Downloading, streaming, or encoding music and movies.
Dennis goes overseas a lot and listens to both audio books and podcasts. He has an audio library now of several hundred books. But recently he's been unable to transfer purchases from his iTunes account. It requires him to erase his iPod to transfer them. Leo says that's copy protection nonsense. One thing Dennis can do is download them again from Audible.
Kathy watches Leo online through UStream and is frustrated because it buffers a lot. Leo says it's on UStream's end, and he can't do much about it. He also streams through BitGravity and Justin.TV, so she could try one of those. Also, choosing the lower resolution from BitGravity could help. Kathy should also look at her bandwidth online. If she only has 1.5 Mbps down, for instance, she will continue to have a rough time with streaming. It could also be a bad modem. She should ask for a new modem or buy her own. She could first try rebooting both the modem and router.
Joe uses Google Play on iOS and has an issue with uploading his music. Leo says like iTunes Match, it uploads all the music it doesn't have to his cloud account via Google. But Joe can't upload any more than 1300 songs. Leo says that if they're copy protected, the songs won't copy. So if he has songs with DRM, Google Play will ignore them.
Aereo, a company that uses tiny antennas in major cities to capture and stream live TV over the internet, will be battling broadcasters in the Supreme Court. Users of the Aereo service pay a monthly fee to access the channels, and in effect, are just paying for an antenna to receive the content. Broadcasters have sued Aereo claiming that it's illegal, and that the subscribers of Aereo aren't paying for the content. The confusing part is that this is content that is actually free over-the-air, if you lived in that area anyway.
John says that when he watches video online, it buffers and the quality devolves a lot. Leo says it's amazing how we expect streaming video to have the quality of television now. And often it is. But data doesn't arrive in order and on time like a broadcast signal is. It's transmitted in packets and sometimes those packets arrive out of order, and has to wait for the missing packets to be received in order to play them back. If it doesn't arrive, then it stutters to the next available packet. The computer John is using may not be fast enough, though.
Mike wants to know if there is any one service that can offer all his entertainment needs: music, movies, tv shows, eBooks, audio books, etc. Leo says that Apple and Amazon would probably be the closest, but the entertainment world is pretty fragmented between Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Audible, and others. Leo says that people are basically used to the idea of paying several smaller fees a month instead of one large cable bill. The irony is, people aren't really saving anything, which was the main force driving cord cutting.
Robin is looking to cut the cable and wants to use an over-the-air antenna to get live TV. Leo says that if she can get reception, then an antenna can take over for the satellite and she'll end up with a very nice, and more uncompressed HD broadcast. Leo advises going to AntennaWeb.org and see what she can get in her area based on her address. It'll also recommend the best antenna for her area.
Georgeanna has an RV and a satellite dish. She's thinking about using Slingbox and a Hotspot with her cellphone, but that'll impact her data plan. Leo says that will definitely hurt the data plan, and the quality won't be all that great even over 4G. Slingbox is a good option though if she can get Wi-Fi connected to it. There are self aiming satellite antennas, but they aren't cheap.
After Winamp had announced it was shutting down, Spotify created an app called "Spotiamp" as a tribute to the popular Windows jukebox app. Spotify's version will allow you to stream tunes through Spotify using the classic Winamp interface.
It's not clear whether or not Winamp will be purchased by another company. There are rumors indicating a deal could be in the works for Microsoft to buy the app from AOL, but there haven't been any further details on it.