Warner Bros. entering streaming game by proving access to old films, TV shows | More streaming news
Adrian McCoy, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
11:32 AM, Apr 12, 2013
Warner Bros. has ventured into online streaming with Warner Archive Instant. The new streaming service taps Warner's impressive library of films, many of which aren't available through other streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Red Box Instant or Amazon.
The site offers a collection of classic films from Warner Bros., RKO, MGM and Allied Artists, with more titles coming soon. There are choices in all genres, dating back to the 1920s. There are a handful of TV series, including the first season of "The Adventures of Superman," "77 Sunset Strip" and "Hawaiian Eye."
There are several specialty sections: After Midnight -- classic horror films, including "Cat People," "The Fearless Vampire Killers" and "The Mummy"; Guilty Pleasures, a collection of so-bad-it's-good sci-fi and camp; and Incendiary Cinema, a selection of controversial films.
Some titles are available in HD for those watching with a Roku set-top box.
Subscriptions are $9.99/month, and can be canceled anytime. Warner Bros. is offering a two-week free trial period.
For those of us who watch TV and are constantly saying, "Who is that guy?," Amazon has the answer. The online retailer and video streaming service is expanding its "X-Ray for Movies" feature to TV viewing as well.
With "X-Ray for TV," people who watch streaming video on their Kindle Fire can easily identify actors just by tapping the screen. X-Ray draws the information from IMDB (Internet Movie Database), which is an Amazon subsidiary.
When browsing TV and movie content, look for the "Includes X-Ray icon." If it's there, simply tap the Kindle screen while watching the TV show or movie, and the names of cast members in the current screen will be displayed. Tapping on a name will pause the video and deliver bio and filmography information for that person.
X-Ray for TV is available for most of the TV shows streaming on Amazon Instant Video, and the company plans to expand the selection weekly.
It's also available with the Amazon Instant Video app for the Wii U.
Many music fans have spent happy hours exploring the Concert Vault, an online archive of live concert recordings.
The new Concert Vault iPad app brings that collection to the iPad.
There are seven music channels: rock, blues, jazz, country, folk, bluegrass and indie.
Concert Vault is a large collection of live concert recordings -- audio and video -- dating from the 1950s to the present. Recordings come from The Bill Graham/Fillmore archives, and from Newport Jazz, Newport Folk, King Biscuit, Record Plant and other collections.
New to the collection are concerts from the "Golden Age of Alternative Rock" series, including '90s-era performances by Radiohead, Foo Fighters, Meat Puppets, Alanis Morrisette, The Smashing Pumpkins, Violent Femmes and others.
Concert Vault members can stream videos from their tablets to an Apple TV.
Membership is $3.99/month, or $39.99/year and includes two free full concert downloads a week. There's a free seven-day trial. The iPad and iPhone apps are free and available through iTunes.