Netflix losing many of its biggest movies

From Recode:

Netflix says it is not renewing a distribution deal with cable network Epix, which means its U.S. subscribers will lose access  to big Hollywood movies like “Hunger Games: Catching Fire”, “World War Z” and “Transformers: Age of Extinction”at the end of September. The trade-off, says Netflix: It is making its own movies — but subscribers will have to wait a while to see most of them.

After this deal expires most of the big Hollywood movies on Netflix will come from Disney - which includes Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm. Netflix is banking that its original series and movies will be good enough to retain subscribers and attract new ones. Epic will look to replace the lost revenue with a deal with Hulu or someone else or a new exclusive deal with Amazon perhaps. Netflix really is trying to become HBO before HBO can become them.

However, HBO has done a pretty good job of making its content available to cable subscribers and cord-cutters/nevers alike. Anecdotally, I've been watching more and more HBO this year and less and less Netflix. It's almost September and I still haven't finished the current season of Orange is the New Black and never made it past the first episode of Marco Polo. In my opinion, HBO's content is consistently higher quality and more relevant to me. However, Netflix clearly wins on the variety and size of their content library. Hopefully this new battle between HBO and Netflix for original content creates even more great content for consumers that is available outside of the cable bundle.

2 months in with the new Macbook

I've been using the new Macbook as my main work machine for over two months now. I'm coming from a 2011 13" Macbook Pro, and haven't used anything newer extensively. That may mean I have a lower reference point, but it may also be closer to what a typical user would experience when upgrading. Here are a few quick impressions, and my thoughts on who this machine is best for.

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Watch F1 live streaming online on iPad, iPhone, Android, more

Watch F1 live streaming online again this season.  NBC is televising and streaming several Formula 1 Grand Prix’s in the US on mobile devices and computers.  NBC also streams lots of pre-race coverage of practice and qualifying sessions leading up to race day.  A cable TV subscription is required to watch F1 live streaming through NBC and their cable channels.

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WKND streaming guide update

As you may have noticed, in recent weeks I've been spending less time putting together the weekend streaming guide. The new job has been taking up a lot of my time, and my travel schedule has been busy as well. At this point, my plan is to do away with the weekly streaming guide, and instead post quick updates when there is news. A weekly email will still go out every Friday afternoon eastern time, including a summary of any posts from the week.

If you're reading this post as an email and would like to unsubscribe you can do so below (but I'd be really sad to see you go!).

Thanks for being a reader/subscriber, have a great weekend.

-John

MLB spinning out streaming video service - a model for the future of TV?

From Recode:

MLB Advanced Media, the company that streams video for Major League Baseball and many other clients, is getting ready to spin out its tech operations in a deal that would give the new company a value of at least $3 billion.

And as part of the spinout prep, MLBAM is bulking up: It has signed a long-term deal with pro hockey’s NHL, which will give MLBAM the rights to pro hockey’s digital subscription products, as well as its cable TV property.

MLB Advanced Media made MLB.tv possible, one of the first large-scale live streaming initiatives. That early experience led to them developing the back-end tech for other big live streaming entities, such as WWE Network, watchESPN, and HBO Now.

However, this is the first time that MLBAM is purchasing streaming rights from a media company and selling advertising. Could this be a model for the future of live sports? Will MLBAM morph into a major competitor for ESPN, or would ESPN consider buying them at (just) $3 billion?

Watch PGA golf online live on iPhone, iPad, PC

Watch PGA golf online live with the new Tour Live app for iPhone and iPad. The app includes free live streams from select tournaments and exclusive early-round coverage with a subscription. 

    Watch PGA golf online live with the new Tour Live app


Watch PGA golf online live with the new Tour Live app

Watch PGA golf online

For free, the app includes weekend live streams of featured groups and holes from select tournaments. This was previously available through the main PGA app. 

The main draw appears to be the $5/month subscription with access to early-round coverage from over 30 tournaments. Previously, early-round coverage from most tournaments was available online with a cable TV subscription that included the Golf Channel and alternate coverage was available for select tournaments. 

This may be a nice way to watch PGA golf online for hardcore fans without a cable subscription. Download the app here or go to the desktop website.

Other ways to watch PGA golf online

The PGA Tour has several television partners that make it possible to watch PGA golf online. The Golf Channel has early-round coverage of most tournaments, and extended weekend coverage of many tournaments. It is available through NBC Sports Live Extra with a cable subscription. Weekend broadcasts by NBC are also available this way.

CBS streams live weekend coverage from many tournaments, and the streams are available free through the PGA mobile app and website.

Some major tournaments are broadcast by additional channels and are available through watchESPN, FOX Sports Go, or TNT. Most of these streams require a cable subscription to watch PGA golf online, but ESPN does make some alternate coverage of its tournaments available free. Check the full schedule of PGA tournaments with TV information here.

HBO Now is available through Verizon Wireless and FiOS

FiOS internet customers can sign up for HBO Now today for the standard price of $15 per month. Verizon Wireless customers will be able to sign up soon. 

Since its launch, HBO Now has steadily increased distribution and is now available through Apple and Android devices and several internet providers. Sign up for a free trial.