Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Television Entertainment

NBC Direct Launches With Free Downloads 273

Posted by kdawson
from the tv-for-some dept.
thefickler writes "It's here, and it's no joke. NBC has launched NBC Direct where most shows can be watched online and some shows are available for full episode downloads. This comes after NBC decided to pull out of iTunes." For now it's Windows only, XP or Vista, IE 6 or 7.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

NBC Direct Launches With Free Downloads

Comments Filter:
  • by compumike (454538) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @05:47AM (#21312039) Homepage
    Finally, someone understands that the times when we've got time to watch old TV episodes, we're not likely to have internet access! I've often found myself traveling (train/plane) and it's been a perfect time to watch, but have been thwarted because of streaming-only services.

    Of course, the Windows-only DRM makes this totally useless to me at the moment. Actually, can anyone think of any examples where a service promised Mac/Linux versions "coming soon" and it actually happened? I sure can't... That's DRM for you. :-(

    --
    Educational microcontroller kits for a digital generation. [nerdkits.com]
    • by deniable (76198) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:05AM (#21312107)
      I don't mind the streaming, so long as the pinheads involved allow buffering and caching. If a video is taking too long from Youtube, you can pause it and let it buffer the damn thing. The CBS innertube wouldn't do this, and gods was it annoying getting a word every five seconds. That was for the mandatory ad, I gave up on the whole thing after that.

      As an aside, the only videos I see with Windows DRM are porn spam that use a 'feature' of WMP to take you to a website for licenses and malware.
    • Finally, someone understands that the times when we've got time to watch old TV episodes, we're not likely to have internet access! I've often found myself traveling (train/plane) and it's been a perfect time to watch, but have been thwarted because of streaming-only services.

      If you want to watch while disconnected, perhaps you should consider buying the show on DVD?

      Perhaps also, these benefits should be pegged under the benefits of DRM? I mean, it's not like NBC would release their programs for free and DR

      • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:19AM (#21312345)
        C.S.I season 5 just hit the stores around here in local region (region 1 parallel import is region 7 I think, but you aren't supposed to be able to see them), so if you follow the show on TV (which is season 7 right now I think) its kinda hard to pick up the season for a trip.

        I for one hope NBC etc. will release the shows for international viewers, and I don't care about any commercials, as long as I can pick up the program and watch it at my own convenience, the only stuff I pick off of torrent these days are TV shows since they are so outdated when they finally hit the market here that its a mood point to buy them.
      • by Bert64 (520050)
        Do you really think i want to carry a stack of DVDs with me whenever i travel?
        I travel a lot, and often find myself on planes/trains and in hotels... And I always have a laptop with me due to the nature of why i'm travelling.
        My laptop HD is more than big enough to carry a stack of TV episodes, which work out around 350mb when xvid compressed. I would hate to have the hassle of lugging around a stack of physical media, and having to search through it and swap it in when i wanted to watch something. Not to me
      • by timeOday (582209)

        If you want to watch while disconnected, perhaps you should consider buying the show on DVD?
        Just get a TV capture card. I like NBC's thursday night lineup, but it's so chock full of product placements, you'd need a super AI to re-write the script and edit out scenes to actually "skip all the commercials."
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by adri (173121)
      Oh for gods sake people. Just watch the damned episodes if you can. If you can't then email NBC and tell them why (Doesn't work under Mac. Doesn't work under Linux. Doesn't work with my browser. etc.)

      If you just whinge here on slashdot and don't watch the episodes then you're not going to appear in their statistics. You -want- to appear in their statistics. Tell your friends about it. Get people to watch stuff. Whining about it not working -just right- for your situation doesn't help.

      You -want- the statisti
      • by tonsofpcs (687961)
        This is one of the most insightful comments that I have read in recent times. Ask most TV executives what it takes for them to review a portion of a show and possibly pull it, they will answer "one comment". They are concerned with what the audience thinks and they know that for every one comment they receive, there are many more people out there with a very similar viewpoint, their business is based upon this idea as ratings aren't captured from every viewer, but few and extrapolated to count everyone.
    • by shmlco (594907)
      Since you can't transfer it, and you have to watch it within 48 hours of downloading, those times and places where you're "not likely to have internet access" are a bit limited. But hey, have an up-to-date Windows XP or Vista notebook with the right version of IE and the latest .NET framework and the latest security packages and NBC's proprietary software and you're good to go and watch the show on the train or plane you mentioned. With ads, of course.

