect your whole home

Not content with launching their own products, Logitech has unleashed an API for Harmony, turning products into a platform. The API gives interested Developers access to Logitech’s Harmony as a standalone, open platform where they can link their products to Logitech’s existing Internet of Things. Logitech says it gives Developers access to roughly 270,000 devices, with partners like IFTTT, SmartThings, and Myo already using Logitech’s API. Others, like Nest, Honeywell, and Sonos, are compatible with Harmony, making the Harmony API as much a mesh network as it is a platform.

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Here’s how Tizen on Samsung’s SUHD Smart TVs works

Here’s how Tizen on Samsung’s SUHD Smart TVs works

Samsung may have invented some new branding for its top-tier TVs, but we're more interested in how Tizen has found its way into the sets as Sammy's smart TV OS of choice. The company has been flirting with the open-source platform for the past few years, predominantly focusing on its potential on the wrist as an OS for smartwatches and wearables, but for the 2015 SUHD TV range it's being repurposed as a catch-up platform for live, on-demand, and streaming content that plays particularly nicely with smartphones and tablets. We stopped by to see how it all worked.

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Samsung SUHD TV one-ups Ultra HD with uber-colors

Samsung SUHD TV one-ups Ultra HD with uber-colors

What comes after Ultra HD when you're trying to sell people new TVs? If you're Samsung, the answer is SUHD, when the added "S" somewhat nebulous in its abbreviating but kept for the firm's most high-end models. It's not just a name and some sleek beveled edges, however, with Samsung turning to nanocrystal semiconductors to improve picture quality, contrast, brightness, and color, even running at the same 4K resolution as last year's sets. Meanwhile, under the hood of each SUHD is a new Smart TV platform powered by Tizen.

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SuperTooth takes on Sonos with Multiroom speaker system

SuperTooth takes on Sonos with Multiroom speaker system

There's no shortage of options if you want to spread music around your home, but SuperTooth thinks its Multiroom System has an edge by virtue of its affordability. Offering three zones for under $300, the system eschews WiFi in favor of a combination of Bluetooth and its own, proprietary radio connection, piping through audio from whatever sources you have on your phone or tablet. It's a tough segment to break into, though, especially when you consider well-regarded rivals like Sonos are already established.

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LG 4K TVs boost colors, add webOS 2.0 for 2015

LG 4K TVs boost colors, add webOS 2.0 for 2015

If there's one thing we expect from the Consumer Electronics Show, it's massive TVs, and LG is already getting the big set hype started with its new 4K line-up. The company's 2015 Ultra HD range will debut Wide Color LED, LG's latest finagling of pixel technology that uses various different phosphor-based LEDs for the promise of better color depth and pictures that are more lifelike. That's not the only improvement over outgoing sets, however.

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Samsung echoes eggs with 360-degree Ring speakers

Samsung echoes eggs with 360-degree Ring speakers

CES may still be a week away, but that hasn't stopped Samsung from whipping the covers off its latest audio products, a pair of egg-shaped speakers promising omnidirectional sound. The Samsung WAM7500 and WAM6500 each look distinctive, with their 2001: A Space Odyssey meets Alien pod aesthetic, but according to the South Korean firm they should sound even better too, thanks to some special tuning tech. Samsung has dubbed it "Ring Radiator", and it's all about the groove running the speakers' periphery.

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You can watch The Interview online now

You can watch The Interview online now

Controversial Sony Pictures movie The Interview has been released today across multiple streaming services, including Google Play, YouTube Movies, Xbox Video, and a dedicated site, its been announced. The film, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, will be offered for rental or outright purchase. "It was essential for our studio to release this movie," Sony Pictures said today in a statement, "especially given the assault upon our business and our employees by those who wanted to stop free speech."

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