TiVo / VOIP / YouTube / Google Earth / Pandora
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TiVo Internet Access
TiVo, the most popular personal video recorder, added new features this year that
made it possible for users to exchange shows with other users and schedule recordings
remotely online. TiVo now says it is also working to allow movies and music from the
Internet to be downloaded to TiVo, similar to how pay-per-view is offered by cable
and satellite providers.
Voice Over IP (VOIP), the technology for using a standard phone across the Internet,
more than doubled its subscriber base this year. Reasons? Calls to other VOIP users
are typically free anywhere in the world, while calls to and from traditional land
line phones or cell phones cost a few pennies a minute. Typically, VOIP plans cost $25
a month for unlimited dialing, about half of what local phone operators charge.
Before the launch of YouTube in 2005, there were few easy methods available for
ordinary computer users who wanted to post videos online. YouTube made it possible
for anyone with an Internet connection to post a video that a worldwide audience
could watch within a few minutes. In November 2006, Google purchased YouTube for
$1.65 billion in Google stock. As of May 2010, YouTube was serving more than two
billion videos a day to over 100 million viewers, which is nearly double the prime-time
audience of all three major U.S. television networks combined.
The release of Google Earth in June 2005 to the public caused a more than tenfold increase
in media coverage on virtual globes, driving public interest in geospatial technologies and
applications. Google Earth lets you "fly" anywhere on Earth to view satellite imagery, maps,
terrain, 3D buildings, and from galaxies in outer space to the canyons of the ocean.
Pandora Radio was launched July 21, 2005. The Internet radio service plays musical selections
of a certain genre based on the user's artist selections. On July 11, 2008, Pandora started
launching mobile versions of their software. By January 2011, Pandora had 80 million users, and
by April 2013, they surpassed 200 million users.