Sport & Auto
- About Future
- Digital Future
- Cookies Policy
- Terms & Conditions
- Investor Relations
- Contact Future
This year's Consumer Electronics Show winds down today in Las Vegas, but there are still plenty of new products and services to talk about, including a few featured in our Wednesday recap. But we have a feeling that 2014 will have plenty more to offer in the days, weeks and months ahead, so stay tuned to this channel and we'll keep dishing out whatever tech companies have to throw at us!
If you happen to be buying fewer Blu-rays or DVDs than you used to, you're not alone. According to BGR (via The Wall Street Journal), sales of digital movies like the ones sold by iTunes, VUDU, CinemaNow and others are up a whopping 47 percent from last year, at the expense of traditional physical media. But it appears to be a good problem to have for Hollywood studios, who have been pushing early releases for digital versions, which have become their "highest profit-margin transaction." In 2013, consumers purchased $1.19 billion in all-digital media, with another $3.16 billion spent on subscription-based streaming and $2.11 billion on video-on-demand rental, but don't cry for Blu-ray and DVD — they still managed to rack up $7.78 billion last year from sales alone.
AT&T announced plans earlier this week to allow companies or developers to pay for mobile data used by their customers in a type of toll-free internet service, but the scheme is already under scrutiny by the Federal Communications Commission. According to The Verge, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler wants to "take a look at what this is, let's take a look at how it operates... and be sure, that if it interferes with the operation of the internet; that if it develops into an anticompetitive practice; that if it does have some kind of preferential treatment given somewhere, then that is cause for us to intervene." It remains to be seen if Sponsored Data will hold up to FCC scrutiny, even before AT&T has a chance to formally offer it.
Could the days of free services be numbered? The folks at file sharing service Droplr seem to think so, having dumped their free product offering this week in favor of new pricing that starts at $4.99 per month ($49.99 annually) for their new "Lite" plan, which allows unlimited files up to 2GB. Pro and Team plans are also available for $9.99 and $9.99 per user per month respectively, which add enhanced security, custom branding and a few other niceties. Unlike Dropbox and other cloud storage services, Droplr doesn't require folders or syncing, so the relatively inexpensive fee might still be worth it for many users.
The gang at Moshi hit the CES 2014 floor running on Wednesday by introducing the VersaKeyboard, a new iPad Air case that offers a detachable Bluetooth keyboard as well as a stand case that folds up origami-style, similar to Amazon's latest Kindle Fire accessories. Priced at an even $100, the VersaKeyboard offers up to 130 hours of battery life and weighs a mere 13.4 ounces, making it a pretty ideal way to extend the usefulness of your iPad Air while protecting it in style. The VersaKeyboard is now in stock from Moshi's online store, so get ready to watch your iPad Air case virtually disappear before your eyes, just like one of those Benjamins will vanish from your wallet to buy one.
With any new major app release, bugs are bound to creep in, which is why that initial "point one" update is so important. The folks at tap tap tap announced Wednesday that Camera+ 5.0.1 for iPhone is indeed one such release, squashing some stability issues that cropped up with the initial pre-Christmas release. Bug fixes include a crash while editing photos in The Lab, Clarity Pro getting "a little too ambitious" with enhancing photos and a crash at launch for many users. All in all, this is an update users will be quite happy to install, so head to the App Store and make the magic happen all over again.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter
(Image courtesy of The Wall Street Journal)