YouTube Joins Binge On After T-Mobile Changes Program for Video Providers

Back in December, YouTube decided that it wasn’t happy with T-Mobile’s Binge On video service and raised some important questions, partly because T-Mobile was being ultra sneaky about how it worked, but also because T-Mobile was throttling their streams even though they weren’t participating. T-Mobile’s CEO John Legere threw a couple of big, embarrassing fits about YouTube’s concerns, because apparently, no one is allowed to question pink Batman. Legere just couldn’t see how anyone could be offended by what his company was doing with Binge On, assuming that those with concerns all had some sort of agenda.

As it turns out, YouTube (and the rest of us who had issues with Binge On) really just wanted the program to be more transparent and not do sneaky things, like throttle the companies who were not choosing to participate or make it difficult for people to opt-out. Funny how that’s a bad thing, especially to the CEO of a company who has spent the past few years calling out his competitors for not being open and upfront about policies or sales programs.

Today, after some obvious back-room negotiations took place between T-Mobile and YouTube, the two companies have co-announced that YouTube (and Google Play Movies & TV) will join Binge On, thanks to some new changes.  (more…)

First Batch of YouTube Red Originals Now Available for Viewing

YouTube launched its first batch of YouTube Red Originals this morning, a set of movies and shows that can only be viewed if you are subscribed to YouTube Red. Taking a few of its most popular creators, YouTube set out to take on the likes of Netflix and Amazon, offering original content that can only be viewed in one place. However, with the first batch of shows and movies, don’t expect to see anything on par with House of Cards or Orange is the New Black. (more…)

T-Mobile Adds 14 Services to Binge On, Responds to “Throttling” Concerns

This morning, T-Mobile and its CEO, John Legere, had a whole bunch things to say about their Binge On video service. Not only did they announce a handful of new partners for Binge On, but Legere also addressed all of the recent “throttling” talk surrounding their “optimized” video streams.

Before we get into the throttling fun, the list of new partners includes A&E, Lifetime, HISTORY, PlayStation Vue, Tennis Channel Anywhere, FuboTV, Kidoodle TV, Curiosity Stream, Fandor, Newsy, ODK Media, Lifetime Movie Club, and FYI. There should be 14 in total that went live today, which brings Binge On’s partner list up to 38.

OK, now to the interesting stuff.  (more…)

YouTube: T-Mobile is Throttling All Video Traffic, Regardless of Binge On Enrollment

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal, YouTube is calling out T-Mobile this week, claiming that the carrier is effectively throttling, or degrading, its network video traffic. Recently, T-Mobile announced Binge On, a service that allows customers to stream video from select providers without any associated data fees. Essentially, T-Mobile scales back the quality of the incoming video to 480p, relieving stress on the network, which allows the video data to not count against a customer’s monthly bill. However, according to a YouTube spokesperson, T-Mobile is degrading all incoming video regardless of network congestion, regardless of being a part of Binge On, and is not informing its customers of the action.  (more…)

Google Awakens the Force With Star Wars Themes for Apps, Includes Gmail and Maps

Because there was not already an over saturation of Star Wars crap for you to buy in stores, Google has launched Star Wars themes for your apps, just in case you needed more Force in your life. If you have a Google account, and use it for Gmail, Google Maps, YouTube, and other Google services, you can experience what the Light or Dark side have to offer their users.

To start, you will need to choose a side – Light or Dark. Once a side is chosen, you will begin to see Star Wars themes throughout many of Google’s applications, whether it is on an Android device or desktop computer. For example, I chose the Dark side, opened my Gmail, and I was greeted with a darkly colored Empire theme. In addition, if you open Google Maps, find your home, you should see a Death Star.  (more…)

YouTube Music Now Available for Android, Try it Free for 14 Days

YouTube Music is now available on Android and iOS (US only), bringing together a one-stop shop for all things music videos. Upon opening the app, you are shown suggestions, and after a single click on whatever you like, a station is created to cater music that you will hopefully enjoy. YouTube Music brings together the entire catalog of tunes found on the service, which is millions.

The app features an Audio-only mode, plus an Offline Mixtape mode that pre-downloads songs you will like for playback even when you are not connected to data. On the Home tab, you will find recommended tracks, plus added suggestions based on your already existing viewing habits. Other tabs include Popular or “Fire,” and a “Like” tab for tracks you have previously liked for easy rediscovery.  (more…)

YouTube on Android Now Does the VR Video Thing, Adds Cardboard Viewer Too

Google announced today that YouTube on Android now does VR video. Not only that, but if you own a Google Cardboard product, you can also view almost all videos through sort of a virtual movie theater like experience.

With VR in YouTube, Google is fully jumping on the current trend for video experiences, where creators try to “give you a sense of depth” and help you feel “like you’re actually there.” In order to experience them, all you need is Google Cardboard and a VR video (like the Hunger Games Experience or TOMS Shoes Giving Trip). Once you have Cardboard loaded up with one of those videos, you should be able to tap on the settings button in the top right corner to find a Cardboard option that will launch you into VR mode.  (more…)