The movies and TV lineup for Google Play received a bump in the right direction this morning when Google announced that they would start selling/renting 600 titles from Twentieth Century Fox. TV shows like Family Guy, Glee, and Modern Family all make the cut along with movies like Black Swan, X-Men and Ice Age. Oh, and remember Prometheus? To help kickstart this new deal, you will be able to buy Prometheus 3 weeks ahead of its Blu-ray, DVD and video-on-demand release.
+1 to that news. Time to put the Nexus Q to work.
Today, Google pushed out updated versions of the Nexus Q, YouTube, and Play Movies & TV applications. For the Q app, it now supports Android devices running 2.3.3+ which should make Gingerbread owners a bit happier once they receive their Nexus Q in the mail. As for the YouTube app, it has now spread Nexus Q support for Android 4.0 devices and earlier, as well as as allowing earlier versions of Android to use the app as a remote to play videos on other devices. Lastly, the Play Movies & TV app has been beefed up with faster downloads and a playback fix which plagued a few LG devices.
Go grab the updates in Google Play and enjoy your content to the fullest extent.
Nexus Q | YouTube | Movies & TV
After the update to the Movies application back when Google I/O was taking place this year, Google began allowing for rooted devices (previously blocked from playback) to stream content. We know in the beginning that Google had to make sure the publishers felt their content was safe and wouldn’t be copied, but it looks like Google may have convinced them that rooted users aren’t exactly the problem.
Whatever did officially happen, users are very happy and everyone can now enjoy their Google Play Movies and TV shows with no more interruptions. Thanks, Google.
Many of Google’s applications are receiving major updates starting today. Maps now has the ability to store offline data, which means no more worrying about having to rely on a steady data connection to have in-depth and highly detailed maps wherever you are. Chrome, as we suspected earlier last week, has officially dropped its Beta tag. Google+ was a main point in their I/O presentation, with its new “Party Mode” and the ability to view feeds all from your notification bar in Jelly Bean. They also released the special tablet UI.
YouTube has received a complete UI overhaul, with navigation now happening on the left side of the screen and the ability to download videos over WiFi in the background for smooth playback while you’re on the go. Google’s Books app has received a few new features and you can now tap the top corner of a page to set a bookmark, along with video and audio playback when they’re embedded in the books.
Maps | Books | YouTube | Movies | Chrome | Google+
After confirming that the Nexus 7 is officially real and that another device called the Nexus Q is on the way, we noticed one other note from the Google Play addendum that we received. It mentions the following:
You understand that the Nexus Q currently supports only Google Play Music; Google Play Movies and TV; and YouTube, and that your use of those services is subject to the Google Play Terms of Service.
See anything new in that statement? “Google Play Movies and TV.” Currently, the Play store doesn’t sell or rent TV shows, but according to this addendum, they will shortly. The I/O day 1 keynote starts in just under an hour – we wouldn’t be surprised if TV shows are announced.
Motorola XOOM owners can now try and grab themselves Google Videos, but be warned, it really doesn’t seem to be working too well. We rented a movie on the web browser, but the application is just displaying a server error. So is Google in the process of testing this, or have they released a broken app? Go ahead and try downloading, but definitely let us know in the comments section if it’s broken or working for you.
It’s also still looking as though it will not work for rooted XOOMs. But try it just to make sure.
This story on how rooted Android devices are being blocked from watching Google Movies seemed to pick up a lot of steam over the weekend, but it’s funny because @p3droid and I talked for a couple of hours about this on Twitter just after Google I/O got done almost 2 weeks ago (another reason to follow us!). We both run rooted XOOMs and manually upgraded to 3.1, but were greeted with the nasty “Failed to fetch license” error that you are seeing above from the Android Market support pages. We even thought we had found a fix which involved upgrading and then deleting su and Superuser.apk, but that ended up not working for everyone. In fact, I installed 100% stock images from Motorola on my device, accepted the OTA update and still cannot access movies.
So my thoughts on this are, “this sucks, but is not unexpected.” We all know how long it has taken Netflix to get past their security fears with Android, so I can only imagine how those negotiations went down when Google asked movie companies directly for permission to sell their titles. And I would hope Android’s security reputation isn’t also the reason that they have been unable to secure contracts to sell music, but wouldn’t be surprised.
This new wave of anti-root on Android is a little unsettling, especially since many of us joined this army because we loved the idea of having total control. But in the end, it’s all a business and rooted users seem to be looked at as evil hackers and thieves these days, so I’m afraid this is only the beginning.
Cheers to everyone who sent this!
Today’s Google I/O keynote was filled all sorts of good news, but they really took some major steps towards turning our Android devices into media beasts. They launched a new Movies section in the Market which allows you to rent them for as little as $1.99 and keep them for up to 30 days. Well, you can keep it for 30 days, but once you start watching it you only have 24 hours to finish it.
Currently, movies can only be rented and watched through your PC browser, but once the Motorola XOOM is updated to version 3.1, it will also give you the option to rent. Phone support will come at a later date.
Start renting movies here: https://market.android.com/movies
More on the keynote, check out the live blog we ran.