When Jurassic Park was originally released back when I was a kid, I thought it was one of the best movies I had ever seen (in fact, it probably was, given my young age!) Seeing dinosaurs look so realistic was something you had to see, and the only way to truly experience the scope of the movie and the details in the CGI was to see it in a movie theater.
Now, here we are some 22 years later, and fourth movie in the series, Jurassic World, is set to be released in a week-and-a-half. Television technology has evolved to the point where the home viewing of today rivals the cinema experience of yesteryear. Last night I took a trip over to Best Buy so that I could check out the exclusive Jurassic World clip being shown on Samsung SUHD Ultra 4K television sets.
Television manufacturers like Samsung, LG, Sony, and Vizio are betting big on 2015 being a breakout year for Ultra HD 4K televisions. If you’re unfamiliar, 4K TVs deliver video content at 2160p. That’s 3840×2160 pixels, which means it’s hitting you with 4x the resolution of the 1080p (1920x1080 pixels) set you’re likely already used to. Streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, and YouTube are already pumping out 4K content, with more to come. It all may sound great, but it’s really something you need to see for yourself to believe—luckily, Best Buy is ready to give you that up-close and personal look.
iOS devices like the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch will be big holiday gifts this year, make no mistake about it. The Apple TV is actually a fantastic complement to Apple's handhelds, worthy of being featured in our 2014 Holiday Gift Guide. A nice little device in its own right, the Apple TV gives you access to Apple's iTunes Store entertainment content right on your television. In addition, you get Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube, sports networks, and plenty of other entertainment options. Connect it to your iTunes Home Share, and you can use your iOS devices as remote controls for the Apple TV. The best part, though, is AirPlay. You can beam audio and video content right to the Apple TV with ease from your iOS device, or your Mac. You can also mirror the display of these devices as well, all wireless over your home network.
Honorable Mention: Roku 3 Streaming Player
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GoPro has announced the new GoPro Hero4 Black Edition camera, which takes its top-of-the-line model and adds in 4K recording at 30 frames per second, what many video enthusiasts consider to be the holy grail for a pocket camcorder. That’s not all, as it can also do 1080p at 120 frames per second (great for slow motions video recording,) and takes 12 megapixel images, up to 30 per second. On the inside you’ll find a processor that is twice a fast as what was in the GoPro Hero3+ Black Edition, as well as a redesigned microphone with double the dynamic range as the previous model. Built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi allow you to use a smartphone or tablet as a live remote viewfinder for the Hero4 Black Edition as well, which is just awesome. You can pick up the GoPro Hero4 Black edition for $500 starting October 5th.
Dell has announced a new 5K display, clocking in at 27-inches with a 5120x2880 resolution. That's a staggering 14.7 million pixels, 70% more pixels than you'd find on a 4K monitor. The Dell UltraSharp 27 Ultra HD 5k display also impresses with 218 pixels per inch (ppi), matching the pixel density found on the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display. A media card reader is also built-in, as are six USB 3.0 ports to up your connectivity game. Now that it's proven that larger format Retina displays are possible, surely Retina iMacs and Thunderbolt 2 displays can't be far behind, right? OS X Yosemite has code references to 5120 x 2880 resolution, so Apple may already be readying its desktop machines for Retina resolutions.
No solid release date for the panel was given, but it should be available for purchase by the end of the year for $2499.99.
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What's exciting about the new TiVo Roamio DVR line is that it's been a while since TiVo last released some new hardware. Three and a half years, in fact. That's when the TiVo Premiere debuted, promising an HD interface and dual-core chip that was supposed to bring about speed and efficiency. Well, the Premiere failed to live up to the hype, and TiVo went back to the drawing board and spent a few years building Roamio.
TiVo Roamio is actually a line of three DVRs that range in price from $199 to $599, with four tuners built-in to the standard Roamio, and six tuners in the Roamio Plus and Pro models. The Plus and Pro also have integrated TiVo Stream functionality, too, allowing you to watch TiVo content on your iOS devices wherever you have Wi-Fi. Has TiVo done enough to earn your attention and hard-earned dollar with the Roamio DVR? Join us for our full TiVo Roamio Pro review as we answer just that.
iOS devices like the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch will be big holiday gifts this year, make no mistake about it. The Apple TV is actually a fantastic complement to Apple's handhelds, worthy of being featured in our 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. A nice little device in its own right, the Apple TV gives you access to Apple's iTunes Store entertainment content right on your television. In addition, you get Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube, sports networks, and plenty of other entertainment options. Connect it to your iTunes Home Share, and you can use your iOS devices as remote controls for the Apple TV. The best part, though, is AirPlay. You can beam audio and video content right to the Apple TV with ease from your iOS device, or your Mac. You can also mirror the display of these devices as well, all wireless over your home network.
Honorable Mention: Roku 2 XS Streaming Player
Read More | Apple TV
TiVo has launched a trio of next-generation Series 5 DVRs in the new TiVo Roamio family. What makes Roamio so much better than Premiere? How about more of everything that people love about TiVo? We're talking more tuners, more space to store your recordings, and even a less expensive service fee. The crowning feature, though, is that the TiVo Roamio boxes have both Wi-Fi and the ability to stream to mobile devices built right in--no need to purchase the TiVo Wi-Fi dongle, or the recently-released TiVo Stream.
It's been almost two years since TiVo released the Premiere Elite line of DVRs, and unlike the previous generation, the improvements in the Roamio line are immediately apparent. TiVo even says that Roamio is, on average, 1.7x faster than the previous TiVos, and that's a welcome change because browsing through the menus was a time-consuming experience at times. We go through all three Roamio DVRs after the break, but if you've been waiting for them and just want to buy now, here are the links:
- TiVo Roamio - $199: 4 tuners, OTA support, up to 75 hours
- TiVo Roamio Plus - $399: 6 tuners, up to 150 hours
- TiVo Roamio Pro - $599: 6 tuners, up to 450 hours
Well, the rumors were correct on the mysterious device that momentarily showed up on Google's support page. The Chromecast is a media dongle that allows you to sling web content the web and cloud-stored content, using a smartphone or Chrome browser as a remote control. It's a bummer that it still doesn't have the ability to stream or mirror content stored on the device like Apple's AirPlay, but hey, for $35, we can't complain.
Read More | Google
Apple has just announced a new software update for the Apple TV that brings HBO Go and WatchESPN to the platform. Additionally, live UK Sky News streaming, access to Crunchyroll (an anime video site) videos, and Qello, a music/documentary streaming service.
“HBO GO and WatchESPN are some of the most popular iOS apps and are sure to be huge hits on Apple TV,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “We continue to offer Apple TV users great new programming options, combined with access to all of the incredible content they can purchase from the iTunes Store.”
In order to activate HBO GO and WatchESPN, you'll need to be subscribed to the right cable provider, and you'll activate them using a code from your provider. Sky News provides free streaming in the US, UK, and Ireland.
You can download Apple TV 5.3 software update now for your second- and third-generation Apple TV to get the new hotness right away.
Read More | Apple