Thursday, August 1, 2013

Internet Comes to TV

For you computer wary…

Imagine accessing the vast resources of internet without mastering the intricacies of Windows or its many miseries.  Without being a computer type.

Well, you can do it with a smartphone.

But, frankly, it has taken me four cellphones and a few years to get to the point where I use my cellphone automatically.    They’ve just fixed that bad code which caused Android phones to slow down over time, (and I had just learned how to overcome it just a bit before).

My smartphone now hums.   With my new $5 flip case I now pull it out in an instance for a quick use through the day.

It has also tough to navigate web pages on a phone, and it is only now that much of that has been simplified for phones by using  Apps.   Apps are simple ways to use internet without messy web pages and endless probing around through them..   But tablets are better, especially bigger.

Still, there is an even  bigger, better way now, especially for us seniors.    Our TV.  Better for old eyes and ears.

And the technology of TV is mostly wasted.    Using cable is like seeing with tunnel vision.    Often poor stuff at the wrong time.     Netflix proved that. and started to fill the gap.

Now, Google has come out with a $35 device which opens up your TV to much of internet.  Click or tap for a review,   Apple had already done that, even better, for its devices.   And there are other ways.   (All require a router, and internet service, though used in  different ways).

The bottom line is no need to put up with arcane systems and even difficult web pages and navigation, expensive and fussy equipment, endless tinkering
Just imagine accessing recorded PBS shows.. No recorder needed.  And PBS is only a drop in the Internet bucket.

The Apple iPad, combined with Apple TV, simply brings your tablet to TV via its tablet apps as opposed to confusing web pages.     For other tablets, an app called PlayTo does some of the same for selected sources, using AppleTV or the Roku box.
The Apple technology is called Airplay.  AirParrot does it for Windows but without the benefit of apps.

So far, Apple does it best.

You need a tablet at your TV chair.    It becomes your remote.   When there is a reference on TV to internet for supplemental video or material, you pick it up and send it to your TV.

Watch recorded TV when you want it.   Old shows,   Internet originated TV.   The music and radio you like.
It goes beyond that and all the stuff on internet archive…With a remote keyboard you can even run MS Office on the big screen.   Or you can dictate your stuff as I do.      Even record radio shows   or schedule them.  Or just read the paper onscreen.

No PC needed.   With voice recognition, “no hands, ma”.

Finally  Finally  Finally.  Something for everybody.  

What a transformation we have seen: from a PC as a personal computer, with arcane commands to handle only our personal tasks, to an easy-to-use appliance giving us the keys to our collective knowledge and experience.

Just happening now.

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