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Time Warner Cable Launches iPad App With Live TV 141

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the padding-your-nielsons dept.
ShadowFoxx writes "Time Warner Cable Inc. is launching an iPad application that plays live TV, becoming the first cable company to do so. The app will be free to download on Tuesday morning, but it will only work for people who subscribe to both video and Internet service from the New York-based cable company. Even then, it only works in the home, when the iPad is connected to the company's cable modem via a Wi-Fi router."
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Time Warner Cable Launches iPad App With Live TV

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  • uh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mingot (665080) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:14PM (#35496674)
    Uh, then who cares? I mean unless you really need to watch TV on the crapper.
    • by Desler (1608317)

      Or if your in bed and want to watch something without turning the TV on and disturbing your partner.

    • It's not a story of what this app does, it's a story of what this app doesn't do. It can't leave home WiFi, won't work while a passenger in a moving bus/train, it essentially acts as a hand-held TV only where you already can put a TV.

      • Re:uh (Score:4, Informative)

        by golden age villain (1607173) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:38PM (#35496976)
        Plus it is not the first app to offer a similar service. Zattoo has had an app with which you can watch tv on the iPad for months. Plus it works on any WiFi network.
      • It's not a story of what this app does, it's a story of what this app doesn't do. It can't leave home WiFi, won't work while a passenger in a moving bus/train, it essentially acts as a hand-held TV only where you already can put a TV.

        Just use Orb.com app. Now you can watch live tv (via your computers tv tuner card) anywhere you have a connection.

        • by Gilmoure (18428)

          Except that Comcast went and encrypted their tv signal so that most of the channels no longer come through as Clear QAM.

          • by PCM2 (4486)

            They're required to offer anything that should have been available over-the-air in the pre-digital days via Clear QAM. That means no History Channel and no Discovery, but then again, who would watch that crap when you've got six channels of PBS?

            (Mind you, I'm not saying they don't encrypt those channels in some markets -- but they're not supposed to.)

            • by Gilmoure (18428)

              Yup, the basic over-the-air stations are still available but the signal seems degraded. Petty Comcast crap of course but when they're the only provider where I'm at (can't even get the phone company out at our house without paying for several poles worth of cabling), we're kinda' stuck. If we didn't have our internet and phone through comcast, I'd switch to satellite.

          • by BitZtream (692029)

            So you just need the right tuner ... one that can handle CableCard(s) ...

            http://www.cetoncorp.com/products.php [cetoncorp.com]

            Problem solved.

      • by flyneye (84093)

        If I'm home I can watch T.V. DUH!
        If I do it on a Time Warner Idiot Box, then I come ever closer to that monthly cap.
        That must be their idea. They figure their customers are idiots and will go for it.

      • by anyGould (1295481)

        It's not a story of what this app does, it's a story of what this app doesn't do. It can't leave home WiFi, won't work while a passenger in a moving bus/train, it essentially acts as a hand-held TV only where you already can put a TV.

        With the added benefit of counting against your bandwidth caps!

        This is really a sucker's bet.

    • by Pieroxy (222434)

      What I don't understand is why those networks - whose sole objective should be to make their programs available to the greatest numbers - keep on dropping arbitrary limitations on this thing... I just don't get it. Just stream the whole damn thing from every where to everywhere for god's sake !!!! You are already broadcasting it to the entire country OTA, what the heck could be the point of crippling it so much on any other medium !!!!!

      • by dwightk (415372)

        I'm not sure Time Warner Cable is doing much OTA. I think they offer WiMAX sometimes, but that doesn't have anything to do with their television service.

      • by jejones (115979)

        Cable companies want you to continue to have to pay twice.

      • by afex (693734)
        time warner broadcasts everything OTA? man, my mythTV box must be severely misconfigured, because i only get like 5 stations!
        • by Pieroxy (222434)

          That is why I generalized my comment with "those networks". I don't know Time Warner in particular, but the networks that do OTA have the same stupid rules... go figure.

          • by mattack2 (1165421)

            The broadcast networks *contract* with the local providers to be able to provide the network programming in a certain area (and air their commercials).

