Game of Thrones Stories April 7, 2015

HBO’s new standalone streaming service called HBO NOW has officially launched on Apple TV, iPhone, and iPad. HBO NOW allows subscribers to watch the premium network’s movies and TV shows online. The service is similar to Netflix as it’s delivered over a high-speed Internet connection rather than cable or satellite and doesn’t require long-term committments through contracts. Here’s how to get HBO NOW works: expand full story

Game of Thrones Stories April 2, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: 11″ MacBook Air (early 2014) $650 w/ .edu, 50% off iOS & Mac Photo Editing Apps, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

Apple MacBook Air 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/128GB + Office 365 for $650 w/edu (orig. $899+)

Game of Thrones: A Telltale Games Series is IGN’s free iOS game of the month ($5 value)

This no fuss cover makes it stupid easy to add USB power to any outlet

Pixelmator – the best photo editor for Mac – cuts its price in half to $15 (Reg. $30)

Small States Review: TM1985’s Weekend Duffel is the perfect companion for any excursion, $371 giveaway

More new gear from today:

HP X702 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive $31 shipped (Reg. $45+)

Seagate Central 3TB Personal Cloud Storage External Hard Drive $80 shipped (orig. $180)

More deals still alive:

Buy Apple TV for $69 and get a free $10 Target gift card, more savings for REDcard holders

Outsource your house chores to Amazon and get a free $20 gift card

New products & more:

Onkyo’s new portable headphone digital-to-analog converter uses a Lightning cable to boost your iPhone’s sound

At the Spring Forward event, Apple and HBO announced HBO Now, an over-the-top unbundled streaming service for HBO shows, like Game of Thrones, independent of a cable subscription. They claimed that HBO Now would be ‘exclusive to Apple TV and iOS devices for three months’. This seemed like a great promotion for Apple’s television offerings, coinciding with a price cut of the Apple TV box to $69.

However, Sling TV has now announced that it will be offering the same deal through its service: HBO shows for $15 a month. This throws shade at Apple’s announcement — signing up for Sling TV will make HBO available on devices like the Roku this month. It is worth noting that the Sling deal also requires a subscription to Sling itself, HBO is only available as an add-on, which is an additional $20 a month.

Sling has found a ‘loophole’ in Apple’s deal so that it can offer cable-independent HBO content this month as well, sidelining Apple’s three month exclusivity window …

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The best 4K & 5K displays for Mac

Game of Thrones Stories July 17, 2014

HBO’s Game of Thrones Ascent game arrives on iPhone

Following a release for iPad back in March, HBO’s Game of Thrones Ascent game developed by Disruptor Beam & Kongregate is now available for iPhone. The game already racked up around 2,500,000 players on Facebook and the web before making its way to iPad in March, and it comes to the App Store with new art, optimized imagery for Retina displays, and Game Center leaderboards.

With Game of Thrones Ascent, fans can immerse themselves beyond the books and show, living the life of a noble in Westeros, working with (or against) each other in a persistent, authentic game world. Taking part in thousands of story-driven quests, players delve deeply into the lore and develop their own lands and reputation among the Great Houses. Players explore an expansive world filled with deep political and social play involving diplomatic agreements, pacts, marriages, and betrothals. Through Alliance challenges, players work with hundreds of others to accomplish great tasks and rise to the top of the Power Rankings.

The developers update the game weekly and alongside new episodes of the TV show when it’s airing. That includes new quests, in-game items and more that follow the storyline of the show.

Game of Thrones Ascent is available for iPhone now as a free download on the App Store.

Game of Thrones Stories April 8, 2013

HBO Go iOS app updated with AirPlay multitasking & new interactive features for Game of Thrones

HBO has pushed out an update to its HBO Go app in at least the US today. Version 2.1 brings AirPlay multitasking support, allowing videos from the HBO Go app to continue playing while users navigate to other apps. Also included in this release is enhancements to the interactive features experience for the network’s popular Game of Thrones series and the usual performance enhancements:

– Includes AirPlay multitasking capability — other apps can be used while video continues to stream via AirPlay. – Enhancements to the interactive features experience for Game of Thrones – General performance enhancements

HBO Go version 2.1 for iPhone and iPad is available from the App Store now.

Game of Thrones Stories March 22, 2013

Reuters reported that HBO might consider a reversal of its previous position of not allowing access to HBO Go without a cable subscription.

HBO-GO

HBO Go launched 3 years ago to allow subscribers to watch shows on tablets, but the service is so far restricted to those who have a cable TV subscription with an HBO partner and pay a top-up HBO fee. Co-President Eric Kessler had previously, and rather naively, said in a video interview at VideoNuze that those abandoning cable TV for purely online viewing was “minimal” and a temporary response to the economy, and he said there was no reason to offer a standalone mobile service.

This position now appears to be softening, with CEO Richard Plepler recognizing that a growing number of consumers want to choose both content and viewing platform at will.

“Right now we have the right model,” Plepler told Reuters on Wednesday evening at the Season 3 premiere of HBO’s hit TV show “Game of Thrones.” “Maybe HBO GO, with our broadband partners, could evolve.”

Companies like HBO are faced with a difficult tightrope act. While they earn billions of dollars from their existing sales model, any new offering that risks cannibalizing revenue is a frightening prospect for the company. Equally, however, it’s clear that ‘cable-cutting’ —giving up cable TV subscriptions in favor of online viewing— will only increase. Failing to respond to this is not an option.

One number will be looming very large in front of HBO: 25 million. That’s the number of illegal downloads of its hit show “Game of Thrones”. While some substantial proportion of those people would download pirated content for free no matter what options were available, there is a growing phenomenon of illegal downloads by those who would be willing to pay for content simply because existing deals don’t allow them the freedom to simply pay for the content they want on the device they want.

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