Tag Archives: facebook

Facebook for iPad finally out, released today

After an extremely long wait, Facebook released their iPad optimized application today. The version is 4.0 and the new application is common for both iPhone and iPad devices.  Surprisingly, the app is a bit similar with the one from HP TouchPad, but more fluid. Here are some screenshots:

With Nearby, you can see when your friends checked in, the messages are nice and streamlined and finally, the Facebook chat works well, similar with other clients from Yahoo for example. The app also supports multi-touch but it more a gimmick than a useful feature. Other than iPad compatibility, there are several other changes worth mentioning:

– Games & Apps: Play games and access your favorite apps on the go
– Navigation: Send a message or see your notifications from any screen, and swipe to browse Facebook without losing your place in News Feed
– Bookmarks: Your groups, pages and apps are all in your left-hand menu, and the ones you use most are right on top
– Search: Search for anything on Facebook—people, apps, pages and more—without having to click around or switch views
– Security: We’ve added a few updates to make the app more secure

I am certainly happy that our preferred social network is finally on iPad, but now that the milestone has been reached, I can only Read More…

TiVo Premiere is now free, but subsidized via a $20 monthly fee

Well, folks, you all read about the latest deals popping out all over the web with prices for Tivo Premiere going as low as $99 (and immediately selling them on eBay for $150). Starting today, you can actually have them for free, so be sure not to fall for any “sales” you will see. What’s the catch? TiVo decided to subsidize them via a rather hefty $20 month contract for 2 years, $99 if you want only a 12-months contract. The Premiere XL version is $299 with 12 month contract and while not being extra large, it brings you THX certification. The free devices are no farther than TiVo’s own website, so you don’t really need to shop around.

TiVo premiere is the current TiVo flagship line of HD DVR boxes adding beside DVR services, web clients for Netflix, BlockBuster, Amazon Video on Demand, Twitter, Facebook, Digg, Pandora, Rhapsody, Music Choice,  Live 365, Picasa, Photobucket and many more, and, the recently added Hulu Plus.

Sony Dash gets HULU Plus

Do you remember Sony Dash? It used to make big waves a while ago and then, after some bad reviews concerning its speed and ergonomics, was somewhat dormant and out of the news? Well, it is back again with a vengeance because it can now offer Hulu Plus starting today!

Based on the popular Chumby platform and inheriting over 1000 applications this way, Sony Dash is a small wireless Internet connected device with a 7 inches 800×480 resolution, 500Mhz processor with 32kB I/D L2 cache; 256 MB, 667MHz DDR2 DRAM and doubling as a media streamer and capable to connect to a myriad online services including Pandora, AccuWeather, YouTube, Flickr, Netflix, Slacker, Amazon video on Demand,  and, of course now Hulu Plus (for the standard 9.99 / month). It also doubles as an alarm clock and social network hub showing messages and news from Twitter and Facebook, your e-mail messages from GMail and others, etc. Currently on sale at Amazon for $169.

What is more interesting though, is that apparently this little device has a strong WAF (Wife Approval Factor) because it comes with bundled content from Martha Stewart, like “Dinner Tonight™ Recipe of the Day, video health tips from Dr. Oz and so on :D.

Samsung BD-C7500 Review and Samsung Apps

1. Introduction

Without a doubt, Samsung BD-C7500 looks really nice. Described as the world’s slimmest Blu-ray player BD-C7500 brings not only good looks in the equation but also a large set of media streaming features, a fast boot time and a plethora of web clients thanks to Samsung Apps store, the first store by my knowledge to offer applications to run on both TV and media streaming boxes / Blu-ray players. Let’s not forget that Apple TV doesn’t support applications and Google TV’s Android Marketplace compatibility will only arrive next year.

While Blu-ray capabilities of today’s players are fairly good and I doubt many of us could perceive differences in the output quality, especially on a HDMI connection, the media streaming and web clients implementation differ wildly, and this is what makes the subject of today’s review. The screenshot and observations should apply to all Samsung 2010 Blu-ray players and connected TVs implementing Samsung Apps. Most of the Samsung TVs released in 2010 support Samsung Apps and all of Samsung’s new Blu-ray players including BD-C8000, BD-C7900, BD-C6900, BD-C6800,  BD-C5900, BD-C7500, BD-C6500 and BD-C5500.

2. Samsung BD-C7500 Unpacking and Design

Read More…

Western Digital WD TV Live Hub media streamer launched with 1TB, 1080p, DLNA and MKV support

The latest entrance in the media streamers crowd comes from Western Digital who, while a storage company, found a good way to charge a premium for their storage devices by building some media streaming functionality around them.

The WD TV Live Hub is based in part on their very successful WD TV Live Plus line (review here)  and packs a 1TB hard-drive inside as well. The box scores additionally 1080p video playback, an HDMI 1.4 and Gigabit Ethernet connectors, a fairly good web client support with Netflix (including movie categories browsing), Blockbuster, Pandora, YouTube, Flickr, AccuWeather, MediaFly and even Facebook.