            So the existing contracts are what prevent "the networks" from doing it. (Plus, "the networks" have contracts with the PRODUCTION COMPANIES of the shows, often different networks entirely, about how they can show the shows.)

            I'm not saying I agree with all of it, and as shows come up for new contracts, things like online streaming seem to be coming into the c

      • Re:uh (Score:4, Informative)

        by BitZtream (692029) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:54PM (#35497146)

        The content producers have required contractual obligations by companies like TWC that prevent them from doing things like making a way for you to view it from outside your home.

        Do you know how much effort went into just getting the legal OK for TWC to give you a DVR ... and then the outrageous amount of bullshit that happened to get network DVR allowed? And why you won't find things like a 30 second skip forward button on the remote with your TWC dvr ...

        I'm sure TWC is going to do what they can to maximize their profit, but its not always them that makes the restrictions, just like its generally not them that require you to buy package deal for channels, its the people providing the channels ... that want to say they've sold just as many 'cooking network' subscriptions as HBO ... so advertisers think advertising on the cooking network is worth what they are being charged.

        • by PRMan (959735)

          The content producers have required contractual obligations by companies like TWC that prevent them from doing things like making it useful!!!

          FTFY

        • by Dynedain (141758)

          TWC is big enough that they can play hardball with the content providers to the benefit of their subscribers..

          The reality is that since Time-Warner Cable IS A CONTENT PROVIDER they have very little incentive to do so, and instead have every temptation to stifle competitive content generation and distribution.

          • by Thordain (263078)

            Time Warner Cable is no longer a subsidiary of Time Warner, Inc. They continue to use the name as part of the agreement created when the companies separated. Part of the big drive between the separation was that being both an operator and a content creator was seen as a conflict of interest with the shareholders.

        • by mattack2 (1165421)

          Do you know how much effort went into just getting the legal OK for TWC to give you a DVR

          [citation needed] regarding a DVR that exists in your home. That seems like it would fall under the Sony/Universal VCR case.

          (Now, the 'DVR that really exists at the cable company' and streaming/copying BETWEEN DVRs, I realize there are legal issues.)

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Really? You don't get it?
         
        Advertising. To sell ad space, they need to be able to promise N amount of eyeballs for time period X. They can't do that unless they restrict how and when their content is seen. Which is why they are losing viewers--- more and more often, people feel like they should be able to watch whatever they want, whenever they want.

    • From http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9209580/Apple_s_new_App_Store_rules_affect_Amazon_s_Kindle [computerworld.com]

      "Apple does require that if a publisher chooses to sell a digital subscription separately outside of the app, that same subscription offer must be made available, at the same price or less, to customers who wish to subscribe from within the app," Apple's statement read.
      "Apple processes all payments, keeping the same 30% share that it does today for other In-App Purchases," the company said.

      Later Tuesday, Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller confirmed that those rules apply not only to newspaper and magazine publishers, but also to content sellers like Amazon.com, which offers a Kindle app for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad.

      So now Apple will demand 30% of your internet and cable bill or pull this App?

      • by dwightk (415372)

        hmm, seems like you, like many /.ers misunderstand how this works.

        They would have to put an option to subscribe in the app and if you did Apple would take 30%. If you continued subscribing in the usual manner Apple would get nothing (beyond 30% of the cost of the app if there is one)

        Maybe TimeWarner made a deal with apple and will be exempt.

        Maybe they are trying to get this app out there so their customers will complain to Apple after the app is taken down in June.

        I know I would love to have Apple strong ar

        • by Anonymous Coward

          I know I would love to have Apple strong arming Time Warner when it comes to billing us.

          Really sure about that? Are you really, really sure you want a scenario where the ultimate and most likely conclusion goes to the tune of "Apple-Time Warner"?

          • by HTH NE1 (675604)

            the ultimate and most likely conclusion goes to the tune of "Apple-Time Warner"?

            I doubt Apple would willingly hyphenate with anyone.

    • by Gilmoure (18428)

      I had a similar setup with an El Gato EyeTV tuner plugged into my Mac Mini AV server. It could stream live and recorded shows to my iphone and I could browse channels from the iphone. Cool thing was it worked over 3G as well. I was 30 miles away, in town and brought up CNN at lunch. Once it buffered, was smooth steady stream.

