I’m so pumped for this. Last year, while helping out some of the PLDT Telpad guys for a project, they mentioned that they would be bringing in some sort of “Netflix-like” service. For those unfamiliar, Netflix is an on-demand online video streaming service in the US. It used to be that videos were delivered via physical discs to your home address but since the Internet has been blowing our minds with better speeds as the years pass, bandwidth became the main delivery method.
I was excited!
Fast forward to 2013 and I get invited to lunch with Sherwin dela Cruz, a fellow geek I had met during the Samsung-Tradeport partnership for the Blupass movie delivery service. Finally, we have our very own on-demand movie streaming service in the Philippines and for PHP 60.00 per movie, this is very competitive vs piracy.
Here are the details:
The streaming service is at ClickPlay.PH. They charge PHP 60.00 for movies. Some titles will be pegged at a higher cost.
Right now they have about 70++ titles which will be bumped up to 200++ in the following months. Regarding movies and series availability, this has to do more with the big TV networks abroad making the content available locally. I give my hats off to the folks at ClickPlay for being able to continuously negotiate for more and more titles, making them available at even cheaper rates compared to iTunes. This is no easy feat.
As of now, payment options include Paypal and credit card. More easy-access options available soon. They just launched.
For now you will be able to access the HTML5 site and stream. You will need Microsoft Silverlight (this is a DRM issue with the networks). The apps for mobile are coming. Once you rent a title, you will need to watch it within 30 days. From the moment you start watching, you can play it an unlimited number of times for 48 hours.
There is a subscription model coming soon. In the meantime, if you are a PLDT Fibr subscriber, you can avail of the packages for free! Here they are:
8mbps -3 movies per month
20mbps -4 movies per month
50mbps -10 movies per month
100mbps -20 movies per month
All existing customers come pre-registered (using their account# and telephone # as the username and password). This is valid till March 31, 2013.
This is Nokia’s entry-level “206″ model that costs PHP 2,850. If you know anyone that needs an updated feature phone for calls and text and yeah a bit of Facebook, this is something you can recommend.
That’s all folks!
• Imaging technology that optimizes photos taken with its 1.3MP camera for sharing on Facebook
• A comprehensive social and mobile entertainment package with eBuddy Chat and a gift pack of 10 free, premium content items.
• Exclusive Easy Swap technology that enables consumers to change SIM cards without having to turn off the device.
• The Nokia 206 remember the settings of up to five SIM cards making it easy to switch between making calls or using the Internet
• An impressive standby time of up to 28 days.
UPDATE II: If you own a Mac and have problems authenticating your installation (your valid serial number isn’t working after trying to authenticate) or you are getting a Sorry, there was a problem while trying to connect to your account. (Error code:0×80000003) error, this has to do with the region settings. Go to System Preferences –> Language and Text –> then set your region to USA and not Philippines.
UPDATE: OK here’s the thing. If you install this on a Mac, you will get the Office 2011 version and not 2013. This is because the 2013 version is still in the works but as soon as it comes out, it will become free for Mac users to upgrade. FYI!
Exciting news today from Microsoft. Rather than launching separate versions of the Microsoft Office 2013 for both the Macintosh and the PC, the guys from Redmond are pricing a 10-computer install pack for PHP 3,499. This applies to Macs and PC’s in your home bundle. The new version of Office supports touch screen commands for Windows 8 devices and adds a lot of cloud as well as social components together with strong integration with Facebook and LinkedIn.
The local startup scene has been shaking lately with the arrival of Kalibrr. Founded by Paul Rivera, Kalibrr aims develop the skills of call center applicants even BEFORE they apply for a job. Now that’s a true incubator. I’ve had the chance to interview the folks and find out more about this amazing startup. Here is a full list of their awesome team.
