Streaming and retail service jumps to a new genre live sports
Is 50 million worth it for Amazon Thursday Night Football package? It is definitely something to take notice of. But it is not exclusive access. Apparently the water got too hot for Twitter, who paid 10 million for the rights last year. The biggest online retailer in the US may be trying to make the kind of move that Fox made when it grabbed the NFC broadcast rights from CBS back in the 1990’s. Let me tell you something, Amazon better not miss the chance to sign Deion Sanders s the perfect spokesmen.
Will it be worth more to Amazon than it was to Twitter?
It better be. Amazon has paid 40 million more than Twitter did. But it could prove to be a much more worthwhile
investment. Why? Because it is a very good marriage of need and capability. There is a market for premium sports streaming options and Twitter was an awkward fit. While it could have been a hugely successful pickup the capability was almost forgotten about by the end of the season. I expected to see trending hashtags like “#TDonTwitter or #CanyoubelievethatBSCALL!. Instead, fans had to learn how to properly search for the game on the short burst style platform. Even more, Twitter had to create TV styled apps for people to watch on connected devices. Amazon, on the other hand, has the platform. All It has to do is add a row of categories to the home screen of its apps or the Fire OS. The addition of NFL football as a Prime benefit vastly expands the appeal of the program. With the NFL Amazon can now offer free shipping (sometimes same day), Free Movies and TV Shows, a music service, sports eBooks and audio books. People already associate Amazon with television and the living room so they should not have a hard time getting their heads around the idea of watching sports through the service.
The Amazon Fire TV is one of the most popular streaming devices on the market. Whether people are buying it to use with Kodi or because they want an easy path to their Amazon content and a hub for Alexa the boxes and sticks especially are always flying off the shelves. The company gave the interface a face lift a few months ago and we decided to put together a video that shows how the new look works on the user side. In general I think the update is a sharp looking change but for those who are used to video guides using the old set up this might be helpful to take a look at.
CES Las Vegas–A new line of TVs powered by the Amazon Fire TV ecosystem and interface made an unexpected debut at CES Unveiled last night. The new Amazon Smart TV interface is strikingly similar to the previously released Amazon Fire setup box in appearance and usability with just one added bonus: all the set-top box features plus antenna capabilities are now located in one Smart TV and interactive smart home hub. Now consumers can watch local channels via an antenna skipping the need for a third-party app, stream online media and tell Alexa to shut off their home lights with just one interface. The new smart TV interface hosted in models from Seiki, Element and Westinghouse 4K Ultra HD display brands TVs and Amazon states will give users an easy to use enjoyable experience.
“Smart TVs can be cumbersome and difficult to use,” said SungChoi, vice president of marketing, Tongfang Global. “Our new line of 4K Ultra HD Smart TVs – Amazon Fire TV Edition represent an
elevated customer experience powered by the highest performance processors in the industry, a unique voice-controlled remote control, and Amazon’s cinematic viewing experience. With Amazon Fire TV built-in and a voice remote with Alexa, access to movies, videos, music, gaming, and more is simple, easy, and intuitive.”
Consumers will have access to over 7,000 apps and games such as Netflix, HBO Now and Spotify. The Amazon signatures of Amazon Video, music and Alexa’s voice command system are also included in the device. An official release date has not been announced yet, but Amazon states the new TVs should be available for sale later this year on Amazon and other authorized retailers. The price will be announced closer to the release date.
How Do you Change the Channels? This just an Amazon Fire TV it is an Amazon Smart TV. That means that users will have to be
able to access their TV channels somehow. The TV’s have a number of options to allow users to navigate. First of all there is a channel guide like something you would find with a digital cable package where the channels and programming are listed. If that isn’t easy enough, users can just ask Alexa to change the channel. They can specifically ask for say, channel 5, or they can say Alexa, change to NBC.