      Daughter would use this setup to watch tv up in her room (just has computer with access to family iTunes library). With the iPad doing this, as well as now being able to access shared i

    • Uh, then who cares?

      In theory you're right. In practice, people will set up a VPN so that your mobile device thinks it's at home no matter where it really is.

    • by microbee (682094)

      But you can HDMI it to your TV! Watching directly on the TV is so 20 century.

    • Re:uh (Score:4, Interesting)

      by DeadboltX (751907) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @08:03PM (#35498454)
      While I agree that the app would be immensely more useful if you could use it over 3G or on the free WiFi at Starbucks or at my friends house, I also believe that this app still holds a place for usefulness.

      If your house doesn't have enough TVs for everyone and you all want to watch something different then this will come in handy. You can now watch TV while cooking in the kitchen without buying one of those little counter top TVs. You can go outside for a smoke break without missing any of 'the game.' You can watch TV on your patio while BBQing or supervising the kids while they swim in the pool. You can prop it up on your desk in your home office so you can watch while you work.

      There are all sorts of places in and around a home that don't normally have TV access. If anything this could be a reasonable argument to a spouse or parent for justifying getting one "But mom, it's a TV too!"
      • If your house doesn't have enough TVs for everyone and you all want to watch something different then this will come in handy.

        A 50" state-of-the-art TV costs as much as an iPad. If you don't have enough TVs, this seems like an poor solution for all but the very most fringe cases.

      • by rgviza (1303161)

        You could always just jailbreak the ipad, use tcpdump to find out where the connections are being made and what ports, then modify the hosts file on the iPad to point to your firewall, set up port forwarding on your firewall and forward the ports to the actual server that is serving the streams.

        Then you could use your iPad from anywhere to watch TWC. You might need to do some creative routing to watch from within your house tho...

    • Doesn't the Comcast Xfinity App do this?
    • because I can flip over to the news on the iPad while outdoors reading or the like. I can have it running in the kitchen when cooking, even turn it on in the morning in the bathroom while shaving or the like. In short, anywhere where it would be nice to have a TV but I am not willing to buy one. I looked into putting a TV behind the bathroom mirror but decided against it from a cost stand point. I do not have a computer or TV in the bedroom but an infrequent use item like the iPad might get a pass.

      Call me o

  • by LostCluster (625375) * on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:15PM (#35496692)

    Watching your TV content outside the home has always been crippled by legal agreements between the content owners and distributors. See, if TV was available on the web without restriction, they wouldn't be able to charge the bar and restaurant owners the high per-TV rates they do now. So we're stuck with a fancy iPad app that turns your iPad into a small TV but only when you're on your home WiFi. Sure it could work over 3G, but that's not a deal Time Warner Cable wants to write... and by doing so may be protecting the space from somebody who does want to do such a deal.

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      Bars and restaurants have not heard of netflix?

      • by spidrw (868429)
        Guaranteed that somewhere in the Netflix T&C there is a clause about public use. Just like with cable/satellite companies.
      • by Pieroxy (222434)

        Can you watch a live football game on netflix?

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          No, but they are on OTA tv. That is even cheaper than netflix, it is free!

          • It is free on Zattoo as well but delayed by I think 20 sec. The experience of watching a game live (e.g. soccer in Europe) is usually ruined when the whole neighborhood starts screaming while the players are still 20 meters away from the goal.
          • by BitZtream (692029)

            And its illegal to use OTA for public display of sporting events. I realize sports aren't big to slashdot users, but if you've ever watched any major sporting event like a NFL or MLB game, or a big race ... the first thing you hear and see is a 'no rebroadcasting without permission'.

            • by h4rr4r (612664)

              They can say anything they like that does not make it true. How is watching it while it is playing rebroadcasting?

              Do they plan on coming after everyone with a tivo as well?

              • They can say anything they like that does not make it true. How is watching it while it is playing rebroadcasting?

                Because it's a public performance. It doesn't matter how you try to rearrange the words, it's illegal.

