The promise of smart, connected devices is that they give us functionality beyond what a “basic box” can offer. Consumers have been adding internet-based entertainment options to TV sets for years, usually thru external devices like Chromecast, Roku, or Apple TV. In recent years, television manufacturers began adding native apps that run inside their TV sets. These apps allow users to access different services right there on their TVs. But these types of native apps aren’t usually updated as often as their set-top box counterparts.
Media-streaming technology is constantly changing, so it’s very important for these types of apps to stay current. In an unfortunate turn for some Sony Bravia TV owners, the company announced it will no longer update its native YouTube app:
It has been confirmed that the “New YouTube on TV” app on 2012 Sony BRAVIA TVs will experience symptoms of “Black Screen and Freezing”, or an “Error Message will be displayed and the video will stop playing”.
The symptoms being experienced are not a failure of the TV, but are as a result of specification changes made by YouTube that exceed the capability of the TV’s hardware.
As a result, Sony have decided to remove the YouTube icon for the 2012 Bravia TVs on 30th September 2016.
The YouTube application will no longer be available for the 2012 Bravia TVs after 30th September 2016.
If you’ve been enjoying YouTube on a 2012 Bravia TV, you’ll need to look for another way to get those videos.
The concept of the skreens video mixing box is that it takes multiple HDMI sources such as an X-Box, Roku, Apple TV, etc. and mixes it in user-configurable windows on a single large screen via HDMI. The individual video screen input sizes are controlled in real-time via iPad and Android tablet apps. The skreens box will be coming in two versions, a 2 HDMI port version, and a Pro version with 4 HDMI ports. Both versions have an integrated web browser.
The 4 HDMI port skreens Pro box is also capable of streaming the mixed 1080p video live to Twitch or YouTube.
Both models of the skreens boxes should be available in the second half of 2016. Final pricing has yet to be set.
You can sign up for product updates at the skreens.com website.
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There are few events that are bigger and more important than the Nobel Prize awards ceremony. This gives credit to those who do the most important work — the research on diseases, figuring out a complicated economy, helping the world’s neediest people, working for peace and much more.
The extravaganza gets under way with a big show and this year that gala will be carried live via YouTube. The show will feature many performers, most notable is former Tonight Show host Jay Leno.
The Google-owned video giant also promises extras — “Exclusive to the live stream, YouTube star Derek Muller of Veritasium will host a backstage pre-show to give you a unique look at what goes on behind-the-scenes”.
You’ll need to get moving because the show is set to air live today beginning at 1:30pm EST, that’s 19:30 CET.
Watching a video is one thing, but watching one in full surround is quite another matter. The technology makes for better immersion in your viewing experience, though it’s tricky to shoot and has been more difficult to upload and let people view your wonderful clips. That is changing now as YouTube introduces the technology to upload these clips.
“You could let viewers see the stage and the crowd of your concert, the sky and the ground as you wingsuit glide, or you could even have a choose-your-own-adventure video where people see a different story depending on where they look. Only you know what’s possible”, says project manager Sanjeev Verma.
This will be available via the YouTube app for Android — simply move your phone or tablet around to scroll around the screen. Users can also do the same with YouTube.comand Chrome by utilizing the mouse to roll around the video.
If you happen to be located near Los Angeles then you can stop by the YouTube Space L.A. and learn more about what is happening. The show is being hosted by the Creator Team and will run into April. Google promises that it will “blow your mind”.
Have you ever wondered why a YouTube video is taking a long time load, buffering, or refusing to play? YouTube has started pointing people towards the answer to that question. A blue bar will appear underneath the video that asks, “Experiencing Interruptions?” Click on the button that says “Find out why”, and the answer is revealed.
YouTube will automatically send you to Google’s new website, which is called Video Quality Report. It will show you the video streaming quality results for your provider in your area. Quartz describes it as “like a report card for your delinquent ISP”.
The notification system that YouTube has started using reminds me of what Netflix used to do. When a video was loading too slowly, Netflix was displaying a notification like: “The Verizon network is crowded right now”. Verizon threatened legal action, and Netflix has stopped doing that.
It has been said that efforts like what Netflix used to do, and what YouTube is doing now, are an attempt to shame internet providers who offer shoddy service. It is also a way make consumers acutely aware of which providers are better than others. That will enable people to switch to better ones (in areas where more than one choice is available).
It is also a way for YouTube (and previously, Netflix) to subtly point out what would happen if internet providers were allowed to create a “fast lane”. Those who didn’t get how net neutrality might affect them could have the “lightbulb” go on after seeing how a slow connection from their internet provider directly affects them.
The music videos that you enjoy watching on YouTube may not be available for much longer. YouTube has plans to launch a paid streaming music service. It is expected to launch at the end of this summer. It is going to allow people to listen to music without any ads. Other features include the ability to listen to music offline and to listen to an artist’s entire album (instead of individual songs).
That might sound good to some people who currently enjoy streaming music services like Spotify or Pandora. On the other hand, some feel that YouTube’s service may result in less music options than you may be expecting. There is criticism that YouTube might block the music videos of labels who don’t agree with the terms it offers in its contracts.
The Worldwide Independent Network (WIN) has concerns about YouTube’s paid streaming service. WIN released a statement in which it points out that YouTube has “apparently negotiated separate agreements with three major labels – Sony, Warner, and Universal”.
WIN also commented on its opinion about how YouTube is approaching independent music companies. In their statement, the organization said:
At a time when independent music companies are increasing their global market share WIN has raised major concerns about YouTube’s recent policy of approaching independent labels directly with a template contract and an explicit threat that their content will be blocked on the platform if it is not signed.
According to WIN members, the contracts currently on offer to independent labels from YouTube are on highly unfavorable, and non-negotiable terms, undervaluing existing rates in the marketplace from existing music streaming partners such as Spotify, Rdio, Deezer and others.
Personally speaking, the music videos that I seek out on YouTube are the ones from independent artists. I’ve long been a supporter of independent artists and bands. I play their music in my podcasts, make an effort to draw attention to their latest songs and albums through social media, and buy their albums when I am able to. I find it sad that YouTube doesn’t see the value of the bands and artists that I spend the majority of my time listening to.
Perhaps unsurprisingly given Google’s now somewhat defunct plans for GoogleTV, YouTube has been one of the glaring omissions from the Roku platform. But not any longer. Roku has announced that a YouTube channel is now available on the Roku 3 in USA, Canada, UK and the Republic of Ireland. Older Rokus will be getting the channel next year, though the exact timing is unclear. For non-Roku owners, a channel is roughly equivalent to an app on other platforms.
The YouTube channel supports full 1080p HD and the press release suggests that subscriptions will carry over from other platforms so that your favourites can easily be seen on the Roku. The new channel also features “Send to TV”, which after pairing, lets you send a YouTube video from your smartphone or tablet for viewing on the Roku.
As a Roku 2 XS owner, I’m delighted but will have to wait a bit longer until I get the YouTube channel on my device (unless Santa has a surprise for me). Sadly, it will be one less reason to turn on my Nintendo Wii, especially with the HD support on the Roku.