Key Features include:
• Sizes: 43”, 50”, 55” and 65”
• 4K Ultra HD 3,840 by 2,160 panel resolution on all models
• The latest Amazon Fire TV user interface, including easy access to over-the-air TV programming (separate HD antenna required), simple TV input setup, and component switching
• Through the included voice remote with Alexa, customers can search for content and programming, control TV inputs and settings, and access Alexa skills to play music, get the news, check weather, sports scores, and more
•Amazon Voice remote with Alexa enabled control of smart home devices from multiple brands, including Belkin WeMo, Philips Hue, Wink, Insteon, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, TP-Link, Ecobee and more • Access to more than 7,000 channels, games, apps and Alexa skills, including over 300,000 TV episodes and movies from Amazon Video, HBO NOW, Hulu and more
•Like with the Fire TV, Amazon Prime customers get unlimited access to Prime Video, featuring thousands of movies and TV episodes at no additional cost to their membership.
• 3 GB memory and 16 GB internal storage • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet connectivity • Streaming resolution at 4K Ultra HD (2160p), 1080p, 720p up to 60 fps • One-year limited warranty and great customer support
• Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet connectivity • Streaming resolution at 4K Ultra HD (2160p), 1080p, 720p up to 60 fps • One-year limited warranty and great customer support
• Streaming resolution at 4K Ultra HD (2160p), 1080p, 720p up to 60 fps • One-year limited warranty and great customer support
Amazon Channels Integration Prime customers can take advantage of the Amazon Channels features to subscribe to HBO, SHOWTIME, STARZ, PBS KIDS, and over 100 more services and be billed directly through Amazon. They only pay for the channels they want—no cable required, no additional apps to download, and easy online cancellation. Once a customer has signed up for a service the TV will create a programming section that pulls together featured shows and movies from the services users have signed up for.
See a quick video take from The Streaming Advisor, Ryan Downey
Amazon finally has a certifiable hit show to go along with Transparent. The Man In The High Castle which was the runaway hit of Amazon’s Pilot season last year is in the midst of its second season and will continue to show Americans what would have happened had the greatest generation not been up to the task.
The series is available for free to Amazon Prime Subscribers.
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt 1 1/9/17
Sneaky Pete * (AMAZON ORIGINAL) 1 1/13/17
Just Add Magic * (AMAZON ORIGINAL) 2 1/13/17
Red Rock 2 1/17/17
The A-Word 1 1/17/17
America Divided 1 1/26/17
Z: The Beginning of Everything * 1 1/27/17
Mercy Street 2 1/29/17
13 Hours: Secret Soldiers of Benghazi 1/1/17
Across the Universe
American History X
Norm of the North
Are We There Yet
Are We Done Yet
Maid in Manhatten
She’s All that 1/3/17
The Infiltrator 2016 1/9/17
Where to Invade Next 1/22/17
The Choice 1/23/17
Dirty Grandpa 1/27/17
Swiss Army Man 1/30/17
Without providing detailed statistics Amazon announced that the Amazon Channels program, which allows Amazon Prime users to subscribe to partner streaming services and be billed directly through Amazon, has proven to be a very successful for the company and its customers claiming that Amazon Prime members have signed up for millions of subscriptions to partner services like Showtime, STARZ and Acorn. The participating streaming services can be access directly through the Amazon video app multiple devices and allow users to access their entertainment in one place.
Not surprisingly, STARZ, which has proven to have quite an audience in the premium TV space over the past five years, is one of the big winners in this space proving to be the most watch subscription available through Amazon Channels. Another, not exactly bombshell finding, is that HBO is the fastest growing channel amongst nearly 100. HBO, which jumped in with Amazon only a few weeks ago has been pushing HBO Now to pick up on the 20 million households who do not currently subscribe to cable or satellite services. HBO has long been the gold standard for premium TV and the extra boost the service gets from being featured by Amazon is likely educating a number of people who never understood the difference between HBO Now and HBO Go, which is the network’s TV everywhere offering for customers who subscribe through a pay TV service.
Check out the announced findings bellow to learn more.
Most watched subscription – Starz
Fastest growing subscription – HBO
Most streamed Movie – Inside Out (Starz)
Most streamed TV show – Outlander (Starz)
Most streamed comedy – Shameless (Showtime)
Most streamed kids show – Wild Kratts (PBS KIDS)
Most streamed exercise video – Burn to the Beat: Brazilian Booty Burn Workout (BeFit)
Well, Christmas is so close you can smell it or maybe that’s just the cider. I’m sure that a lot of people will have something to watch their favorite TV shows and movies under the tree or in the stocking and there is an important question to ask. Should I Buy The Fire TV Or Fire Stick This Christmas?