      What could be better than that?
      • by rucs_hack (784150)
        [koff] stage6 [/koff]
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by pla (258480)
        Since you can't transfer it

        ... Yet ...


        and you have to watch it within 48 hours of downloading

        ...Until DVD Jon or similar gets annoyed by that...


        those times and places where you're "not likely to have internet access" are a bit limited.

        Jokes aside, I'd say that NBC has finally seen the light - The future of the Internet doesn't look like TV, as traditional media execs always hoped; More that the future of TV looks like YouTube.

        If NBC has finally "gotten" it, good for them. This first laugha
        • by peragrin (659227)
          What's really funny is that the people who made iTunes popular aren't going to buy these video's as they may or may not work on their machines and won't use IE as they are smart enough to stay away from malware.
        • by node 3 (115640) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @11:10PM (#21318793)

          If NBC has finally "gotten" it
          If NBC had finally "gotten" it, their shows would still be available on iTunes.
    • by blackest_k (761565) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @08:04AM (#21312471) Homepage Journal

      Finally, someone understands that the times when we've got time to watch old TV episodes, we're not likely to have internet access! I've often found myself traveling (train/plane) and it's been a perfect time to watch, but have been thwarted because of streaming-only services.
      For me I can put films and Tv in divX or Xvid on my HTC universal (pda/phone 640x480) andlisten using bluetooth without the hazzle of headphones with cables in full resolution. Or take the sd card and slip it into a card reader or usb adapter and watch on a PC or a dvd/divX player that supports the card.

      My Pda/phone has more than enough battery life to use it for several hours like this.

      Off course I am limited to legal recordings made with my Mythtv box, which is set to automatically transcode to xvid.

      I could transcode to make my recordings compatible with the PSP, however I would have to setup a lower resolution and psp batteries hold fairly low charges and memory sticks are expensive. The Slimline PSP features a TV-Out so might be an attractive option for others.

      Streaming is a possibility since the htc universal is supported by the slingbox but Streaming video is not allowed on my Dataplan. Hotspots might work if I want to sit in starbucks and stream from my lan or youtube.
      however since the slingbox software doesn't allow recording I couldn't use that to transfer an episode to my pda whilst on the move.

      Actually there is an interesting idea would it be possible to down load a file with an intermittent wifi connection. using open wifi sources like la fonera.

      Podcasts are a possibility, http://www.podcastingnews.com/topics/Podcast_Software.html [podcastingnews.com] , there is software available for most platforms including pda and psp.

      Bittorrent also possible but so far only found a paid for client (about $20) http://www.adisasta.com/wmTorrent.html [adisasta.com]
      I don't know if it will cope with an intermittent connection thou.

      For Psp there is http://www.pspvideo9.com/pspcasting.html [pspvideo9.com] an interesting possibility.

      and emule for pda possibly http://www-info3.informatik.uni-wuerzburg.de/staff/mopi/mopiphant.shtml [uni-wuerzburg.de]

      Unfortunately the NBC service is completely useless to mobile users starting with the DRM but as you can see there are a number of alternatives, from the fully legal to the legally dubious. Some of which I'd not considered before this post. Is anyone familiar with a linux based server which supports partial downloads and resumes from varied IP addresses and a mobile client to connect to it? perhaps a private bit torrent.

       
    • by illectro (697914)
      The same OS limitations exist for the sites that are providing free music SpiralFrog lets you download only and needs a special active X control so it's effectively Windows + IE users only, imeem on the other hand is streaming only, but works on anything that can run a reasonably up to date flash player. imeem easily has the best selection of music on this side of a dodgy p2p network, I think Universal is the only label that hasnt signed a deal with them, and on top of that is millions of user uploaded tra
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by JimDaGeek (983925)
      I know that you can watch ABC shows in Firefox/Safari on Mac OS X and Firefox/IE on MS Windows. Though sadly they don't support Firefox under Linux. I don't know why though, as it is mostly flash.