                • by h4rr4r (612664)

                  Which is not rebroadcasting at all. That is a ban on public performance, which is quite different. I thought that had to do with the size of the screen anyway.

            • And its illegal to use OTA for public display of sporting events. I realize sports aren't big to slashdot users, but if you've ever watched any major sporting event like a NFL or MLB game, or a big race ... the first thing you hear and see is a 'no rebroadcasting without permission'.

              No, it's not. First, showing it isn't rebroadcasting.

              Second, the ban on public display is only for screen sizes of 55" and greater. Don't you remember the fuss about churches being told that 55" screens were too big for watching the superbowl [msnbc.com]?

              Places are prohibited from charging admission to watch the Super Bowl, and the law prevents them from showing the game on a TV bigger than 55 inches.

              • And its illegal to use OTA for public display of sporting events. I realize sports aren't big to slashdot users, but if you've ever watched any major sporting event like a NFL or MLB game, or a big race ... the first thing you hear and see is a 'no rebroadcasting without permission'.

                No, it's not. First, showing it isn't rebroadcasting.

                Second, the ban on public display is only for screen sizes of 55" and greater. Don't you remember the fuss about churches being told that 55" screens were too big for watching the superbowl [msnbc.com]?

                Places are prohibited from charging admission to watch the Super Bowl, and the law prevents them from showing the game on a TV bigger than 55 inches.

                That rule has been done away with now b/c of all the flack they got from coming down on church parties. It's been legal for the past 2-3 years.

                • by tomhudson (43916)

                  And its illegal to use OTA for public display of sporting events. I realize sports aren't big to slashdot users, but if you've ever watched any major sporting event like a NFL or MLB game, or a big race ... the first thing you hear and see is a 'no rebroadcasting without permission'.

                  No, it's not. First, showing it isn't rebroadcasting.

                  Second, the ban on public display is only for screen sizes of 55" and greater. Don't you remember the fuss about churches being told that 55" screens were too big for watching the superbowl [msnbc.com]?

                  Places are prohibited from charging admission to watch the Super Bowl, and the law prevents them from showing the game on a TV bigger than 55 inches.

                  That rule has been done away with now b/c of all the flack they got from coming down on church parties. It's been legal for the past 2-3 years.

                  [citation needed]

                  After all, I was kind enough to provide links in my original comment, and I'd love to learn that I'm wrong, and that someone actually did something middling reasonable :-)

    • by Pieroxy (222434) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:26PM (#35496828) Homepage

      Whan you are a content distributor and you do so much to make sure your viewers cannot view your content, there must be something wrong.

      • I think we'll literally have to wait until the executives of these companies retire or die so that someone who gets it can take over and stop pretending it's 1985.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        The reason for the limitations has nothing to do with restricting their viewers, and everything to do with preventing people who do not subscribe to their service from freeloading. It's been proven time and again that you have to lock this shit down, or people will abuse it and ruin it for everyone. There are a hell of a lot of people who read the headline and thought they'd be getting something for nothing.
      • by BitZtream (692029)

        Its the content producers that prevent it from happening, not the distributors ... which is still just as retarded.

        But ... much like counting netflix against your bandwidth usage, but not their own services, it also costs TWC more money to pipe video out onto the internet than it does to pipe it to their own network ... just like long distance costs providers more than local calls.

    • by HTH NE1 (675604)

      So we're stuck with a fancy iPad app that turns your iPad into a small TV but only when you're on your home WiFi. Sure it could work over 3G, but that's not a deal Time Warner Cable wants to write...

      VPN?

  • You mean that dumb thing that requires you to be around when they air the program? This is 2011, that crap has to go. I would rather not watch a program that deal with that garbage.

  • I've been watching extensive coverage of the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami on NHK's app. CNN lets you watch live TV as well....

  • I've been using a Slingbox [slingbox.com] for years. It streams your TV feed over the Net. You can even use it to control your TiVo, and change channels remotely.

    Great technology for those who must have access to their boob tube when away from home.
    • by DWMorse (1816016)
      Technically piracy, in the eyes of the companies. But an equally fantastic alternative to actual piracy.
    • I've been using a Slingbox [slingbox.com] for years. It streams your TV feed over the Net. You can even use it to control your TiVo, and change channels remotely. Great technology for those who must have access to their boob tube when away from home.

