Cordcutter Chronicles: News and Trends (Week of October 10th)

October 17, 2016

The Cordcutter Chronicles: Your weekly dose of what’s happening in cord cutting.

  • Apple TV continues to evolve with new apps for cordcutters.
  • 4K smart TVs are getting bigger, cheaper & ultra high definition content availability is on the rise.
  • Classic cinema service aimed at cordcutters prepares to launch with free trial.
  • Social media giant Facebook encourages sharing of its video content via casting.

More Apps For Apple TV

With the discontinuation of the Apple TV 3rd generation media box there was concern that the Apple TV device would eventually be completely phased out. However with new app development for the 4th gen box continuing, and a new focus by the industry on 4K content, this doesn’t appear to be something that cordcutters should worry about any time soon.

Updates and new apps available on Apple TV as of last week include:

BET Networks – also launched apps for Roku and Chromecast.

CNN – a relaunch of the app with improved content.

FloSports – subscription app geared towards sports fans.

NHL.TV – stream all the NHL games live or on demand.

NHL.TV™ enters its first full season, as powered by BAMTech, and gives subscribers access to watch every out-of-market game live and on demand^ in HD on more platforms than ever before – including the introduction of its new tvOS app for Apple TV.

ARENA – to supplement the NHL.TV app. “…Giving NHL fans at the 12 participating arenas the ability to check out a calendar of local events, as well as letting them buy their tickets…” and much more!

Channels 2.0 – allows HDHomeRun device owners to gain an onscreen channel guide to program recordings for their over-the-air TV broadcasts.

Hitachi Roku 4K UHD TVs Are Coming

This holiday season cordcutters will be putting the new 4K UHD (Ultra High Definition) Hitachi smart TVs at the top of their wishlist.

While other brands of Roku HDTVs and 4K TVs are available from Insignia (Best Buy’s brand) and TCL, Hitachi’s focus on bigger 4K displays with plenty of inputs for other devices, may have put them ahead of the pack.

Hitachi’s 4K UHD Roku TVs include models with 50″, 55″ or 65″ (measured diagonally) screen sizes.  The 4K displays have beautifully bright, dynamic backlit LCD LED screens, and the 4K TVs provide cordcutters with integrated access to streaming media apps.

Some of the apps on the Hitachi 4K models include Amazon Video, Netflix, Hulu, Crackle, HBO Now and Sling TV. You can access your favorite streaming services without the need to buy or setup a separate Roku device.

In addition these TVs come with both wired and wireless internet connectivity and (4) HDMI ports to add additional external devices like Blu-ray players and gaming systems.

Apps will be installed and visible after setup, and if you want more you can easily go to the Roku Channel Store via the TV’s simple interface.

It should be noted that some apps provide free content, and others may require you to subscribe to view content. If you already subscribe to a service like Amazon Prime, you can just enter your username and password.

If you would like to see Hitachi’s 4K UHD TV product specifications, click here.

Hitachi Roku TV 4K cordcutters

All Roku TVs from any manufacturer can be connected to an over air TV antenna like the Mohu ReLeaf to obtain all the free TV broadcasts in your area too, making them a simple solution for new cordcutters or those who have yet to try streaming services.

To learn where you can obtain 4K streaming content to make the most of your new 4K UHD TV, check out this Consumer Reports article Streaming Services Where You Can Watch 4K Video by James A. Willcox.

For Cordcutters Craving Classics

FilmStruck is a streaming media service for lovers of classic cinema and contemporary indie films. Shown commercial free with exclusive extras, FilmStruck’s service will be available on the web with apps for Amazon Fire, iOS and Android at launch.  Apps for other streaming media devices will not be immediately available however.

…There will be hundreds of critically acclaimed films, hard-to-find gems and cult favorites from the world’s greatest film libraries…

The official launch date for FilmStruck streaming movie service is October 19th.  Developed by Time Warner’s Turner Classic Movies (TCM) in conjunction with the Criterion Collection,  FilmStruck is encouraging potential subscribers to sign-up on their website right now to be notified when the service goes live.

There will be the opportunity to enjoy a FREE 2 week trial of the service with monthly subscription plans start at $6.99 a month.  There will be the option to pay up to a year in advance and add-on the Criterion Collection, previously on Hulu.

For more information about FilmStruck service, check out their FAQs and answers.

Facebook Casts Its Support To Share

Have you ever wanted to share a cool video you just watched on Facebook on your big TV with friends and family?  Well, now you can!

Facebook has just made it even more fun to be social by allowing users of Apple TV and Chromecast the ability to cast their screens to larger displays.

Interactive Facebook Live video content (the kind where you can comment with emojis…) and other video content found on Facebook can all be cast to shared screens, at the same time the user can continue to use Facebook normally.

Now, when a video is selected in the app’s news feed or from the Saved tab, a small button appears in the top right corner which, when tapped, offers to send the video to an Apple TV on the same wireless network.

The post Cordcutter Chronicles: News and Trends (Week of October 10th) appeared first on Mohu.

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