iPod music sharing via “Jacking”

I came across an article in Wired discussing the concept of “jacking”, the act of going up to fellow iPod users and offering your headphone jack to take a listen. The basic concept turns your iPod into a DJ of some sorts, and also is an open sharing of your music style, and a bit of your personality as well. It’s a very interesting social concept that in the article, opened one person’s mind to a whole new genre of music as well as created a fellow bond between iPod users in that area.

TiVo unveils several new products at CES

Today at CES, TiVo unveiled several new services and products.

First off is the DirecTV HDTiVo. This first High Definition DVR from TiVo features not one, not two, but four tuners and can automatically identify whether an incoming signal is satellite or from off-air, and use the appropriate tuner. TiVo says this will be released Q1 of this year. Other hardware includes DVD/TiVo combo units from Toshiba and Humax, both available in the fall, and Humax stand alone Series 2 units in 80 and 250 hour units in Q2 of this year.

Home Media Option additions
TiVo also announced additions to its Home Media Option service that allow new photo and music options integrated into the TiVo experience. Two photo additions and two music additions encompass the new additions to HMO. On the audio side, TiVo will now be able to access XM PC Radio devices over the home network, scroll through all of the XM Stations and the digital quality using the TiVo menus and the TiVo remote. There is also support with Moodlogic that automatically categorizes and manages music based on Genre, Artist, Tempo, Year, and Mood using it’s internet based service. You can access your MoodLogic properties, as well as create playlists from within TiVo. On the photo side, album publishing capabilities from Adobe and Picasa help make it easier to manage and publish photo albums for viewing on your TiVo either as a slideshow or a one-by-one presentation.

The most exciting thing for me was the announcement of TiVoToGo, a new service release (now is this an included update or an add on like HMO, that’s the question) for subscribers with Home Media Option can move programs from a TiVo DVR to any PC for viewing as well as burned to a DVD. TiVoToGo utilizes Sonic Solution MyDVD and CinePlayer to playback and record TiVo programs, as well as requiring a TiVo Content Security Key. The key is used on the PC to unlock the files for playback or burning, preventing files from being shared online (for now 😉 ), outside of the user’s home network. TiVo is planning extra services and capabilities developed by themselves and third parties to extend or work with TiVoToGo, including such products like those from BravoBrava! that allow TiVo owners with HMO to program their TiVos remotely from a PDA or cell phone. TiVo says the key and software bundle will be sold at TiVo’s website, www.tivo.com, and is expected to be available in fall 2004.

All in all a very large announcement from TiVo, and it makes me want to plunk down the extra $99 now for HMO, so I can be first in line for TiVoToGo!

Press Releases:
TiVo CES Product Press Release
TiVo Home Media Option additions
TiVo TiVoToGo Product Announcement

Apple releases new iPod Mini

Apple today announced at Macworld Expo the release of the Apple iPod Mini, a smaller and lighter little brother to the iPod. With the smaller size also comes smaller storage, as the Mini comes with 4 gigabytes of storage in 5 different colors. It’s nice, but at $249 the size needs to be a deciding point, both physical and data storage, for someone to choose it over the iPod 15GB for $299.

TiVo sues EchoStar over DVR Patent

Over on TiVo News there are two articles announcing that TiVo is filing suit against EchoStar, owners of the Dish network and the Dish PVR, for Patent Infringement. You can find the CNet article here.

This could be huge for competitors of TiVo planning to release their products in the near future, including Comcast. Stay tuned, this could be huge.

New update for the new year

Hi everyone, and happy new year! I just got back from some much needed vacation time spent around the house and out in Pittsburgh visiting Laura, and other holiday mayhem. I plan on keeping more timely with my posts as my new year’s resolution, so expect to see more posts more often.

I’m now also a member of the TiVolution!, receiving an 80 hour Series 2 TiVo for Christmas, and it has already been worth it and then some. I came back from Pittsburgh last night and I caught up on a bunch of shows that TiVo recorded via Season Pass and otherwise from the last week. What normally would have been impossible was, and saved me lots of time compared to VCR tape. What can I say, I’m hooked!

I also am now the owner of an Apple product, receiving an Apple iPod 40GB for Christmas as well. I haven’t had as much face time with my iPod since I was visiting Laura and such : ) , plus the fact that I can’t find a store that has the iTrip, so I plan on ordering that today for my trip to Pittsburgh this weekend. So far at work it’s been working very well while I work on projects.

I exchanged gifts with Laura after Christmas, which I gave her a Nikon Coolpix 2100 and a SanDisk 256MB CompactFlash card, which she loved : ), and i received a nice Pittsburgh team Polo and a pullover for golfing, she’s fantastic : ).

Anyways I think that catches us up for now, I hope everyone had a great holiday and a happy new year!