      Two operating systems and 3 browsers for ABC's service is way better than MS Windows only and IE only with NBC's half-@ssed effort.
  • by Zombie Ryushu (803103) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @05:49AM (#21312047)
    If its DRM restricted its not free. In beer or in Speech. Windows DRM means you have to pay for Windows which means that somewhere MS Gets a cut. So yes, your paying for it. And yes, Apples's DRM is no Better. I maintain my stance DRM has no right to exist, and DRM should be resisted by any means necessary. I want to live in a DRM free future no matter the cost.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:08AM (#21312125)
      In that case, I guess no software is ever free, since you have to buy the hardware to run it on.
      • by Bert64 (520050)
        Hardware will always incur a cost to produce because it's a physical good made of physical raw materials. Each unit still requires the raw materials, and the processing of them, coupled with the cost of transporting those goods and the final product around. Add to that, the heavy competition among hardware makers that keeps prices down and margins low, no charging $500 for something costing $5 to make.
        Software and other media can easily be reproduced at no cost, so the natural progression of a competitive m
        • by jackalope (99754) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @09:02AM (#21312651)
          Your logic forgets one significant source of cost in hardware and software development. Non-recurring engineering (NRE) is a significant contributor to the cost of hardware and the primary contributor to the cost of software.

          For example, a IC that costs $5 probably has NRE costs upwards of a couple million dollars. Due to the cost of setting up chip fabrication and paying the engineers to do all the chip layout and design. The chip itself will cost pennies to fabricate, but the company producing the chip needs to recoup all the NRE costs spent to get to that first chip so they charge $5.

          The same is true for non-free software. It may cost pennies to produce a CD or sub-pennies to download the binaries, but the company must recoup the NRE costs if they are to remain in business. That is why software costs money.

          For free software, the makers of the software are looking to recoup their NRE in other ways. The hobbyist is usually looking for recognition, resume' enhancement, or just enjoyment. But, the hobbyist isn't looking to buy groceries with their good looks; the most likely have a day job that pays the bills. I posit that hobbyist do not produce the high quality free software that we've come to know and love, they just don't have the time or organization (they contribute but they are not the primary producers). The professional organization producing free software (IBM, RedHat, etc) are looking for other revenue streams from the free-customers to pay the NRE on the free software, through support fees or licensing related products.

          All in all, to my point. Software is not free either. Somebody has to spend labor time producing it and those somebodies expect to get paid somehow.
           
    • by TheVelvetFlamebait (986083) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:28AM (#21312371) Journal
      You can construct your own personal DRM-free future! All you have to do is ignore it! Don't buy/watch/download/give/take DRMed media! You'll have a reasonably faithful simulation of your DRM-free future without the hassle or rudeness of forcing it upon on everyone else!
      • by David Jao (2759)
        It hardly seems worth mentioning, but DRM is costly even if you avoid all media. If nothing else, DRM increases the cost of hardware [auckland.ac.nz]).

        Sure, you can boycott DRM hardware, to a point, but at some point you have no choice. For example, DVI monitors are limited in resolution, and if you want to upgrade to HDMI, all HDMI monitors come with DRM. Also, what choice do you have, if all hardware by law must support DRM [wikipedia.org]?

    • ...not. "by any means necessary..."

      Non-obligatory Sports Night Quote: "And because I love you I can say this: no rich young white guy has ever gotten anywhere with me comparing himself to Rosa Parks. Got it?"

    • I keep my current signature as a reminder, because I now work in an industry that has all kinds of DRM. I work with the knowledge that my code will very likely be restricted by copyright and DRM.

      I keep it to remind me not to become complacent, to further a DRM-free world if I can.

      But, consider: Would you take this to the extent of not buying any DVDs? After all, they contain DRM, even if it's been cracked wider than the Goatse Man's ass.

