Sprint’s new “All-In” plan ironically includes a 600 kbps video streaming cap

sprint_all_inSprint’s “All-In” plan they announced earlier today sounds awesome. It’s simple to understand, costs only $80 per month (including the phone and access fees), and offers customers unlimited talking, texting, and data. Sounds almost too good to be true for a postpaid carrier plan, right? Well, it is. Kinda.

Some fine details in the terms and conditions of Sprint’s new plan suggests that the carrier will place a 600 kbps cap on all streaming video for users on this new plan. Yeah, 600 kbps. That’s just barely over the recommended internet speed that Google suggests for YouTube, and you can bet that’s not HD video. Read more

Vessel Beta is now on Android

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Vessel is the new way to watch early web series, music videos, and full TV segments and now it is here for Android in beta. Previously, Vessel was on iOS, but due to popular demand the company has decided to listen to customers and create an Android app as well. Vessel costs only $2.99 per month after trying it for free for the first month. There are no commitments and you can cancel at any time. If you are not yet a subscriber, you can also watch some free videos as well.

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Alibaba working on Netflix video streaming competitor in China

alibaba logoAliababa, the extremely large Chinese commerce company, is reportedly working on a video streaming service to rival Netflix in China. The service will be called TBO, or Tmall Box Office, and will operate on a mostly paid-content model. The company plans to keep around 90% of the content behind a paywall, either by subscription or a one-time fee for shows or episodes. The other 10% will be free.

The Chinese online video streaming market is very competitive, although a huge company like Alibaba stands a better chance at getting a foothold than some other contenders. Netflix still doesn’t officially have a presence in China, which likely has something to do with the poor track record of foreign companies attempting to succeed in China. Read more

Amazon prepping free video streaming service that could launch in a few months [Updated]

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Amazon may soon be going toe-to-toe with Hulu and other video streaming services in a whole new way. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Amazon plans on offering an alternative to paying $99 per year for Amazon Prime that would allow video content to be streamed without any subscription. The service would be backed by advertisements. On the surface, this competes directly with Hulu, but there is much more under the surface. Read more

HBO doesn’t mind you sharing your HBO Go password

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Normally, sharing your password to a streaming site is frowned upon. Netflix, Hulu, you name it; it’s not allowed in the terms of service and the companies generally don’t like it. HBO has taken the opposite stance, however. CEO Richard Plepler has publicly stated that account sharing is really just a marketing tool for building a newer generation of viewers. Account sharing allows more viewers to be exposed to HBO’s programming, which HBO hopes will get them “addicted” to their content. That means in the future, those viewers that were borrowing account passwords may eventually turn into paying subscribers.

It’s a bold stance, but it takes advantage of the nature of the way things work on the internet. People that just don’t want to pay for content will always find a way around it, but many users will eventually pay for a service if they see the content is worth paying for. HBO is embracing that, and I imagine it’ll pay off for them in the long run.

source: Android Spin

Amazon’s Alphabet Projects, including 3D smartphone screen, could be sign of major hardware push

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Sources in a WSJ article indicate Amazon has several hardware projects in the works that are collectively referred to as the Alphabet Projects. Perhaps most intriguing among them is a smartphone that reportedly will have a screen that can produce 3D images without the use of special glasses. Combined with complex eye-tracking software, the phone’s screen will produce the 3D images at almost any angle, producing a holographic image effect with items seeming to float above the screen. Another benefit of the technology will be the ability for users to navigate content on their phone using just their eyes. The high-end phone is just one of several devices that may signal a new strategy for Amazon in getting content into the hands of consumers. Read more

Netflix to offer $11.99 per month subscription supporting up to four simultaneous video streams

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If you’ve ever run into Netflix’s cap of two simultaneous video streams on your account and wished you could increase that cap, Netflix has an answer. Today the company announced that there will be a new pricing tier to allow a single account to deliver video to four separate devices simultaneously, up from the current cap of two. The pricing is just a tad higher than their current plan at $11.99 per month. You won’t be forced to move to that tier, and Netflix expects only about 1% of their subscribers to use the new tier, but having options is always nice.

Personally, I’ve never hit the current streaming cap, even sharing an account with family members. I can see how it might be an issue for larger families who rely on internet streaming exclusively for entertainment, though. What are your thoughts? Are any of you going to move up to the new subscription price?

source: Netflix

VUDU releases tablet app for video streaming

VUDU is a popular streaming app for movies and TV shows. Now VUDU has launched an application for everyone’s favorite new video streaming device: Android tablets. The app has a very clean, nicely designed interface that really utilizes all of the screen space on tablets’ larger screens. It’s worth mentioning that 1080p streaming isn’t supported on tablets (yet) so that may be disappointing for owners of super high-res tablets. Either way, more video streaming apps are never a bad thing. Hit the source below for the download links.

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