5 Ways Streaming Movies Online Will Change Your Life

Renting a DVD to watch a movie may soon become a thing of the past as more and more movie buffs discover the many benefits of streaming movies online. One of the major DVD-rental businesses lost more than 800,000 subscribers in a three-month period, Fox News reports, and other subscribers are predicted to follow suit. Technology analyst Rob Enderle told reporters, “The future is clearly streaming now – it’s only a matter of time before all disk-based media becomes obsolete.”

This is not strange when you look at these five ways streaming movies will change your life:

1. Save time. Trekking to the video store or rental box, finding parking and then searching the aisles for your favorite titles may not take a phenomenal amount of effort, but it takes more than plopping down on your couch and pressing a button to see the same movies online.

2. Save money. The cost of renting a DVD movie can be ridiculously high. True, it’s not the double digits you now pay to see a movie in the theater, but it can also come with late fees that can add up quickly. Movie streaming subscriptions can offer unlimited viewing for a single fee or a cost per movie that is typically less expensive than renting a DVD.

3. Avoid frustration. Watching movies online means the available titles are always available. You are no longer faced with an empty DVD case waiting for another user to return the flick, nor are you stuck with damaged or poor-quality DVDs. Streaming technology offers a crisp, clear picture with enhanced digital sound to match.

4. Receive instant gratification. Technology has improved greatly over the years, with quicker downloads and easier use than ever before. Besides, the online movies have yet to include the litany of trailers or even ads now crammed at the beginning of many DVDs. That alone is worth checking it out.

5. Get a jumpstart on the future. You will already have a head start on the new wave of watching movies rather than be irate or confused when DVDs become yet more expensive and tougher to find.

So how do you do it? Most new TVs and DVD players already have an internet connection built-in. If not, you can buy a DVD player with the capability or a relatively inexpensive device designed specifically to stream online content to your TV. Just because technology is advanced, it does not mean it is difficult or expensive to obtain or hard to use. Streaming movies can be quick, easy and full of benefits – and the money you save can go for popcorn.

Which Player Is Better for Streaming Movies and TV – The Apple TV Vs the Roku LT

Is Apple or Roku the Better Choice for Streaming Movies

The two most recommended players for streaming movies right now are Apple TV and Roku boxes. So, the obvious question one might ask is; which one should I buy?

This question is a little difficult to answer because of recent additions to the Apple TV, namely the Hulu Plus application and Air Play Mirroring. Before the new Apple TV add-ons the Roku LT was the easy pick because it offered much more content for half the price.

Which player is better when it comes to streaming movies and online media content? Let’s examine the pros and cons of each one.

Streaming Movies and More with the Roku LT

The content sources of the Roku LT are really fantastic. Also, many of the features of this little box are just a bit better than their competitors. The Roku LT interface is extremely simple and very user-friendly with a channel layout that can be easily customized by the user and includes a simple uncluttered remote control. The Home Screen is quite easy to navigate and the Channel Store is loaded with choices. The fact that the Channel Store is separate from the Home Screen makes it easier to view all the available streaming movies and content without overcrowding the Home Screen.

Of all their models the Roku LT is without a doubt the best deal. If for some reason it is not available, take a look at the Roku HD. It is essentially the same, but costs $10.00 more.

What makes the Roku line-up of streaming players so impressive is what they do best, and that is to seamlessly stream quality content. Roku owners have no need to buy Bluetooth remotes, pay extra for USB ports or MicroSD card slots or 1080p. Although the Roku LT is limited to 720p, the Roku 2 XS model will stream 1080p video. The difference between 720p and 1080p is usually indistinguishable to most people.

Constant improvements and updates have taken the once simple Apple TV from being not much more than a glorified player for Netflix to being the best in the game for streaming movies and TV. The image above is an example of the larger cover art from the Apple TV. Movie ratings and recommendations from Rotten Tomatoes and Genius are nice features that go along nicely with the easy to use navigation. However it does cost twice as much as the Roku LT.

If you are a Mac user and a music lover, AirPlay allows you to stream music along with videos and photographs from any of your iPad, iPhone or iPod devices. Unlike the Roku LT, Apple TV doesn’t support Pandora, but you can easily access and stream it from any of the iOS devices.

Another plus is the AirPlay Mirroring which is built right into the Mountain Lion OS. This is a handy feature, only if you have a newer Mac that allows you to stream anything that appears on your computer screen, including flash and/or free Hulu video wirelessly directly to the TV.

Don’t forget iTunes. Along with streaming movies and TV, Apple TV also has the ability to stream videos and music from iTunes. You can also sign up for iTunes Match, which costs $25.00 a year, and stores all your music for you so there is no worrying about storage space for your music at all.

Roku users will also have the same option with the upcoming launch of the Amazon Cloud Player application.

Obviously if you are already a user of Apple products their player is going to a lot more appeal because you already speak the language and from that perspective it is a pretty easy choice.

Which Player is the Better Choice for Streaming Movies and TV?

Simply put: if you are already a fan of Apple the choice is easy, buy the Apple TV. If you are not already committed to Apple products, get the Roku LT.

The Roku LT is much less expensive and also has more available options as far as content is concerned. However the Apple TV is a little more user-friendly, and the newly added Hulu Plus is helping the Apple TV narrow the content gap.

Which One is the Better Choice for:

Current Apple Users: the Apple TV

Price: Roku LT

Better Content: Roku LT

Better Interface: the Apple TV

Non-HD TV: Roku LT

When all is said and done, the Roku LT has the advantage with those that are not Apple fans, because of its value. Although the Roku LT is not at all difficult to use, those with less technical expertise may want to opt for the easier to use Apple TV.

Steps for Adding Sound to Flash Movie

  1. Choose the sound from the sound drop-down menu. Once a sound is selected the property inspector will display the attributes of the file you selected. That includes sample rates,bit depth etc. The sound you selected will be the sound that is cued when flash plays the currently selected key frame.
  2. Create a new layer and name it something like sound. This is not an important step but it will help you to keep individual sound on separate layers in your movie. Each layer name can be a title that describes the sound it contains. And it is to position sounds when they are independent of other movie elements. The adobe flash 8 player can now support up to 32 tracks of audio. This means you can use flash to play 32 sounds simultaneously.
  3. Click the layer where you want to start playing the sound and then insert a key frame. For that select insert>timeline>key frame and before this you have to import the sound file in to the library. Check it in the property inspector (ctrl+f3).
  4. Choose the sound from the sound drop-down menu. Once a sound is selected the property inspector will display the attributes of the file you selected. That includes sample rates,bit depth etc. The sound you selected will be the sound that is cued when flash plays the currently selected key frame.
  5. To add the default pan effect select an option from the Effect drop-down menu or click the edit button to create a custom volume or pan envelope.
  6. Select option from the Sync drop-down menu.In general use for shorter sounds that you want to be played in time with a visual event in your movie,for example a thud sound of cartoon character falling down. Event sounds will play in their entirety until they are stopped or the sound ends. Use the stream sync if you want flash to force the movie animation to lock playback with sound file.

Unlike event sound stream sound will play only through the number of frames that occupy in the timeline. You must add frames to accommodate the length of a stream sound. Also if you plan to use an mp3 file as a stream sound you must recompress the file within flash before publishing your movie

Select the following repeat option for the sound.

a) Select repeat and then enter 1 in the adjacent field or leave the field blank. This will play the sound only once.

b) Select repeat and enter a number between 0 and 65535 in the adjacent field, the sound will repeat the number of times that you specify

c) Select loop. The sound will repeat continuously until it is stopped at different key frame or silenced via Actionscript