Adding Streaming Internet to Your TV

If you want to add streaming internet to your TV (or switching altogether from cable or satellite) there are at least two units to consider.  One is the AppleTV which is quite familiar to most while the other is Roku, a newer device which may be more suitable for many users.  So we thought we'd take a moment to consider both.

Let's start first with WHY you might want to consider streaming TV.  More and more, people no longer hurry to their TVs to catch their favorite program in real time.  Instead, they will record the programming to view later at their convenience.  VCRs and, later, DVRs made that possible and popular.  Now however, with so many downloading their programming via streaming internet, the DVR may become less and less relevant.

Roku's head, Anthony Wood, forecasts, "Within four years I would say that the majority of TVs will stream over the Internet versus cable and satellite.... It is inevitable that all TV is going to be delivered over the Internet."

If that is true, then let's consider two such streaming devices currently making waves.

We'll start with AppleTV, an Editor's Choice from CNet.com.  The Apple TV is a tiny streaming box for $99 that lets you stream all of the movies and TV shows available in the iTunes Store to your HDTV on a rental or purchase basis, with purchases stored in the cloud. Netflix, MLB.TV, Hulu Plus, and a handful of other online media services are available, plus music, videos, and photos can be streamed from iOS devices (iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch) using AirPlay.  Those who've already invested in iTunes content and Apple hardware will find the Apple TV to be an indispensable living-room companion, and it's an excellent streaming-video box for non-Apple folks as well.

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Your Cloud-Connected Car

The latest technology as revealed at CES 2012 includes apps for your car's media center.  Think of your Smart Phone as being imbedded in your car's dash.  Imagine the capabilities now found on your phone to now be available hands-free in your cloud-connected vehicle and in gorgeous, ultra HD audio clarity.

We're resuming our look at CNET's "Best of Show" list from CES 2012 in Las Vegas earlier this month.  I'm gonna spend a little time on this emerging technology because the marriage of automotive and digital is well underway.  The morphing of the car as a vehicle of communication and not simply transportation is practically here already!

QNX showcased a new mobile app platform they call CAR 2 based on HTML5 with an infotainment system that car manufacturers can use with a flexibility that adapts to the needs of any OEM.  In fact, CNET called it QNX's "vision for the future of dashboard technologies."

The concept Porsche Carrera they outfitted for the show had an innovative application that instantly and automatically pairs a Bluetooth smartphone. It also included ultra HD voice technology that brings stereo CD quality to phone calls. Apps integration for both front and backseat added another layer of coolness to make this car a pretty sweet ride.

The concept car offered flexible integration between tablets and in-car systems, with front-seat control of rear-seat tablets and the ability for any device to play media stored on any other device.  Automakers could begin to incorporate CAR 2 in their designs beginning mid-2012.  This video by CNET will give you the grand tour.

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