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Patent Trollvi rises…

Yes, the leaks were true. Rovi intends to purchase TiVo.

While TiVo creates amazing products and has successfully deployed their solution to numerous cable operators around the world, beyond patent litigation and licensing, they haven’t found much financial success. Basically, the writing was on the wall. Continue Reading…

Amazon has passed what looks to be a second generation Dash button thru the FCC — based on filing approach, device profile, and model number. But, given the very limited information, the only obvious enhancement is Bluetooth LE joining the existing 802.11 WiFi variants, potentially allowing smartphone or home automation interaction beyond what’s currently available in merely reordering supplies via wireless. Alexa-like integration would be cool…

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As to other upcoming Amazon reveals: I’m also currently tracking what’s either a new Fire tablet or Kindle e-reader or, alternately, an existing device of that sort headed to new markets. Stay tuned.

TiVo’s always had a bit of a marketing problem. Yet it’s not exactly clear if it’s because their value proposition is difficult to communicate (possibly) or their efforts are misguided (definitely) or a bit of both (likely). But it’s deliciously ironic that they’ve announced they’re dialing back their advertising spend … the very same month their research unit indicates a negative impact on brand awareness and sales. Skate to where the puck will never be?

From Broadcasting & Cable:

Cutting TV ad spending led to much lower sales for most of the marketers included in a new study. […] For every dollar cut from the TV budget, sales fell $3 dollars, the research found. Return on investment dropped as well. The average marketer reduced its ad budget by $3.1 million, resulting in lost sales of $8.6 million. […] In terms of other marketing goals, the companies that cut their ad spending reached fewer potential customers.

From TiVo’s quarterly call:

And then on the consumer side, we are going to be investing less in the Marketing of consumer.

Hack Thyself

Dave Zatz —  January 1, 2016

Like Chipotle and Honda before them… “Jessica Jones” took over Netflix’s Twitter account today.

As wireless data usage increases, T-Mobile has seemingly come up with a clever solution to satiate customers without saturating their network. “Binge On” will enable unlimited video streaming, from select providers like Netflix and WatchESPN, that doesn’t count against one’s cap. T-Mobile marketing states they’ve “optimized” the video … which some are reporting as 480p. On the go, on a small screen, that may be sufficient for most. I’d probably make that trade at the gym for treadmill Netflix, given the facility’s WiFi struggles and the potential to burn through my Verizon bucket.

From Fierce Wireless:

The reality is that Binge On will be imposed on all of T-Mobile’s customers starting Sunday, including the ones who have signed up for its unlimited data plans. Customers who don’t want the service will have to opt out of it. Yes, Binge On gives T-Mobile’s customers free streaming video, but it also reduces the resources T-Mobile needs to employ to deliver that video. It’s a smart move, but it’s not as altruistic as Legere might imply.

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Of course, there are two sides to every coin. And some will object to reduced video quality. Assuming they even know T-Mobile took the liberty of making that change on their behalf. Further, “zero rating” is something of a net neutrality issue. Continue Reading…

(Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc is set to open its first physical book store in Seattle on Tuesday, the company said.

The brick-and-mortar store, Amazon Books, is a physical extension of Amazon.com with books being selected based on customer ratings and pre-orders on Amazon.com.

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Popularity on Goodreads and curators’ assessments are also considered for short listing the books. The in-store and online prices of the books would be same, Amazon said on Monday.

The store will also have an option to test drive Amazon’s devices such as Kindle, Echo, Fire TV and Fire Tablet.

Amazon Books, which is located in Seattle’s University Village, will be open every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, the company said.

(Reporting by Rishika Sadam in Bengaluru; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)

Picking up Aereo’s assets back was one of TiVo’s more inspired marketing moves. But I wonder if it’s being squandered…

Since the deal closed, TiVo has sent out several waves of email campaigns to Aereo castaways… that may not be resonating, as TiVo, in its current form, isn’t much of an Aereo replacement.

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Harnessing Portlandia to tug on those cord cutting heart-strings, TiVo ratchets up the rhetoric today as they move into aereo.com with an impassioned 237 word plea. Some highlights: Continue Reading…

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I hate AT&T by Aaron Slater on Flickr.

Just a day or so after sealing the deal, new graphics have been pushed to DirecTV Genie boxes at warp speed to update bootup imagery and the screensaver with AT&T branding. Faster even than Verizon can drop DirecTV from their FiOS offerings. If only making NFL Sunday Ticket available to U-verse could be as efficient… (Thanks Joseph!)