Kalibrr Founder and CEO Paul Rivera witnessed the Philippines’ skills gap firsthand at a BPO company he founded here in 2007. Prior to this,He found that while there are literally thousands of BPO jobs available in the country, many educated Filipinos still do not qualify for them because they lack the necessary skills for the job. He saw Kalibrr as an opportunity to not just close this skills gap, but to also provide thousands of Filipinos the means to go after a job that will allow them to change their future.
Kalibrr was founded in January 2012.
Social media! There’s social media everywhere! Once considered a beautiful thing, it comes as no surprise that pundits proclaim how the social web is spouting out a lot of noise pollution. Sure, Facebook and Twitter make our lives more interesting, but it’s the really useful services like Audible, Gazelle and Stamps (dot com) that bring the wonders of the web to life. As such, finding similar kinds of services can be a b*tch. But that also means that once you find them, amazing stuff happens.
Take Updater for instance. Updater is the online home for new-movers. if we have Audible for your commute, Gazelle for selling used gadgets and Stamps for printing your own stamps, Updater is the web service that helps make moving homes so much easier. If you’re undergoing a change of address, Updater does a number of things to make your move transition smoothly. For one, it manages your delivery addresses and informs people and institutions that forward bills to you of your new location. So rather than doing it yourself, which can get rather tedious, Updater handles it all like a personal concierge. The service also helps you scout out for relevant utility providers in your new area such as cable and phone service providers.
All this is done in web-friendly To Do list style so everything is kept organized.
UPDATE: If you’re interested in Lenovo’s P-series (with long life battery) do check out the Lenovo P770.
If you’re a close follower of Lenovo’s release schedule for phones, you’ll notice that they churn out about four or five units a quarter. At the recent CES, Lenovo unveiled five new phones for Q1 2013. We have one of these units now. The Ideaphone S720 is the perfect choice if you’re looking for a sub 10k Android device with a 4.5″ screen.
They’re everywhere. Zalora (and sister company Lazada) have outbid most other brands in Google Adsense. Heck, you’re probably seeing a Zalora or Lazada ad right now to your right. As someone who’s been watching their parent company, Rocket Internet grow in the Philippines for quite some time, Zalora has been in the spotlight as one of the most aggressive online sellers in the country to date.
Finally, the PS3 exclusive, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is now available locally via everyone’s favorite Datablitz. Ni No Kuni is a refreshing (and absolutely beautiful) revisit to classic Japanese RPG’s. If you want over 40 hours of amazing gaming bliss, this will only set you back by PHP 2,500.00. It’s very worth it.
Today, Kobe Bryant announced via his Facebook page his partnership with Lenovo. Simply put, he said that “Lenovo has some cool tech. I’m excited to be partnering with them in Asia. Stay tuned! Mamba Out” The Asian partnership seems to cover both China and Manila.
Alongside the announcement is a photo of the flagship K900, sporting a 5.5″ IPS screen with a slim 9mm profile. last year when we went to Xiamen to visit the Lenovo factory, we were given a macro view of the manufacturer’s vision which includes their tagline “For those who do.” According to Kobe, “I am excited to partner with a market-leader like Lenovo … I work to pursue excellence in all that I do, and I believe that Lenovo shares that brand DNA and is going to set itself apart as a technological leader for smartphones across Asia.”
Finally, HTC has their new 5″ Butterfly available in several concept stores around the Philippines.
The Butterfly is a bit late in the game, with other smartphone manufacturers already making waves with their own 5″ variant. Underground, the Butterfly is touted to directly compete with the iPhone 5 but to be honest this phone really competes with other Android devices sporting 5″ screens and up. The Butterfly’s main selling point is the screen package: protective Corning Gorilla Glass 2 with a crisp 1080p full HD display that does 440 pixels per inch. So yes, it’s vibrant and well protected from drops.
On iOS, you can get the original trilogy for free. If you pay a dollar per game, you get the extra levels and block ads. I’m not sure why you need to shell out 2,000% more for the same game on the console.
Angry Birds for the PS3 is available on PSN for USD $39.99