Sling TV, a new hardware-free, online-only television service from the people behind Dish Network, is the most exciting thing to happen to IPTV in years. It's a $20-per-month alternative to cable and satellite that you access via the web, or more probably, apps on your mobile device or set-top I box.
Dedicated technology newshounds have already heard that all of Sony's upcoming BRAVIA televisions will feature Android TV powering their integrated electronics. At CES, the biggest show around in terms of home theater (among other things), they've made good on that promise. Don't believe me? Watch these attractive people over-emote and demonstrate a BRAVIA television's Google Cast feature and ability to play games from the Play Store.
Android TV runs these TVs, including the various inputs and live television, in a manner similar to some Roku-branded HDTVs already on the market.
Today Microsoft has announced its Wireless Display Adapter, a Chromecast-sized dongle that plugs into the back of your TV, monitor, or projector and enables you to mirror content from any Miracast-enabled device. It's not the first product of its kind on the market, but Microsoft's offering is a small and sleek option, and it just so happens to be compatible with Android devices.
NBC Universal has launched Sprout Now into the Play Store, giving parents all over the country the option to let their kids stream a full episode of their favorite series and get a couple moments' rest. The app comes with a full program guide, plenty of shows, and enough content to occupy children for up to four, five minutes tops.
Of course, there are caveats. Parents need to have a TV subscription of some kind in order to get access to the shows.
Let's face it: at this point, Google TV is a certified flop. For all its good points, its adoption was hampered by expensive hardware, limited apps, and a clunky interface. Google is hoping to revive their set-top plans with "Android TV," an as-yet unverified platform revealed by The Verge last month. Others found more details of Android code powering a Google set-top box in the Android 4.4.3 changelog. Now anonymous sources tell GigaOM that the device will get a formal introduction, if not a full rollout, at Google I/O in June.
Hey, you! Insanely rich person with poor impulse control! Don't you wish the irresponsibly gigantic television in your palatial living room had a touchscreen, so you could walk half an acre across your designer carpet to play 2048? Well now you can, as long as you're willing to throw a few monetary scraps to Viewsonic. The CDE8451-TL is an 84" 4K TV with a touchscreen and Android. For $18,999. For some reason.
Remember Zeebox? You know, the NBC and Comcast-backed app that promised to bridge the gap between television and social media? You could be forgiven for forgetting - the app warranted exactly one post from us 18 months ago, and hasn't made any significant changes to get back on our radar. Today the app has been re-branded as "Beamly," a move announced with a swanky app redesign.
All the core functions of Zeebox seem to have made it over to the new Beamly app: the basis of the experience is still the TV schedule, which will learn your tastes and recommend new shows.
So, Aereo's streaming TV service is pretty cool. It re-broadcasts standard over-the-air television signals to your mobile device, assuming you live in one of the coverage areas. If you want to enjoy your incredibly convenient TV Xzibit-style, and put your TV in your TV (set), you'll soon be able to. According to a new press release, the Aereo app will add support for Google Chromecast on May 29th. Hooray!
Of course, that assumes that Aereo's $8-a-month subscription service is still around at that point.
Everyone panic! The HBO app is no longer listed in the Google Play Store! Game of Thrones starts in three weeks, how are we going to - wait, what's that? HBO Go is still there? Oh, it's the other HBO app that's gone. The one that doesn't stream episodes and movies. The one that no one uses. Well that's all right, then.
Yes, HBO fans, you can rest easy: nothing is happening to HBO Go, the cable service's streaming app that's free for subscribers.
Why would you want to watch TV shows on a TV? That’s so 2005. The options for live streaming your favorite TV shows on various devices abound. But until now, the options for live streaming on Android were hard to come by. None of the popular apps (Hulu, Netflix, Crackle, etc.) have this feature. This is why Aereo is different. It has been available for a while on iOS, although curiously not through an app, but via the browser.