      Would you avoid going to movies, or watching TV, because the same compa
    • I maintain my stance DRM has no right to exist, and DRM should be resisted by any means necessary. I want to live in a DRM free future no matter the cost.

      "By any means necessary"?

      "... no matter the cost"?

      You're not alone in opposing DRM, but what are you going to do, barricade yourself in a church tower with a Remington 700 and start plucking off studio execs one by one?

  • Obligatory (Score:5, Informative)

    by OverlordQ (264228) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @05:54AM (#21312069) Journal
    Link to the site itself [nbc.com] since TFS doesn't include one.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:03AM (#21312097)
    Yeah, this will keep me from the torrents.
    • PARENT IS INSIGHTFUL (Score:4, Interesting)

      by aussie_a (778472) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @08:05AM (#21312477) Journal
      I know a lot of Australians who download content illegally simply because it isn't available any other way at the time (if we want to wait 12 months we might get it then). The telivision channels have begun combating this by showing shows within a fortnight after America, but its still not the norm.
    • Watch out, you're on a dark path. First it's the torrents, next thing you know you're on the marijuana.
  • Strike (Score:5, Insightful)

    by El Lobo (994537) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:06AM (#21312115)
    And this is exactly why the writers are now on strike. They get nothing from the distribution online while the broadcasting companies gets all the income generated from ads, etc. But even worst: they get nothing from the distribution on DVD in some cases.
  • Because NBC's content is so good it is worth the bandwidth to download it.
  • by simp (25997) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:07AM (#21312121)
    Hello NBC,
    I'm from Europe and I have one XP and two linux PCs. And your marketing department seems to be utterly clueless as to how they ever could target me via advertisements on a webpage or embedded in a video. And selling your old TV series to European TV stations years later does no cut it.

    Yet any localized Google homepage shows me unobtrusive ads that are relevant to my search queries and geographical location. Times are changing NBC. Adapt or die.

    Signed,
    A user from Europe who wants to buy cheap American stuff.
    • The BBC sells plenty of old crap here in the States, too. If you don't like it then don't watch it?

      I do agree that NBC is rather clueless, but not for the reason you cited.
    • by tero (39203) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:41AM (#21312413)
      Hear hear! I'm also ready to spend my strange foreign money on cheap US entertainment! Just give me a chance and I will!

      Nothing new here, European users are fcked since the international profit cycle is built on selling us the old crap (and our local channels gladly buying it).
      I was initially very excited about this, but then realised it sounded too good to be true. And it was.

      Oh well, back to downloading my stuff illegally and waiting for the Police to kick down the front door.
  • It works in Firefox (Score:3, Informative)

    by MSRedfox (1043112) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:08AM (#21312127)
    I just watched part of 'Life' in Firefox without any problems. So the the claim for IE only is false.
    • Before some else complains about it, I should note that I can't download the episodes in Firefox. But the streaming working perfectly fine. So it seems like it is only partially IE dependent. I'm curious if the streaming will work on with a MAC or Linux, or if it is Windows only.
      • by aussie_a (778472)
        It may be IE independent for streaming, but its certainly America-dependent for viewing. That's okay the only NBC show I watch is heroes and we're getting that 2 weeks after America anyway.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by ogfomk (677034)
        It works with Fedora 7 and Firefox. I am enjoying The Tonight Show.
      • Before some else complains about it, I should note that I can't download the episodes in Firefox. But the streaming working perfectly fine. So it seems like it is only partially IE dependent. I'm curious if the streaming will work on with a MAC or Linux, or if it is Windows only.
        Streaming seems to work just just fine with Firefox on Slackware.
      • by krunk7 (748055)
        I watch nbc shows in OSX all the time. It works in both Safari and Firefox.
  • No thanks. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ChangeOnInstall (589099) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:21AM (#21312157)
    Is this what they're talking about:

    http://www.nbc.com/Chuck/video/episodes.shtml [nbc.com]

    Quality is crap in fullscreen, even though there's a 2" margin on each side of the screen in that mode. It played a 30 second ad for "Scrubbing Bubbles" shower cleaner before letting me watch it (fine with me). I then tested the use case of "I missed the last part of this show" and tried to get toward the end. This resulted in the ad playing again, twice.