      OrbLive from Orb.com does the same. For Live tv it is not bad, even over 3G.

    • by HTH NE1 (675604)

      I was an early adopter of Slingbox. Now my Slingbox is unsupported by the current software. I can only use it with obsolete PC binaries.

  • In Which Case (Score:4, Insightful)

    by techsoldaten (309296) on Tuesday March 15, 2011 @05:47PM (#35497084) Journal

    In which case, I can use my iPad to watch live TV while I am watching live TV on my TV. It's like picture in picture that I can actually hold and it doesn't stop me from using picture in picture AGAIN while I am watching.

    The drawback is that this means no more beating off to Telemundo with the sound off, my hands are going to be too busy flipping around the iPad while I work the remote to capture the money scenes on the DVR and watch them in slomo.

    Next we NEED a DVR app for the iPad.

  • What a bunch of dinosaurs.
  • Is this really something new?
  • solution anyone?
  • I wonder how they're planning on getting around Apple's requirement that subscription services available through an app have the option to use In App Purchase.
    • by BitZtream (692029)

      The requirement is that if you allow online signups, you need to have in app signups as well.

      My cable company doesn't allow online signups (yet, there was talk in the data center about allowing any unrecognized cable modem to be configured when connected to allow access/redirection to a signup page, but that never happened).

      Since you can't signup online, Apple's rule doesn't apply.

  • I mean - that's about what they're limiting it to, anyway, aren't they? Oh, I guess you already have to have video form them, so why bother...

    So.. why bother?

  • How about Time Warner spends its time and money on improving its crappy upload speed and rolling out IPv6 instead?

  • Sorry to spoil your American Pride: but I as a customer can use the application YELO to watch live Video on my iPad. ONLY with my Telenet account and ONLY at places that have Telenet as their provider. (My Home , Some customers , the Central Train station in Antwerp).

    (Telenet is one of the Flemish cable companies.)

  • 1) Only on an iPad- no other tablet, brand, or type of machine.
    2) Which means you probably also have to have a computer and one that can run iTunes (since that is used for install and updates).
    3) And you have to have Time Warner cable TV service.
    4) And only Time Warner Internet service.
    5) And be on the IP address registered to you.
    6) And only 30 channels.

    How incredibly thoughtful, open, and flexible that is! What next? Require they watch all the commercials too... ooops....

    Well, at least it is a step in t

  • Can they write an App that will run on my Win 7 or Linux based HTPC that will play live TV across their IP network? That would be something I could use.
  • Even then, it only works in the home, when the iPad is connected to the company's cable modem via a Wi-Fi router

    It also must be line of sight to your TV. It uses the iPad's new camera to "beam" a signal from your TV to your iPad.

  • But I wish they had the same app in a generic browser or at least a pc/linux/android aswell. Possible uses could include not having to miss a ball game because the wife wants to watch dancing with the stars (not everyone has 2 hdtv's). Or many times I want to watch tv in bed so I do the hulu thing. But it would be nice to see live local news in bed. It seems that al jazeera is the only streaming news source these days. PLEASE correct me if I'm wrong, I would love to find a free streaming local station servi
  • While it's not precisely the same thing, DISH Network's Sling Adapter allows users to watch anything recorded on the DVR, or to tune the DVR and watch live TV, on their PC (including OS X), iPad, or iPhone, regardless of their location (provided there's adequate bandwidth). It's $100 and has no service fee.

    Using it within my house is great, I can carry my iPad around the house or the yard while watching TV. So far, attempts to use hotel wifi when I'm away have been a bust, the connections I've gotten just a

  • Just downloaded it on my fiances iPad2. I either get a "service not available" or when I sign on the application keeps saying it is signing on but never goes past that.
  • Time Warner Cable March 16 slashed the number of channels available for live streaming on the Apple iPad — less than 24 hours after launching the TV Everywhere app.

    http://www.homemediamagazine.com/electronic-delivery/time-warner-cable-cuts-ipad-live-tv-access-50-23348 [homemediamagazine.com]

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