Why people like the Fire TV Stick
The Fire TV is inexpensive. At the moment the current generation Fire TV Stick costs $39.99. For that price, users get the item and a voice-enabled remote control. The device gives users the ability to access thousands of apps as well as get quick info via Alexa like the weather, sports scores and even integrate Amazon Echo skills. One of the big draws of the device and one that is not even whispered by Amazon is its ability to run Kodi. Because of its low price and quad-core processor the Fire TV Stick is a favorite for those who want streaming apps and Kodi. But it is a better device than the set-top box? Maybe the biggest perk of the stick is that it can be plugged diectly into the TV without the need to use an HDMI cord. This is because the connector for the device is at the end of the stick itself. This give users one less wire to deal with and also means that the device can be used without being seen or taking up any room on a table or wherever the TV is set up.
What About The Fire TV Box The box is a more expensive option at $89.00. Like the Fire TV stick, of course, the Fire TV box
allows users to access thousands of apps directly from Amazon’s app store. 4k Video
The Fire TV Set-top box can open the world of 4k content. It does not deliver what is referred to as “True 4K” but it is a total step up from mere 1080p. That was a little sarcasm. While 4k, is of course, the nicest picture one is going to be able to render on a TV (assuming you have 4k capable TV) it is not as though 1080p is a low picture quality. At the moment the amount of 4K content is quite small but it is growing and the box will be a bit more future proof than the stick.
Faster Internet performance
IF you do find 4K content to stream you want your data to stream through as fast as possible. Another perk that the box offers that can not be found on the stick is an Ethernet port. If you don’t know what an ethernet port it let me explain. An Ethernet port is a port where users can connect a cable from their modem/router directly to a device. Any modern computer has one because in the end, a physical connection via an Ethernet port gives users a stronger and typically faster internet connection that what can be had from most home Wifi networks. It looks almost like a slightly larger phone jack. Some people can not conveniently connect their device to an Ethernet port but for those who can the extra cash is more than worth it.
Free Time Free Time is a service/app that is available via Fire tablets and the Fire TV set-top box but not via the Fire TV Stick. What Free Time does is all parents to set up a password protectedkid-friendly environment where they can choose the programming and games that are available to their children. The Interface is colorful and bright and they will not have access to anything you do not
want them too. Filters can be set by age etc to help populate the environment with logical choices with an understanding that a 4-year-old and a 7-year-old are going to have different interests.
USB Port The Fire TV has a USB port. How helpful this is to some customers can not be understated. With a USB port users can easily side-load Android apps to the Fire TV. This is for more advanced users who want to expand on their apps past what Amazon offers. And because the Fire OS is built on top of Android this works out quite well. Besides loading the apps the USB port allows users to operated them too. With a USB port, users can easily plug in an airmouse, a USB Keyboard or any number of game controllers. While Amazon offers a controller meant for the Fire TV devices a number of people already have USB powered gamepads capable of handling their needs. But without the USB port they are not afforded an opportunity to use them.
At the end of the day, the Fire TV Stick is a perfectly nice option for streaming. But a number of people don’t really understand the difference between the two devices. The popularity of the Fire TV stick is undeniable but for families who want to have more options, especially the Free Time option it is important to note those differences. Don’t worry, if you want it you can still install Kodi on the Fire TV box. In fact you can do so using the USB port in just a few minutes. I have both a stick and the box and my family prefers the box.
Amazon’s original series “The Man In The High Castle” will goose step back on to the scene this December just in time to remind everyone about what the country could have been if things had gone differently. The Streaming service will also be rolling out a new season of Mozart in the Jungle and lighter fare that will take us on a journey down the yellow brick road as Amazon’s Lost in Oz continues to expand on the contemporary popularity of the Wizard of Oz fanned by numerous TV shows like Once Upon A Time, Broadway Show Wicked and many other projects.
See the full list of what’s new this month bellow.
