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Comcast puts YouTube in its TV boxes to entice would-be cord-cutters

Enlarge (credit: Comcast)

Comcast on Tuesday said that it has started integrating YouTube into its X1 set-top boxes across the US. The two companies first announced the partnership this past February.

Much like the deal Comcast struck with Netflix last year, the move will see the YouTube app sit in the X1’s home screen, allowing subscribers to put the popular video service on their TV without switching to a third-party device like a Roku or Apple TV.

Comcast says it will also plant a handful of YouTube videos in its on-demand video section as well. Clips in the “Music” section of the on-demand menu, for instance, might feature music videos from the YouTube app.

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The very dirty history of on-demand video technology

Enlarge / It's the Sony U-Matic in all its analog glory. This device was used in the early 1970s to stream X-rated video to hotel rooms, often using a closed-circuit broadcasting device on the hotel roof. (credit: Wikimedia)

In 1973, a young Roger Ebert reviewed the movie Deep Throat. He was not yet a household name or a Pulitzer Prize winner, but he was a respected film critic. The fact that he and his peers regularly reviewed pornographic films suggested that we’d entered a new era in film—an era in which pornography might be viewed as art.

Turns out that wasn’t the case. More than 40 years later, people are still arguing about whether porn can be art. But that doesn’t mean the early '70s weren’t a turning point for porn. The year before Roger Ebert saw Deep Throat, the Hotel Commodore in New York City shocked the nation by announcing that it had installed a system which would let viewers watch X-rated titles in their hotel rooms. It might not be art, but porn had become a testing bed for new kinds of on-demand video technologies.

The United States was not the nation to lead the world into this new era. Japan got there first. Technology-friendly Osaka had hotels built specifically for many different combinations of sex and video. Some hotel rooms came equipped with video cameras, as well as, presumably, both an overworked technical staff and an overworked cleaning staff. Other rooms simply had a television that picked up the signal of a closed-circuit broadcasting device on the roof, creating an early form of streaming video. In 1971, one hotel's device made contact with a steel safety railing. This considerably increased the broadcast range and gave surrounding houses a glimpse of movies that not everyone appreciated.

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Apple’s WWDC app updated with session info, streaming video section, more

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To ready attendees for the 2017 WWDC, Apple has updated its companion app for iOS and tvOS, with details for some -- but not all -- of the sessions to be held.

Bloomberg partners with Twitter to generate 24/7 streaming video news service

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News titan Bloomberg and Twitter have teamed up to create a service for constant news streaming on the social media venue 24 hours a day.

MacTrast Deals: Getflix: Lifetime Subscription

A Getflix: Lifetime Subscription can help you bypass geographic restrictions on streaming content. Getflix unblocks more than 100 streaming channels around the world.

MacTrast Deals: Getflix: Lifetime Subscription

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