    Good luck competing with BitTorrent on that. It would take 30 minutes to BitTorrent an HD version of that show, transcoded into a 350MB XVID file in 480p quality. The file would be entirely free of commercials of any kind.

    If they want to make this work, they need to offer shows for download in an unencrypted format. Feel free to play a 30 second or even minute-long video ad before allowing the download of a show. Feel free to add commercial breaks to the file. Feel free to require registration and include your zip code, such that local ads can be provided. But don't try to enforce any special player requirements, DRM, or mandatory commercial watching. Don't make me watch it in a web browser, or with a border around it (each additional inch of TV screen is exponentially more expensive). Make sure the video is at least 480p.

    Do this and you won't have anyone downloading the ad-free version of a show on BitTorrent/p2p.
    • Do this and you won't have anyone downloading the ad-free version of a show on BitTorrent/p2p.

      Not so sure about that argument. 'In Rainbows' was free (if you wanted) but was still pirated anyway [slashdot.org]. I'm sure that there would still be many people who still rather download the shows through torrents just because they don't have to worry about ads (with the added bonus of not having an increase in file size or a decrease in quality).

      • by Bert64 (520050)
        It was pirated because that's what people are used to.
        Non pirated versions are often inferior (drm etc) than the pirated ones, such that many people are now in the habit of simply downloading pirated copies. Many probably didn't even realise that 'in rainbows' was available legitimately under the same terms they usually pirate it.
    • by rpillala (583965)

      I think you've identified one crucial thing that NBC has to address before they can treat this like regular TV. Just now I tried to watch an episode of "Life" and ran into the DRM issue. So now I've uninstalled the player. That's not the issue though. While I was realizing that this DRM thing wasn't going away, I saw and heard that same Bertolli ad 5 times. Once just for kicks I tried fullscreen and it was horribly, obviously interlaced. Still not the problem. The real issue is that to achieve Google

  • Correction (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Aqua OS X (458522) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:34AM (#21312197)
    So here are your downloading options...
    1) Goto BitTorrent... where new shows pop up right after they air, download speeds are insanely fast, there are no ads, there is no DRM, and I can get video that will play on whatever computer or device I want.
    2) Goto NBC... where new shows pop up at 2am, I'm downloading from one source, there are ads, lots of ads, there is DRM, lots of DRM, and I can only play video on a Vista or XP computer.

    NBC doesn't seem to realize that a conveniance based model has more opportunities for growth. Time after time the internet has favored those who have figured out how to make a profit by catering to conveniance.

    • Re:Correction (Score:5, Insightful)

      by totally bogus dude (1040246) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @08:11AM (#21312495)

      I agree. They have a big advantage over the cap groups: they have the episode well before it's aired, in perfect quality. They could put up their own torrents for it the moment the episode ends on TV, or even halfway through it. Provide their own trackers, but submit the torrent to the popular sites so it's easy to access (in addition to putting it on their own website). Using their own trackers means they get viewership statistics -- probably more accurate than the Neilson family stats at that!

      Most people will use the official torrent: it's guaranteed good quality, complete, available before anyone else's, and sanctioned by the producer. People will tolerate some ads, so long as they're not obnoxious. There's only so many companies that can be advertised in a global market, anyway. Add a "If you want to support this show, visit ..." to the end credits and have a site which lists the show's sponsors, a donation box, merchandise, etc. This site could use localisation to tell you about the sponsors nearest to you, so the networks don't need to miss out on local ad revenue.

      It's interesting how big media still seems to believe they absolutely must exert 100% complete control over their content in order to be profitable, while seemingly oblivious to the fact they haven't had control for a long time and have been profitable regardless. Most people aren't greedy and selfish, but I think most people do feel completely disconnected from the fate of their favourite shows. For the vast majority of people, the networks have absolutely no idea what shows they watch. What does it matter if I torrent a show rather than watch it on TV? I'm not going to buy stuff I see advertised during it, and even if I did, the company that makes it has no real way of correlating that with the fact they sponsored a particular show.

