Best Buy Cloud

Best Buy reveals cloudy ambition with Music Cloud

Electronics retailer Best Buy announced the launch of its own cloud-based music service for the U.S. today, dubbed Music Cloud. The new service will let users register and stream their music libraries for on-the-go listening through iOS, Android, and BlackBerry devices.

Does Hulu have a user attention problem?

Hulu has released yet another peek at its monthly performance from comScore’s Video Metrix report. Long story short, the premium video hub is still growing in terms of unique visitors, while the amount of time spent on the site seems to be dropping.

StumbleUpon adds Facebook, comments to its web-based recommendations

StumbleUpon, an application for discovering and rating web content, is fine tuning its web experience. As part of the app’s growth outside of its proprietary toolbar, StumbleUpon is announcing updates to its web-based interface, like Facebook compatibility and new content sharing tools.

Joost: For sale, or just fortifying?

The buzz in the online vid biz is that Joost, a once touted video portal, might be headed for a buyout. After two years of going it alone, the company is rumored to be in talks with Time Warner Cable and satellite providers for a possible deal, reports CNet’s anonymous source.

Netflix nails Q1, expects competition from kiosks

DVD rental company Netflix just blew the lid off its first quarter earnings. The Los Gatos, Calif. company netted $394.1 million in revenue in Q1 2009, representing a 21 percent leap year-over-year and a 10 percent bump compared to last quarter. These figures easily beat street estimates, which had the company pegged around $390 million for quarterly revenue.

YouTube RealTime: Great for socializing and ads?

I have to admit, I was a little skeptical when I heard YouTube was working to bring real-time interactivity to the site. But now that I’ve tinkered with the feature (dubbed “YouTube RealTime”), it’s clear that the popular online video portal was ripe for social chops. After all, half the fun of discovering content on YouTube comes from sharing it with friends.

Government shakedown for music-sharing service LimeWire?

Congress is winding up to give LimeWire hell again. The peer-to-peer file-sharing service apparently still poses a risk to users who store personal information on their computers, according to the House Committee on Government Reform.

YouTube goes real-time with new notification toolbar

It looks like YouTube has been bitten by the real-time bug too. After the recent real-time overhauls of sites like Facebook and FriendFeed, YouTube is now tinkering with a similar notification feature imaginatively called “YouTube RealTime,” reports TechCrunch.

eBay’s Q1 earnings dip despite Skype, Paypal boost

eBay has just released its first quarter financials for 2009, beating analyst estimates. But, like many other tech companies, the online auctioneer wasn’t exactly immune to the lagging economy.

Report: Interest in online video up, channel loyalty down

Maybe Hulu’s expensive Superbowl ad wasn’t such a bad idea. Consumer interest in computer-based television viewing is on the rise, according to a recent study from consulting firm Accenture. Furthermore, as the number of ways to watch TV expands, consumers are caring less about channel loyalty and more about ease of access for their favorite shows.

TiVo’s still watching you, but by region now

It’s no secret TiVo has been watching its subscribers. But now the DVR company has announced it’s giving advertisers up-to-the-minute info on what users are watching (and fast-forwarding through) based on specific geographic regions.

Adobe unleashes web video, widgets onto TVs

Adobe Flash, a platform for integrating animation and video into web pages, is making the jump to a television near you. Adobe’s newest take on Flash is slated to usher in a new era of enhanced living room gadgets — converting web-enabled TVs, Blu-ray players, and set-top boxes into web video-ready, widget-friendly powerhouses.

Rumor: Hulu’s iPhone app looks sharp, due soon

Hulu has done well as a browser-based video destination. So, it’s not surprising to hear (yet again) that the video site is headed to cell phones. An anonymous mobile industry executive says the video service will soon appear on Apple’s iPhone and iPod Touch, according to Business Insider.

Best Buy breaking into movie downloads?

Anyone who has stepped into a Best Buy retail store has seen its rows and rows of DVDs. But as the physical media market starts to wane, Best Buy is setting its sights on a new frontier — digital downloads. Sources close to the studios say the electronics retailer is preparing to launch a movie download service as early as this summer, reports Variety.

MixerCast nabs $4.1 million for widget ads

As the display advertising market tanks, widget-based ad networks like MixerCast still seem to be netting cash. After raising $6 million last year, the San Mateo, Calif. company has announced the close of another $4.1 million round led by Intel Capital.

SoundCloud raises $3.3 million for audiophile file-sharing

SoundCloud, an audio file sharing site for music professionals, has raised €2.5 million ($3.3 million) in its first round of funding. The Berlin-based startup entered the crowded file-sharing market last year with a private beta, but its executives say the service has since grown to 100,000 registered users.

