Streaming TV

Review: Netflix (UK)

Netflix on PC

Netflix in the US is a massive force. Kind of like Lovefilm, it has a TV and film DVD rental service as well as an online streaming service, but it makes so much money, it can now afford to make its own programmes, including a remake of House of Cards with Kevin Spacey.

Now it’s come to the UK. Available on your laptop, your Apple TV, your iPad, your iPhone, your PlayStation, your Wii and probably your cooker as well, Netflix is simple to use, integrates well with social networks, and delivers a true multi-platform experience, all for £5.99 a month.

It’s just a shame there’s bugger all to watch on it.

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Technology reviews

Question of the week: do you want a Kindle and what should I read on my holiday?


So lovely wife bought me a Kindle for Christmas. Ain’t she lovely? Now we could argue a lot about the merits of Amazon’s eBook reader: a lot of people are dubious about them at first, but I love mine and once I’ve shown them how it works, what it’s like to read with, the free/cheap books you can get for it, etc, they generally end up wanting/buying one.

So part one of this week’s question is:

Do you want/have a Kindle? If not, why not?

However, an often overlooked advantage of the Kindle is that when it comes to going on holiday, it’s a revolution. We normally take about an entire suitcase full of books with us, most of which we end up leaving behind at a book exchange. We end up having to weigh all our suitcases very carefully before we go to make sure the books are all evenly distributed so we don’t go over our weight allowance.

Take a couple of Kindles and their battery chargers, though, and you’re pretty much sorted, since it weighs about a quarter of a kilo (half a pound) and can fit 3,000+ books in its memory. Woo hoo!

However, you do need ebooks for it and while I’ve got a lovely supply of free eBooks, I would like some more things to read when I’m on holiday next week. So part 2 of this week’s question is:

Are there any books you’d recommend for holiday reading, preferably available on the Kindle?

As always, leave a comment with your answer or a link to your answer on your own blog

DVD and Blu-Ray reviews

Review: Philips BDP3000 Blu-Ray player

Philips BDP3000

This isn’t so much a review as an “artist’s impression” first look at the Philips BDP3000 Blu-Ray player. Because let’s face it, if it

  1. Plays Blu-Ray discs
  2. Plays all your old DVDs as well

That’s pretty much all you need from it, so I don’t really need to go into the fine details too much. And there’s a decent review on TechRadar anyway, if you need some tech specs, et al.

But I will point out a few caveats with this new high tech world we live in.

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Technology reviews

Turbo.264 starting to annoy me now

Elgato Turbo H.264

So I have this thing called an Elgato Turbo.264 that plugs into my Mac. It’s designed to speed up video conversion, which it does more or less: anything I’ve recorded on my EyeTV gets exported to my iPhone or AppleTV a whole lot quicker than without it, other things not so less. Still, it integrates nicely with Video Drive, which has been giving me problems of late with regular old QuickTime, so it’s hard to do without.

Trouble is, it’s having problems with other videos now, particularly AVIs.

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