      I guess realistically, it's easier for the networks to produce a few shows which rake in millions in advertising, than it is to produce a lot of shows which are individually profitable, but with smaller margins.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Aladrin (926209)
        "Most people will use the official torrent: "

        I feel the need to make a point on this. Most people will choose the official torrent even if it's riddled with ads, so long as they can fast-forward just like any non-DRM video... Even if they have to wait longer than the pirated versions.

        Guaranteed quality... You mentioned that. While 'release groups' pretty much also guarantee the quality of their work, getting the video right from the source is even more sure.

        Legality... Many people don't see any problem
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Bert64 (520050)
      They could also easily undercut the pirates...
      They offer for download an ad-supported version in a standard format and at multiple resolutions right when the show airs, or even before... And host it using something like Akamai...
      So the legal one comes out first, is the same or better quality than the pirate version, downloads as quick or faster, but has ads. For most people, it will simply be easier to put up with the ads (providing they're not insanely intrusive) than to wait for a pirate version with the
    • NBC doesn't seem to realize that a conveniance based model has more opportunities for growth. Time after time the internet has favored those who have figured out how to make a profit by catering to conveniance.

      Except that one of your examples is illegal and the other is not. I've never found BitTorrent to be "fast". It usually takes me over 8-36 hours to download a 2 hour 700 MB movie when I try it. I have to leave it going overnight and this is on a 6 Mbps ADSL connection. In fact, I always choose an

  • In the article it does say they are rolling out support for the other platforms soon, its just a matter of time. So it's not like another BBC, the software for other platforms is coming soon. Which frankly I think is perfectly fair, they were working to a tight deadline before christmas so they've fulfilled their needs for the largest target market and now they're moving on to the smaller operating systems.
    • Supporting other platforms means offering DRM Free media. Like the BBC iPlayer, there will never be sanctioned Linux playablity.
  • by Kickasso (210195) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:38AM (#21312211)
    Yeah. For all values of "now" in this millennium.
  • Works fine on a Mac (Score:4, Informative)

    by Killer Eye (3711) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @06:44AM (#21312233)
    Not sure where the Windows/etc. requirements came from, but I'm viewing it perfectly right now on my Mac.

    Using Leopard (10.5) and OmniWeb (based on the Safari engine), in case that's significant.
  • Good Next Step... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by KookyMan (850095) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:04AM (#21312303)
    ...but still a ways to go. Before everyone jumps on the bandwagon about it being Pro-IE/Pro-DRM, at least give credit to the fact that its yet another step in the right direction with offering downloads.. They're trying it out, and I think will find it will be a success... Perhaps next ABC/CBS will follow this lead and knock out a little more of the restrictions, say opening to any browser, or removing the DRM. When it comes to big corporations, changes come small and slow. This is defiantly a good thing, lets just hope it continues down this path.
  • Great Timing! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by owlnation (858981) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:23AM (#21312357)
    Excellent timing! The perfect time to launch this is during a writers' strike where they are trying to be justly paid for such downloadable content.

    Kind of makes a mockery of the studios argument, namely: giving this stuff away free on the net is just worthless promotional material. If that's truly the case, why not just give it away free? i.e. no DRM, and no region nor software restrictions.

    Or might it be that the studios are... lying?
  • by brunes69 (86786) <`slashdot' `at' `keirstead.org'> on Sunday November 11, 2007 @07:42AM (#21312415) Homepage
    Once again, a TV download/streaming service that blocks out Canadian viewers, even though we get all shows broadcast at the exact same time as the US. Maybe I would watch the shows legally if they let me.

    Back to Torrents...
  • by MMC Monster (602931) on Sunday November 11, 2007 @08:13AM (#21312503)
    Watching the first episode of Heroes via Firefox (it's using flash).
  • * Requires Windows, not even a Mac will do
    * IE only
    * Full of DRM (the reason for the first two)
    * Full of ads ...