The video codec support was historically one of the strong points for the entire WD TV Live line and the WD TV Live Hub doesn’t disappoint either, playing pretty much every video format under the sun like Divx, XVid, MKV, h.264. MOV, MPEG 4, etc. The box includes a solid UPNP / DLNA support as well and it plays well with DLNA servers as PlayON or PS3 Media Server.

The Western Digital WD TV Live Hub media streamer is available for $199 at BestBuy or WD’s online store.

Check WD’s full Presss Release, photo gallery and full codec support after the break. Read More…

Zune HD gets Live Messenger and games, all free

Nobody knows exactly the future of Zune HD, but with the upcoming Windows Phone 7, it might be well forgotten. If anything, Microsoft has a way of killing products that don’t sell in millions, and the ill fated Kin family is just one of the latest examples.

However, Microsoft just did a nice gesture and released the biggest Zune HD applications update in several months: Windows Live Messenger and three games: Castles & Cannons, WordMonger and Dr. Optics. Zune HD Windows Live Messenger joins to several other social applications already supported by Zune HD like Facebook, Flickr and MySpace. Not a bad collection but we already know Microsoft used Zune platform to test the market for their particular user interface, so Zune hardware won’t be part of the company’s plans for long, at least not in the current incarnation.

Zune HD Windows Live Messenger also integrates with FaceBook (we know Microsoft has a financial interest in Facebook and also owns about 1.6% they bough for $240 millions back in 2007). The FaceBook integration lets users check for photos, videos, status updates, etc. Zune HD Messenger also can connect to MySpace and Flickr as well. The only questions is: Anybody still uses Live Messenger? I used to use it but all my friends moved to Skype or Yahoo so I did not have too much of a choice.

Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft goes on a suing spree

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen just filled a patent violation suit against no less than 11 companies, Wall Street Journal reports. The big 11 are Apple and Google, AOL Inc., eBay Inc., Facebook Inc., Netflix Inc., Office Depot Inc., OfficeMax Inc., Staples Inc., Yahoo Inc. and YouTube. Paul Allen owns patents related to optimizing Internet user experience that he claims the companies named in the lawsuit are infringing. We cannot stop noticing that Paul did not sue Microsoft (presumably because he still owns a big chunk of the company) and Amazon (because it is located in his childhood town ? oh, memories 🙂 ) No damages amount is requested at this point, but I’m sure we will enjoy the figure when it becomes public.

If the lawsuit has indeed merits (and if it won’t get settled out of the court) it might impact negatively the way we experience the Internet since a big part of current functionality is covered by the above mentioned patents.

Guy pretends 84 percent from Facebook

A guy from New York named Paul Ceglia says he is entitle to 84% of Facebook stock. How? Well, based on the lawsuit data, Mark Zuckerberg hired him in 2003 to develop a website which eventually morphed into what Facebook is today.  The terms of the contract are somewhat unusual (but who are we to judge?) and based on the lawsuit info, entitled Paul Ceglia to 50 percent share and a mere 1000$ cash. What is even more unusual is that Paul claims Zuckerberg also agreed to pay 1 percent shares a day until the project’s completion…(Who does that? You would expect the longer it takes for the project to be completed, the LESS money/shares/whatever a developer would receive, past the date agreed in the contract for the completion). All in all, it adds up to 84% since the project was deemed completed bu Feb 4, 2004.

If you are curious enough, check the full lawsuit document here. Meantime, we are waiting in delight to see if this is yet another frivolous lawsuit we all should be so proud for, or the real deal. What makes this lawsuit interesting though is the existence of a contract, but its validity in relation with Facebook entity as it is today will of course have to be proved.

Popbox sets ship date, no Netflix at launch

Popbox issued a statement regarding the ship date: it is now July 23rd, so no luck for the hopeful ones that expected their box to be shipped in time for July 4th. Another dissapointing news is that Netflix will not make it at launch, if ever.

Compared with the initial announcement at CES 2010, the current list is a letdown. Beside the notable lack of Netflix support, several other clients like Facebook didn’t make the cut either. If history taught us something is that customers don’t react in a positive way when a company creates a lot of hype and then fails to deliver. I only hope Syabas will survive this blow, especially when competitor boxes supporting Netflix are popping out all over the place.

Popbox parent company, Syabas made available the following list of supported Web Apps at launch: Read More…

Silverlight 4 Facebook client

According to NewTeeVee, Microsoft’s Silverlight client reached critical mass being installed on more than 60% of all Internet devices according with Microsoft exec. Brad Becker, director of product management for rich client platforms at Microsoft. Beside GPU acceleration, Silverlight 4 offers a bunch of useful features like multi-touch, accelerometers support, video-camera and mic support to promote voip solutions inside the web browser, etc.

Silverlight client is Microsoft’s answer to Adobe Flash and as we all now, is the technology behind Netflix’s movie streaming. Recently launched is the Silverlight 4 client, RC version and a new Silverlight client for Facebook that offers photos, feeds, Read More…