4 Kurious

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4 Kurious
Number 91
Broadcast Date October 12, 2015
Episode Length 59:54
Hosts Brian Brushwood, Tom Merritt
Guests Roberto Villegas

Cable companies want control of their boxes, do you care? Hulu’s going VR and Roku dominates many things including 4K.

Guests

Intro Video

Primary Target

Congress directed the FCC to evaluate new standards for downloadable security on set-top boxes.
Last protocols established in the mid-1990s allowing for TiVo and the like to offer competing cable box devices
Cable industry and Hollywood proposal
Allow content operators (cablecos) to provide own apps and interfaces
Third-party devices could only display software designed and controlled by MVPDs.
Tech companies “virtual head-end” proposal
Programming forced into simple format
Device-makers create user interfaces and implement features
Could disrupt contracts dictating channel placement
Could allow app services like HBO to unbundle

Signals Intelligence

Hulu VR experience ready for November when Gear VR goes on sale
Hulu head of distribution Tom Connolly said Friday its considering original VR series.
Freddie Wong making VR short film “The Big One” alongside Hulu original series
Typical virtual environment for watching normal content. Sit in Jerry’s apartment to watch Seinfeld.
70% of Hulu viewing on a TV. Roku the most popular.
Live programming in ‘if’ mode. As in not sure if they'll do it.
Emarketer forecasts Hulu will have bigger growth than Amazon and Netflix over next 4 years
Next year, Hulu will see 11.8 percent growth in subscribers, compared to 11.1 percent for Netflix and 12.3 percent for Amazon.
Later this year: miniseries “11/22/63” will debut, starring James Franco.
This year 63 percent of OTT users subscribe to Netflix, compared to 36 percent for Amazon and 33. 1 percent for Hulu.
By 2019, that will rise to 71.7 percent for Netflix, 44.4 percent for Amazon, and 41.2 percent for Hulu.

Gear Up

Roku 4 streaming player
Supports 4K content playback 60fps (better framerate than Apple or Amazon, same as TiVo Bolt)
Auto-adapt to quality of streaming video
802.11ac
Button on box makes remote make sounds (buzz or ring)
New 4K row in channel store, as well as 4K spotlight app
Send photos from phone to 4K screen
Pre-order now shipping Oct. 21 $129.99
HBO Now available in Roku Channel store now. Sign up through Roku and get a 30-day free trial.
Roku 7.0 os
Will come to Roku 3, 4 and streamign stick
cleaner UI
universal search displays results in descending order by price
search for actors, dorectors as well as specific ttitle
Track all that using Feed. Can alert when new content available
App can now browse content, add things to feed, add channels
Later this year will allow app to work w/o being on same network as device.

Front Lines

For the first time since May 2014, Netflix is raising prices for new customers. Standard two-streams plan goes from $8.99 to $9.99 a month in the US. Current customers will stay at their current rate. Login to your account to see how long that rate is guaranteed.
Sony will launch a universal remote for the PS4 in North America later this month for $30. The remote will control the interface and a range of apps as well as three additional devices.
A Forrester Research study surveyed 32,000 adults in the US and found 18% of them have never paid for traditional TV. 7 of that 18 percent represent people aged 18-31. The survey found that 6% of the US are cord-cutters and estimates by 2025 half of 18-32 year-olds will not pay for TV in the current model. 76% of US Adults are “cord-havers”
Paramount is owned by Viacom which sued YouTube over unauthorized free movies and TV shows uploaded to the platform.
Vudu updated their android app to make it easier to use and add HD playback at 720p and 1080p. Something the iOS app can’t do yet. Oddly the feature isn’t available yet for Android TV.
Bloomberg says its sources say Amazon is talking to CBS and NBC about a linear TV service. The sources say deliberations are preliminary.

Under Surveillance

Vimeo unveiled its funding three new originals. A new 6-episode season of relationship drama The Outs in Q1 2016. And two comedy specials, “Bianca Del Rio’s Rolodex of Hate Comedy Special: Live from Austin” in December and Darby Forever a short film from SNL cast member Aidy Bryant in Q1 2016.
vvatch.tv is a stream of curated YouTube clips, often cut from a longer video. It’s supposedly a preview of a curated streaming service.

Dispatches From The Front

I found it interesting that Tom suggests that TiVo look to Roku for inspiration on how to proceed going forward. Given that Roku was started by ReplayTV founder Anthony Wood, there's probably some institutional bias against adopting Roku's model for, well, anything.

Keep up the good work,

- Mike



Hey Brian and Tom!

A few episodes ago, you had on the guy who runs pluto.tv, and after checking it out, I've fallen in love. It's great to be able to "flip through the channels" again. They also have a lot of great programming.

Thanks for bringing this great site to our attention!

Love the show

- Drew



Hey guys. You've had several people say why they want the ability to download streaming video for later playback, but my situation hasn’t been mentioned yet. I have satellite internet service that has a low monthly bandwidth cap – except for a few hours in the middle of the night when I can download anything without a cap. If a service allows downloads, I can grab shows I’d like to watch during the “free” times, and watch them later without worrying about quickly blowing through my cap. In fact, because Amazon just added the download feature, I finally got Amazon Prime. If Netflix ever adds this feature, I would order Netflix, too."

- Micah



"How many people have speakers with headphone-sized jacks on them. My home speakers are all wired up with speaker wire.

Am I missing something with this Chromecast speaker thing?

- Walt




"I did it! I cut the cable cord, but i did go Dish with there 2 year price lock (50/mo), and I have to tell you.. Dish doesn't get enough credit. Great tech, great price, and a free year of Netflix, that works on the Hopper Sling box.. all included in that 50/mo price tag. And I have been traveling a lot in the past 2 months, the Sling capabilities have made it nice and easy to get my Dr. Who/Mr. Robot fix without the torrents.

If it wasn't for my pesky kids (it's really their technophobe grandmother) ;), I would have completely cut the cord long ago, but this option is the best deal i found if you have to keep some 'normal tv' around. Thought i would chime in. Keep it up!

- Joe from LA



YouTube

Links



Preceded by:
"When You Don't Know What You Want"
4 Kurious
Followed by:
"Netflix and Chips"