    I just don't see how NBC could have fucked up more.
  • There's really not much reason for these major networks to go through iTunes. All of them, including NBC, have offerered significant amounts of streaming content on their own websites for quite a while now, in decent, very-tolerable quality, (usually comparable to that of SDTV or VHS), even if it's not HD. It's obvious that the major networks are not incompetent when it comes to new forms of media distribution. The major challenge for them is protecting their revenue, seeing as how ads make up nearly all
  • If I have to purchase Windows to play these then it's not a free service. It requires setup costs and maybe hardware.

    It's only free if I can utilise the files on my existing hardware and OS.
  • Clueless. (Score:5, Informative)

    by mattr (78516) <mattr AT telebody DOT com> on Sunday November 11, 2007 @08:33AM (#21312567) Homepage Journal
    Great I thought, and then had the wind taken out of my sails. They refuse to display the clip if you are out of the region they define. Despite that it would be used I think by people on vacation who don't want to miss their favorite show. Sum of my experience:

    1. Watch TV! Yay!
    2. But it's NBC! They have a lot of programs and they all suck! Honestly I wanted to watch Stargate Atlantis or some kind of scifi-y thing. Nope. They got ten cop shows though. Fine I pick the updated Bionic Woman I haven't seen before.
    3. Figure out their convoluted interface, okay. Very spiffy but what I really want is to quickly find out what the show is about then watch it, y'know? Looks like they must spend a lot of money to add shows to this system.
    4. They don't have the first episode of the series! Arrrgh! No matter of clicking little arrows will show it!
    5. Pick a chapter. Wuh? This isn't a DVD!! Will I have to click each chapter as they finish? (Cringe!)
    6. Okay here we go, I clicked the first chapter of the first clip I could find. ARRRRRGHH!! I'm in Japan and instead of a video, the video pane shows a message saying they refuse to show the video!! AAAAAACK!
    7. Goodbye NBC.

  • I mean, it's not like they could take away the reason to use P2P to get shows if you live in a slow-assed country, or one that don't air their shows in the first place.

    It's not like they can use the opportunity to provide even ad-supported services to spread their material to those.

    Nahh, let's just lose profits to them instead.
  • My favorite part is this ominous line in their EULA:

    YOU SPECIFICALLY AGREE THAT THE SOFTWARE MAY DELETE FILES AND CONTENT FROM YOUR HARD DRIVE(S) AND OTHER COMPUTER MEDIA.

    Now, they'll say this just pertains to the content you download from them, but the wording is disconcertingly broad, don't you think?

  • Could you put something up there that folks might actually want to watch? Oh, I don't know...something like a top ten hit show that isn't a game show or football game? Seriously, who's interested in a canned version of Monday Night Football? And sorry, as much as I love Howie Mandel, I'm not going to go hunt down a startup non-iTunes portal just to watch a silly game show. I'd watch a 40-year-old episode of The Gong Show or even Simon's Greatest Diss Hits from American Idol, but there's no way I'm getting e

    • From what I understand, Heroes and The Office are among NBCs top shows. They have been available from this service for quite some time. I also don't know where the "IE Only" comes from. Maybe this is along the research lines of "I tried it in firefox, and it didn't work. And firefox is so good they must be blocking everything that isn't IE there is no other explanation MS SUX!!"
  • I thought that Hulu [wikipedia.org] was meant to be NBC's new video service. How is this different, other than being out of beta and windows-only?
  • Someone said that the box everyone clicks away at the installation of IE somewhere says that you are only allowed to run IE in Windows. But if you need sth. that is only available to IE and can't or don't want to run a full virtualized Windows...

    So does NBC work in IE + Wine?

    Thx
  • 1) it doesn't run on my Mac.
    2) I am not going to go out and buy ( and install) Windows (along with its various regular patches) to watch an NBC show. The shows just aren't that good.

    This all comes back to control. NBC thinks it should have absolute control of how/when/where you watch their shows. The public has said they don't want that anymore (DVRs, BitTorrent, iTunes are all examples of this). But NBC still insists on absolute control. Their solutions: a streaming approach (I tried it once and it was so

"One Architecture, One OS" also translates as "One Egg, One Basket".

Working...