Friday, January 6, 2012

Doctor Who to be on Amazon's video-on-demand? (was: Good Morning Silicon Valley: Now watching: Google TV, Netflix and other entertaining news)

• By the way,'s online video-on-demand service LoveFilm has reportedly struck a deal to stream BBC and ITV content, which would give its customers access to new and archived shows including "Doctor Who."

Cool !
I am way too cheap to pay $$$ for cable/satellite just to get BBC America, but a little sad to miss the latest Doctor and maybe Top Gear if can be avoided...
It is the only thing that isn't currently covered well enough by Netflix/Hulu/Amazon for my TV enjoyment.


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: <>
Date: Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 11:46 AM
Subject: Good Morning Silicon Valley: Now watching: Google TV, Netflix and other entertaining news
To: Connie ODell <>

Good Morning Silicon Valley

Now watching: Google TV, Netflix and other entertaining news

By Levi Sumagaysay

It's all so entertaining, this tech news:

• Could this be the year that makes Google TV worth watching? The buildup to next week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is so far dominated by items related to Google's fledgling effort. LG, for example, will reportedly unveil its first Google TV there. LG will join Samsung, Sony and Vizio as makers of televisions featuring Google TV, according to a Google blog post.

Marvell Technology shares are getting a boost from its deal to supply chips for Google TV. Previously, Intel had supplied the chips, but the world's largest chip maker has retreated from TVs, according to Bloomberg. Shares of Santa Clara-based Marvell are up nearly 2.5 percent to about $15.60 as of this post.

New hardware partners are fine and dandy, but if Google doesn't announce any content deals at CES next week, this year could be nothing but a repeat of last year. In 2011, Google TV failed to catch on because it did not seem to add much value to TV viewing. The reason: lack of online content, a problem since the platform's inception. (See Google TV needs more time in the oven, but can content be baked in?) Logitech, a manufacturing partner, said in November that it would stop making Revue set-top boxes, and its CEO called Google TV "a mistake of implementation of a gigantic nature," according to the Los Angeles Times.

Another reason to watch how Google TV fares: It could soon be competing with Apple's iTV, which is rumored to be coming out this year. (See Apple bites: iTV coming next year?)

Netflix shares are again up sharply today despite recent developments that could spell trouble for the Los Gatos company.

First, Peter Kafka at AllThingsD reports that Netflix and others will have to wait longer for access to DVDs from Warner Bros. Kafka's sources say the studio will double the time Netflix, Redbox and Blockbuster have to wait for new releases from 28 days to 56 days. In October, Warner Bros., which is among the companies pushing the new physical disc/online access UltraViolet platform, hinted this move would be coming. (See Online content fights: Warner vs. Blockbuster…) Kafka says the announcement could come during CES next week.

Also, HBO reportedly has decided to stop selling discounted DVDs directly to Netflix. Although Netflix says it will still provide its customers with discs of HBO programs, it's just another sign that content providers increasingly want to control distribution — and something that can continue to drive up Netflix's costs. In HBO's case, it wants to give priority to its own new streaming service, HBO GO.

Speaking of controlling distribution, a deal struck by Comcast and Disney yesterday is another example. Under the 10-year deal, Comcast subscribers will "in the coming months" gain access to Disney content on computers as well as mobile devices. Among other things, according to Bloomberg, it will give Comcast subscribers access to ESPN even when they're not sitting in their living rooms.

Still, other news from Netflix this week offer reason for optimism: It said subscribers streamed about 2 billion hours of content in the past quarter, and its first original series will make its debut next month.

Netflix shares, which are up more than 8 percent to $85.90 as of this post, have risen nearly 24 percent so far this year.

• By the way,'s online video-on-demand service LoveFilm has reportedly struck a deal to stream BBC and ITV content, which would give its customers access to new and archived shows including "Doctor Who."

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"Despite one of the biggest scandals in history, the Japanese institutional shareholders have not spoken one single word of criticism, in complete and utter contrast with overseas shareholders, who were demanding accountability."

Michael Woodford, the British former CEO of Olympus who blew the whistle on improper accounting at the nearly 100-year-old Japanese company and was fired. After an investigation confirmed that Olympus had for decades covered up about $1.5 billion in investment losses, Woodford had campaigned to get his job back. But now he says he will give up, "get on a plane" and sue the company for wrongful dismissal instead. He criticized Japanese companies' "incestuous club," saying, according to the Associated Press, that "cross shareholding keeps everything comfortable, cozy, nice — no confrontation, no challenge, no takeover." The Olympus saga has raised questions about corporate governance in Japan. (See Quoted: zooming in on Japan amid Olympus scandal.) Olympus stock has lost half its market value since Woodford's firing in October, the New York Times says.

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(In)security: Facebook logins and Symantec source codes stolen: Facebook is saying that more than half of the 45,000 Facebook logins and passwords — a majority of which were from accounts in France and the U.K. — hijacked by malware were invalid and out of date, according to ZDNet.

A Seculert blog post yesterday warned that the well-known Ramnit worm's latest incarnation had stolen the credentials of Facebook users, and was perhaps transmitting the malware to other users who click on their friends' links. A security expert quoted by the BBC recommended that Facebook users install anti-virus software.

Ramnit was first discovered in 2010 as a worm that infected Windows executable files, Microsoft office files and HTML files. It evolved to pilfer banking data, and now seems to have jumped onto the social-networking bandwagon.

• Speaking of antivirus programs: Symantec has confirmed, according to several reports, that the source code for a couple of its products have been stolen. Although the Mountain View company told SecurityWeek that the hackers had actually made off with source code for its enterprise products and not the popular Norton AntiVirus software used by consumers, it's still a bit of an embarrassing headache for the security-software maker. According to SecurityWeek, Symantec also said the stolen source code was for Symantec Antivirus 10.2, which has been discontinued, and for Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0, which is 4 years old.

On Wednesday, hacker group Lords of Dharmaraja, which claims to have accessed the Symantec source code from Indian government servers, reportedly posted what it said was the complete source code for Norton AntiVirus, but that post has since been taken down.

Symantec shares are down slightly, less than 0.5 percent, as of this post.

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Off topic: Collecting bones, profiting from driveways, legislating patriotism, remaking art, avoiding gestures: The blog of a 10-year-old bone collector from Scotland. (via Marginal Revolution) If you live in the U.K. or the U.S. and want to charge people to park on your driveway, there's a site for that. If you live in Indiana, you could be fined for not singing the national anthem the "right" way if a proposed bill passes. A bunch of Frida Kahlo wannabes, and other photo remakes of famous art. (via And American hand gestures to avoid using abroad. (infographic, via @GuyKawasaki)

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