The last few years have seen the podcast audio format return as a popular entertainment medium, with the hit series Serial serving as a prime example of the large audience they can draw in. Apple seems to recognize this, along with the fact that there are a number issues frustrating podcast producers. A new report from The New York Times says the company recently met with several leading podcasters to discus the format's future.
Changes in how easy Apple Music is to use aren't the only upcoming revamp of the streaming service, insiders say, with its high-profile social aspects said to be sidelined. Apple Music Connect was announced last year with great fanfare, Apple bringing musician Drake on-stage at WWDC 2015 to describe how artists could use the system to engage more directly with fans and bring them behind-the-scenes with the recording process.
Apple has long offered an education discount for teachers and students on its iMac and MacBook hardware, but now it's also going to add a subscription to the Apple Music service to the mix as well. Starting today, Apple Music will now offer a student membership option with a significantly discounted subscription price: just $4.99 per month, compared to the standard $9.99 per month non-students pay.
Intentionally reducing the quality of the video you're watching may sound strange, but Netflix's new granular control over bandwidth could very well save you from cellphone bill-shock. The streaming video company has come through on its promise to give Netflix app users more flexibility in the bitrate at which they watch movies and TV shows, after being criticized by some for chewing through too much of their data allowance.
Your Periscope witticisms, comedy gold, earnest real-talk, and harsh-but-fair relationship advice can now live on forever, with Twitter adding an easy way to save recordings. Previously, videos streamed through Periscope would be available for replay for a 24 hour period after broadcast, but at that point they'd be deleted altogether.
While the Apple Music has been Apple's biggest venture into the consumer music market since iTunes, the streaming service has had a rough first year and been subject to much criticism. But it looks like the first major upgrade is on the way, as a new report from Bloomberg says this year's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June will see the debut of an overhauled Apple Music, with a focus on being easier to use.
Marvel's superhero movies have been dominating the box office for years already, and now it's becoming clear that they will soon do the same on Netflix. The streaming service has confirmed that it will be making a new series for The Punisher after the character's recent popularity on season 2 of Daredevil. Actor Jon Bernthal will continue in the roll of vigilante anti-hero Frank Castle, who arrives in Hell’s Kitchen to dish out justice with plenty of guns and violence.
Sonos' streaming speakers are gaining another source of tunes, with Amazon Prime Music graduating from its beta on the popular audio players. The support had begun trials in October last year as Amazon and Sonos worked out the kinks, with the 1m+ tracks Amazon offers to listeners as part of their annual Prime subscription able to be added to Sonos playlists and mixed with music from other sources.
The folks at Backblaze have released a system they call Storage Pod 6.0, and they've open-sourced the whole works. Their aim is to drive down the cost of creating a data storage server (your own personal cloud) while they improve the reliability and durability of said servers each time they release a new version. Their first model was Storage Pod 1.0, which was launched all the way back in 2009. Back then their costs were $0.11/GB for 67.5TB of storage in a 4U box. Fast forward to 2016 and they've reduced that cost again, significantly.
The mysterious HBO special from Beyoncé titled Lemonade finally aired last night, and as almost everyone guessed, it's related to a new album from the pop/R&B singer. Described as a "visual album," which explains the video element that aired exclusively on HBO, the songs of Lemonade were made available on Tidal just minutes after the TV special ended. In what's becoming a trend recently, at least for artists with ownership stake in Tidal, the new album will be exclusive to the service, but also surprising is that Lemonade can only be streamed, not purchased.
Twitch, the video game live-streaming website, is taking a few step closer to being a social network. The company has announced a new Friends feature that, like just about every other social service on the internet, lets users connect and add friends on the site through their profile page. In addition to adding other users as a friend, you'll be able to see when they're online and chat via private messages.