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Video Streaming – Is it For Me?

With the right high speed internet service, so many options open up regarding media streaming. Some of the availability includes online radio, internet TV, replay media, cinema downloads and video-sharing services. Music, movies, sports and television shows from all over the world are available through various free and paid services. Music downloads have revolutionized the way the music industry markets to various target groups.

According to Digital Media Wire (January 29, 2009), Netflix, which offers digital distribution of movies as well as blue-ray disc rental, reports that media streaming online is growing at a faster rate than Blu-ray disc technology. A 30% increase in movie-streaming subscribers occurred in one quarter. That’s an astounding jump in new subscriptions. The downside to movie streaming with a provider like Netflix is that generally the best movies are released on DVDs first in order to generate more profits. Many of the “watch immediately” movies were “B” and below movies. Because of this it seems that Netflix’s mail-delivery rental service won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. However, media streaming appears to be moving forward as the technology to watch for the future, and plans are moving forward to make higher quality movies available to the consumer.

Streaming eliminates download wait times – instead, the stream is continuous and plays as soon as it arrives. To avoid the files from taking up tremendous amounts of bandwidth, they usually arrive compressed. Depending on which media player you use and what rate the file is compressed at, the stream time may vary a bit.

A stream is considered either “live” or “on-demand.” A live stream is generated through what is called true streaming, which means information is sent straight from the source to the target without being saved to a hard disk. The stream is then played on either a computer or other device capable of playing the stream. It generally is only available one time (such as during a sporting event or a concert). On demand streaming, which is what services like Netflix uses, is done by progressive streaming. Files are saved to a hard disk and then played from that location. On demand streams are available for an extended period of time.

If streaming technology interests you, two things must be in place – your CPU power and adequate bandwidth capabilities. Both hardware and software for media streaming are evolving at a rapid pace; there are a lot of choices available in terms of configuring adequate CPU power. While shopping for internet providers you will notice that various speeds are available which enable video streaming through their service. Some things that will need to be considered when shopping for bandwidth are: will streaming be live or on-demand? Will you require audio, video, or both? How often do you plan on streaming, and for how long?

Streaming is here to stay, and the technology will continue to improve as the demand continues to grow. Internet service providers continue to evolve as well with technologies and speeds that will keep up with the rapidly changing times.

Watch Movies on Your Xbox 360!

Did you know that you can watch movies on Xbox 360 instantly? A short while ago, Netflix and Microsoft teamed up to bring you this amazing service, and now it is available to everyone who owns an Xbox and has a Netflix subscription.
 
Basically, anyone with a subscription and an active Xbox Live account can log on to their Netflix account and watch any movie that has been placed in the “instant queue”. Movies must be added manually using your computer, and cannot be added through the Xbox itself. Also, not all movies are available for instant streaming. There are literally thousands of movies that can be streamed instantly, but I suspect that it will be a while before each and every Netflix movie will be available as an Xbox 360 movie.

 
The whole process is pretty nifty. You can go to your computer, add a movie or two, and go over to your Xbox. By the time you get there, the movie will be automatically placed in your instant Q over Xbox Live. From there, you can simply select the movie, and it will begin to load. It usually takes about 10-30 seconds to load a movie in the beginning, as it has to determine your video quality. If you have a very good internet signal, you will get a better video quality and faster loading times. If you have a slow internet signal, then you will automatically get a lower quality version of whatever movie you are watching. This just makes it so that the movie(s) can load quicker and to minimize waiting time.

Streaming Media Players – Top 3 Been Purchased Online

Streamers (the tiny popular black boxes) are the new rage and are becoming more and more available, with a huge choice the price is also dropping dramatically with competition, which is fantastic news for consumers. Everyone wants the best and highest quality but would also like the most valuable and smallest price, and gladly, this is very possible. Here, are the top three Streamer Media Players been purchased today!

No 3 Sony BDP-S570 3D Blu-ray Disc Player

The BDP-S570 is the new and improved model of the Sony BDP-S300 Blu Ray Disk player wi. The fast load system is excellent and much faster than the older 300s models. The set up is equally as simple and straight forward, and access to Netflix, Amazon Video on Demand, You Tube, etc. is at the click of a button.

The picture and sound is fantastic, and there are no lag times in watching anything, and the increased speed in the network allows true High Definition playbacks. Though this is a very popular streamer been purchased at the moment, at $150 I still believe there are better quality streamers available at a cheaper price.

No 2 Apple TV MC572LL/A

This is the system I personally own (so I will try not to be biased ha!) This is the latest from Apple (2010) and is an amazing compliment to your home theater. It has so many features, yet so simple to use, allowing you to stream whatever is on your iTunes to your TV and home theater system. It has built in support for Netflix, You Tube and a few other internet based media content providers and the picture quality is superb.

The menu is very simple – Movies, TV, Internet, Computer and the settings allows you to change the various Apple TV options. At under $100, the Apple TV is competitively priced with other streaming options.

No 1 Roku XD Streaming Player 1080p

Roku players are quite possibly the most bought streamers been purchased online and are one of Amazons top sellers. This little box allows you to instantly stream tons of entertainment on your TV, watch over 100,000 movies and TV shows from Netflix, Amazon Video On Demand, Hulu Plus and more.

The set up is extremely easy. You can listen to almost any radio station in the country free and watch YouTube clips on your big TV as well as send the sound to your stereo system. The Roku Remote is simple to use and it provides access to NetFlix suggested titles and search.

These are a nifty little box alright and at a price of $79.99 you can see why they are the most popular Streamers been purchased, so cheap and great value.

I hope this article can help you decide on a Streamer Player, but remember to do your research before purchasing, reading reviews may help but for every great review, there is always somebody who has has a bad experience.