Google defies economy, ekes out decent Q1

Google has announced its first quarter financial earnings, and so far the results look decent — given the economic climate. The search giant reported net revenue of $5.5 billion, or $5.16 per share. In terms of historic earnings, Google’s Q1 performance was actually down 3 percent compared to Q4 2008, and up 6 percent in comparison to Q1 2008.

Google’s Q1 forecast looks cautiously optimistic

The economy has been chewing up tech companies left and right, but tomorrow (Thursday) will reveal the quarterly fate of one of the industry’s biggest — Google. After a Wall Street-beating fourth quarter, the Mountain View, Calif.-based search giant will release its first quarter financial earnings to an undoubtedly anxious market.

MOG relaunches, calling itself the “Huffington Post of music news”

MOG, a social networking and blog site for music lovers, is going through some cosmetic changes. Today’s relaunch is designed to leverage a new organizational structure, homepage widgets, and the site’s own editorial staff to transform MOG into a ‘Huffington Post’-like destination for music news.

Tiseme brings Facebook-style feeds to the rest of the web

Tiseme bills itself as a ‘browser-based conversation platform.’ In practice, what it does is bring all the social parts of Facebook and Twitter — news feeds, comments, status updates and all — to regular old web surfing. After a few weeks of behind-the-scenes tinkering, site founder Brandon Powell tells us that the Indianapolis-based web app is ready for its public alpha, starting today.

Moxi uses online video to sweeten its high-def DVR

Digeo, a manufacturer of cable ready set-top boxes, has announced a slew of updates for its flagship device, the Moxi HD DVR. The free software update bolsters the device’s core functionality with access to a number of top-tier online video hubs and Rhapsody’s streaming music service.

AMC goes niche with B-movie video site

Online video destinations like Hulu and YouTube are always scrambling for the newest premium content. But, cable network AMC is adopting an entirely different approach for its new online video mini-site — namely, old, schlocky, B-level movies.

JiWire raises $11M for WiFi hotspot advertising

JiWire, a WiFi hotspot ad delivery service, has raised $11 million in funding. Chief executive Kevin McKenzie says the recent round will go toward expanding the company’s ongoing sales and marketing efforts, as well as research and development.

Justin.tv integrates with Twitter, Facebook, MySpace

Justin.tv, a live video streaming site, has announced a new feature that integrates its chat interface with Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. Site founder Justin Kan says the integration is aimed at leveraging users’ status updates on social networking sites to encourage a social viewing experience.

Blockbuster’s financial outlook not so good

Blockbuster just might be on the ropes. The Dallas, Tex. movie rental chain said in a recent SEC filing that it may not be able to make good on some of the performance-based stipulations for an outstanding loan. If the rental giant isn’t able to secure the $250 million in loans it needs to survive, then its auditors say there’s “substantial doubt” about whether the flailing company can stay in business.

Turner Broadcasting taps Attributor for video tracking

Turner Broadcasting System, the corporation behind networks like CNN, TBS, and Cartoon Network, has announced a partnership with Attributor, an online content tracking and analytics company. The partnership would allow Turner to track and study how users upload and access (both lawfully and unlawfully) its video content.

Google, T-Mobile bringing Android to home phones too

One reason the tech industry got so excited over Android was its potential to evolve. While the open source software platform debuted on T-Mobile’s G1 mobile phone, the industry often speculates about its use on other devices. Now, a source within T-Mobile says Android is poised to become a home phone as early as 2010.

YouTube, Sony partnering for streaming films?

Short-form video site YouTube and Sony Pictures are rumored to be in negotiations for a new content deal. Sources close to the talks have told CNet the agreement could make full-length films like Sony Pictures’ “Spider-Man” and the 1998 remake “Godzilla” available for free on YouTube.

TrueAnthem adds tracking tools to its free music

TrueAnthem, an ad-supported music download service, is branching out into the world of ad tracking. We’ve always had some reservations about TrueAnthem’s service. The San Francisco-based startup works mostly with small, unsigned artists and has them read spoken ads in front of their songs, which really ruins the listening experience — at least for me. But it’s managed to sign up several big brands, like Nestlé, to its service. Now it’s providing tools to those brand marketers to help them track the performance of their viral campaigns.

Disney CEO: Pulling online video is anti-tech, anti-consumer

Let’s be honest — Disney took its sweet time in partnering with Hulu and YouTube. But, chief executive Robert Iger says upping Disney’s online video reach was always part of the plan. During Iger’s keynote at the Cable Show conference in D.C., the Disney executive argued that the industry’s survival hinges on embracing online video rather than yanking content.