Apple adds FX NOW channel w/ on-demand TV & movies to Apple TV

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Following a report in July that Apple was planning on adding a new FX Now channel to Apple TV within 12 months, today the channel has officially arrived for users in the US. Like the FX Now app that was already available on iOS devices via an app for iPhone and iPad, the channel offers on-demand video streaming with content from the FX, FXX, and FXM networks.  Read more

Cue: The current TV experience “sucks,” billion-dollar Apple TV business will get bigger this year

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Speaking at Code Conference Wednesday night, Apple’s head of online services Eddy Cue took a swipe at the current state of television and presented his take on where the future of that industry lies. According to Cue, Apple TV sales have risen in recent years and over 20 million of the set-top box have been sold to date. Cue says that the device is billion-dollar business now and is expected to continue growing.

However, the Apple TV isn’t a true TV replacement. Cue took a few moments to point out just how much using TV “sucks” and bemoan the current range of DVR devices. He even went so far as to compare current technology with the VCRs of a bygone era—and he’s not wrong. Cue cited drawbacks such as having to remember to set a recording or trying to manage storage on the recorder as reasons on-demand streaming through the Apple TV is growing in popularity.

That’s not to say he’s especially fond of today’s on-demand systems either, though. Not only did Cue have sharp criticisms for modern recording tech, he even jabbed at the streaming experience on the iPad, noting that the process of authenticating with a cable provider to access streaming content is less-than-ideal. So what’s his solution?

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Review: TodoMovies 3 – Manage and discover new movies in a great free app

Taphive GmbH has recently released a major update to their movie management and discovery app, TodoMovies 3. TodoMovies 3 is a to-do app focused on movies. It has a gorgeous layout, and does a superb job managing a movie related to-do list with a robust set of features.

In this article, I will provide some examples of how the app could be used to aggregate a list of movies you want to watch, explore a vast amount of information about those movies, and discover movies you may not know about.

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Hulu announces free viewing coming to mobile this summer

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At Hulu’s Upfront event in New York today, the streaming media company announced some interesting news for cable cutters and entertainment indulgers. Beginning this summer, viewers without paid Hulu Plus accounts will be able to view full episodes of TV shows via the Hulu mobile apps at no cost. The content will still be ad-supported, of course, as even paid members are exposed to advertising, but content will include full TV episodes. Currently, only Hulu members with a paid subscription can access content on mobile devices like the iPhone and iPad and free viewing is restricted to the web. Additionally, Hulu says the company will release “the next generation” of its Hulu Plus app for iPhone around the same time this summer. Read more

Apple updates Trailers app with push notifications, better Rotten Tomatoes integration, and more

Apple has updated its iTunes Movie Trailers app with several new features and upgrades. The biggest new feature is the ability to get push notifications when movies marked as favorites hit theaters or iTunes. The in-app movie reviews have also been tweaked. Where previously you could only see a movies overall Rotten Tomatoes rating, you can now read full reviews right from within the app.

A few smaller features are also included in the update. You can now share links to movie trailers via AirDrop to other iOS devices, and a few bugs have been squashed. You can grab the app for free on the iTunes App Store. The full change log is below:

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Disney leverages iTunes to take on UltraViolet with new ‘Movies Anywhere’ iOS app

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The ties between Apple and Disney are tightening even more thanks to their unprecedented collaboration on the new Movies Anywhere app. This ambitious project has been percolating at Disney for years and aims to make purchasing and viewing digital content easier than ever.

A direct shot at UltraViolet, the Movies Anywhere app allows users to purchase and play movies within the app or through any device with access to your iTunes library. Previously purchased films on DVD, and Blu-ray can be added to the app if they shipped with a digital redemption code. All past iTunes purchases are eligible.

Users can simply connect their iTunes account to their Disney Movies Anywhere account to begin populating their Disney digital movie locker and watch movies online and on their devices. Featuring simultaneous access on multiple devices, Disney Movies Anywhere enables consumers to stream and download Disney movies on their iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch and Apple TV (through iCloud or using AirPlay).

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Review: 60Hz 3.0 for iOS reimagines how you interact with your TV schedule

If you watch a lot of TV, you may be familiar with a problem that plagues many TV lovers: you can never keep track of which shows come on which nights or which episodes you missed last week. Thankfully, there are a whole host of online services that can track this information for you.

I’ve tried a few different apps to keep track of my TV viewing habits, and today one of my favorite apps in this category, 60Hz, has been updated with a brand new design and a bunch of new features and tweaks.

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Apple launches Best of 2013 page on iTunes, highlights top music, apps, books, and more

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Apple has just published its Best of 2013 page, highlighting some of the most popular music, movies, TV shows, iOS apps, ebooks, and podcasts from the past year. In the music section, Lorde’s “Royals” took the pick for Song of the Year, while Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ The Heist was named Best Album.

Gravity, the box office hit starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, was named Movie of the Year. Despite the confusion it caused when its final season was broken into two separate purchases earlier this year, Breaking Bad was Apple’s pick for Show of the Year.

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Hawaiian Airlines to replace entertainment systems with iPad minis

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Hawaiian Airlines, beginning September 1st, will replace its in-flight entertainment systems on some of its routes with iPad minis. This marks the first time that a United States-based airline will offer iPads as in-flight entertainment solutions.

The change will take place on all 767-300 aircraft. Across 14 planes and 14 routes ranging between Hawaii, the continental United States, and countries in Asia, 1500 iPad minis will be deployed:

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TeeVee 2 for iPhone, TV show tracking with a modern look [Review]

In a world where Netflix releases entire seasons of TV shows at a time, like House of Cards and the new season of Arrested Development, personally, I find it increasingly difficult to schedule myself around when HBO wants to air a show or even when it has already aired something.

So when I shared a screenshot on Twitter a few months ago of Episodes, an app that allows you to follow and manage TV shows, a handful of people asked me which app this was I was using. Managing and tracking TV show scheduling is clearly something many people need a solution for.

TeeVee 2 is similar in that it allows you to follow your favorite shows on television without having to manually input any information aside for the name of the series. Read more

Review: Infuse by FireCore is a versatile way to watch videos on your iOS device

As more and more consumers switch to using iOS devices to enjoy media, the need is becoming apparent for a more full featured and well-rounded video player. While Apple’s Videos app provides basic and simple functionality for viewing movies, when it comes to storing, organizing, and viewing your entire library of videos and movies, Apple’s stock app falls flat.

FireCore, the group behind the popular aTV Flash software for jailbroken Apple TVs have released a new app called Infuse, which promises to fix all of that, offering you a versatile way to view and organize videos in a variety of different formats. Let’s check out how it worked.

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Apple adds option to download “Later” for movies and TV shows through iTunes in the Cloud

Download-Later-iTunes-in-the-Cloud-moviesApple has recently added a new option for iTunes purchases on both the Mac and iOS devices running iTunes 11 and iOS 6 or later. Now, when purchasing content that includes a large download, such as movies or seasons of TV shows, iTunes will allow users to complete the purchase and opt to download the file at a later time. As noted by Macworld, Apple outlined the new option, which presents users with a dialog to “Download” now or download “Later”, in a recently updated knowledge base article.

Selecting the new “Later” option will add the purchased content to your “Purchased” tab in iTunes in the Cloud, meaning the feature is only available to those in countries that support iTunes in the Cloud (full list here). According to Apple’s knowledge base article, the option applies to content including: TV seasons, season passes, movie bundles, music box sets, or individual movies and TV episodes.  Read more