More 3D TVs than ever are going to be flying toward consumers this year, according to analysts at IHS iSuppli.
With lower prices, and with TV makers pushing 3D harder than ever, shipments of 3D sets are likely to jump by 463 percent this year to hit 23.4 million units from just 4.2 million last year, IHS iSuppli said. Eyeing the years ahead, shipments will climb by 132 percent in 2012 to reach 54.2 million. By 2014, consumers will be facing more than 100 million 3D TVs, followed by 159.2 million in 2015.
Last month, an unknown San Francisco publishing start-up had just about the best debut imaginable. Byliner's first product became an instant best-seller and seriously called into question the reputation of an international sensation a decade in the making--all in less than 25,000 words that never touched a printing press.
The tiny operation released Jon Krakauer's "Three Cups of Deceit"--a scathing deconstruction of alleged fraud and mismanagement at the hands of world-famous do-gooder Greg Mortenson of "Three Cups of Tea" fame--as a free PDF in mid-April. The launch got a big boost from a story that aired last month on "60 Minutes" about Mortenson, based largely on Krakauer's research. (Disclosure: "60 Minutes" is broadcast by CBS, publisher of CNET.)
"Reaction has been extraordinary," Byliner.com founder John Tayman told CNET. "In the 72 hours it was available as (a) free download, more than 70,000 readers downloaded a copy. It then moved to the Amazon Kindle Singles store, and it went to No. 1 within six hours."
As of this writing, the 75-page narrative--a riveting account despite being based largely on a review of financial records and interviews with people with ties to Mortenson's nonprofit--remains in that top slot (even as Mortenson's supporters, including one of his former climbing partners quoted by Krakauer, have come to his defense).
Now, Byliner is looking for a repeat performance with its follow-up release in its "Byliner Originals" series--20,000 words from award-winning author William T. Vollmann titled "Into the Forbidden Zone: A Trip Through Hell and High Water in Post-Earthquake Japan." Byliner commissioned Vollmann, who has written about Japan in the past, and paid for his trip to the triple-disaster area to gather stories of survivors, the aftermath, and implications for the future.
"We want to take advantage of the swiftness that digital publishing allows to get these great reads in front of readers," said Tayman, himself a writer and editor who has worked at Business 2.0 and Outside magazine. "Our first two titles are excellent examples of that approach. These are stories that have complexity and currency, tackled by two of the most acclaimed writers in America."… Read more
Baidu, China's top search engine, is nearing the public launch of a legal music-streaming and download service.
Dubbed Ting, the service will allow people to find tracks they may want to hear and to stream them over the Web. Many of the songs will also be available for download at no charge, according to the Ting Web site (Google Translate version) and media reports. Listeners will be able to pause tracks and skip ones they don't like. The service will also include the ability for people to "find like-minded friends," according to the Ting site.
Electronic Arts sees the future of gaming in digital content and wants to lead that market going forward.
"Over the coming years, we will transform EA from a packaged goods company to a fully integrated digital entertainment company. We're transforming EA to a games-as-a-service model." EA CEO John Riccitiello said in an earnings call yesterday, according to a transcript posted on investment news site SeekingAlpha.
It will be an interesting shift for one of the world's biggest game developers. Currently, the company's operation relies heavily upon packaged goods selling at retail outlets like GameStop. However, … Read more
Have you ever walked into a bar, sidled up to a nice lady seated there, and told her how great, how powerful, how ground-breaking you are? No, really. Just once. Yes, that night after you got dumped by Clarissa with the large bank account.
It's very hard to tell someone how great you are. It's even harder when you try to do it in an ad. People wear their cynicism over their T-shirts these days, so I wonder how they might react to Apple's latest ad for the iPad 2.
Users who manage and store their passwords through password management service LastPass are being forced to change their master passwords after the site noticed an issue this week that raised the spectre of a possible security breach.
As described in a blog yesterday, LastPass (download) recently followed a string of breadcrumbs that pointed to an anomaly in its network traffic on Tuesday. Though such anomalies aren't unusual, LastPass found a matching anomaly in one of its databases. Unable to identify a root cause for either anomaly, the company made the decision to assume the worst--that some of its data … Read more
Barnes & Noble spokeswoman Mary Ellen Keating declined to comment beyond the 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which contained one sentence of text to comply with Regulation FD fair disclosure rules, except to confirm the meeting took place in New York City. The filing says simply that the company, in the meeting, "indicated it expects to make an announcement on May 24, 2011, regarding the launch of a new eReader device."
The filing had no specific details about the e-reader, but for some reason the Journal speculated that Barnes & Noble might release a "more powerful combination tablet and e-reader" that would perhaps run Honeycomb, the Android 3.0 OS designed for tablets.
We're here to tell you that's probably not the case and that the more likely--and logical--scenario is… Read more
NEW YORK--Free music is here to stay and punishing Lime Wire founder Mark Gorton for that fact is unjust and won't change a thing, Gorton's lawyers said in court today.
A trial to determine the amount of damages Gorton must pay the top four record companies for infringing their copyrights got under way in a Manhattan federal courtroom. Gorton has a possible $1 billion judgment hanging over his head after the major music labels accused him in a 2006 copyright suit of encouraging music fans to use his company's LimeWire software to illegally swap music files.
Games for mobile devices now account for almost half of all the game downloads, according to an NPD Group report released today.
Even most of the gamers who use a dedicated console to play online are spending the largest chunk of their change on games for mobile devices. The rest of their game funds are going toward titles downloaded for PCs, full consoles, portable consoles, and other systems.
"Mobile gaming represents one of the fastest growing segments of the digital games market, and potential for future growth remains strong as more consumers are using smartphones for games of all types, including the increasingly popular mobile game apps," NPD analyst Anita Frazier said in a statement.
The surge in spending on games for mobile devices is taking a toll on the amount of money spent on physical games, though not dramatically, reported NPD. Among those gamers who bought a mobile game over the past three months, 60 percent said they're spending the same amount of money on console and portable games, but 40 percent said they're spending less on physical games.
Among gamers asked to decide between buying a physical game and a digital game (assuming the price and other factors were the same), 75 percent said… Read more
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment announced today that it has agreed to acquire movie discovery service Flixster for an undisclosed sum.
The studio said that it will allow Flixster to operate independently, but it plans to expand Flixster's services beyond movie discovery to "digital content ownership and delivery across any connected digital device." As part of the deal, Warner Bros. also will get Flixster-owned movie news and reviews site Rotten Tomatoes. That site will operate independently following the acquisition.
Warner Bros. has made a series of moves recently surrounding the distribution of digital content. The company recently announced … Read more