Lost in Oz*(Amazon Original)
Mozart in the Jungle*(Amazon Original)
Man in the High Castle*(Amazon Original)
Choices of the Heart
Color Me Perfect
Custer’s Last Stand
The Day of the Wolves
Down to the Sea
Elizabeth: The Golden Age
Getting Up and Going Home
Half Shot at Sunrise
Hearts of Humanity
If You Believe
In Old Santa Fe
The Irish Gringo
Journey to Freedom
King of the Sierras
Lars and the Real Girl
Law of the 45’s
Law of the Jungle
Lost in the Stratosphere
Love is Strange
Man with Two Lives
Color Me Perfect
Navigating the Heart
Peck’s Bad Boy
Range of Motion
Simba: King of the Beasts
Six Shootin’ Sheriff
Take My Advice
The Care and Handling of Roses
They Call It Murder
When a Man’s a Man
Therapy for a Vampire
Daddy’s Home (2015)
Cafe Society*(Amazon Original)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
Gangs of New York (2003)
The Innocents (2016)
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
Key: * = Prime Video is exclusive streaming home
New in December – Available for Streaming on Amazon Video
The Secret Agent*
Britains Bloodiest Crown*
Close to the Enemy*
Jericho of Scotland Yard*
Key: italic = show available day after it airs on broadcast; * = new series for Amazon streaming
Amazon has added HBO and Cinemax to its group of partner channels referred to as Amazon Channels. The major premium networks will cost the same as the standalone apps HBO andCinimax Go, $14.99 and $9.99 respectively. The addition of HBO and Cinemax may appear to be
redundant considering that HBO Now is already available on streaming boxes like the Fire TV, Roku or Apple TV, but the innovative thing is that it allows users to combine put more bills in one place. Instead of having to add and or drop the service via the interface that they origionally signed up on as they do with “HBO Now” etc all of it will be in one place. It sort of replaces cable companies as the organizer or the services. It also means that HBO will be available to more customers who have the Amazon app on their smartTV’s. There are 650 compatible devices on the market at this point and would only be logical to expect that number to grow.
The truth is that while HBO Now has been met with a lot of enthusiasm it has not approached near the level of subscribers that Amazon Prime and Netflix enjoy, This exposes the idea of signing up for HBO outside of the standard pay TV ecosystem to millions of potential new customers.
Subscribers will have access to:
All episodes of the newest and most popular HBO series such as Westworld, Divorce, Insecure, Ballers, and Game of Thrones
Blockbuster and award-winning movies like Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, The Revenant, Deadpool, Joy, The Martian, Ride Along 2, Sisters, Straight Outta Compton and more
Topical, news-focused content from John Oliver, Bill Maher and VICE
All seasons of favorites like The Sopranos, Sex and the City, True Blood, The Wire and Deadwood
Epic limited series, including The Night Of, The Pacific,and The Jinx
Acclaimed documentaries including Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, 3 ½ Minutes, Ten Bullets, Everything is Copy, Jim: The James Foley Story, Three Days of Terror: The Charlie Hebdo Attacks, The Ties that Bind
Hilarious original comedy specials from Louis C.K., Amy Schumer, Billy Crystal, Sarah Silverman, Ricky Gervais and the late Robin Williams
If you have been trying and failing to mirror your Windows laptop on a Fire TV box or stick and failed its not your fault. The Amazon Fire Stick Does Not Support Windows Mirroring. Amazon’s Fire TV products in general no longer support Windows mirroring using Miracast. Fire TV devices previously did support the functionality and, in fact, we have videos demonstrating this. Unfortunately when Windows updated from Windows 8 to Windows 10 problems began to occur. It became an issue on forums and discussion groups not only concerning Amazon products but the majority of Miracast enabled devices. Essentially Microsoft broke the functionality. Amazon has apparently decided not to tape it back together.
The Streaming Advisor aims to teach and inform others about how to enjoy video content broadcast via the Internet through incisive stories and reviews that explore the new media marketplace and examine online media trends and how they effect consumers.
Online media includes familiar services like Netflix, Hulu, Crackle and other widely known sources along with small start up sites and companies like PlayOn. We keep tabs on Roku, Apple TV, Google TV and Android streaming so that all you have to do is keep tabs with us.