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What’s New at Mohu: Dan Was Here

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What’s New at Mohu: Dan Was Here



A few weeks ago, Dan from our Quality Control team left Mohu to pursue a great new opportunity. Dan will be a hard one to forget — but that was probably all part of his plan.

 

You see, ever since Dan left, we’ve been finding little reminders of him everywhere. Under the coffee pot. In a stack of papers. Even in the Ladies Room. Like he was a creating his own secret Easter Egg hunt competition, Dan planted “DAN WAS HERE” cards all over the office. It has been awesome.

 
DANWASHERE
 

We would like to think he was inspired by the “Where will you hide your Mohu Leaf” question we ask customers. But the truth is, Dan’s game has inspired us to leave a lasting impression as well.

 

So we’re launching a new campaign in honor of Dan’s creativity. All around Mohu, right now, hidden in the cracks and crevices, are little green cards with our new slogan “Be Set Free”. If Mohuligans find a blue version of the card around the office, they win a prize.

 

It’s a fun little office game, yeah, but why “Be Set Free”?

Because we want to inspire people to throw off the chains of satellite contracts, the tyranny of cable monopolies, and the emptiness of overpriced content, and instead spend their money on the things they really value.

 

Simply put, we want everyone here at Mohu focused on helping set customers free. And because we want our customers to help spread the word too, if you buy an Indoor HDTV Antenna from Mohu, you might find a “Be Set Free” card in your box as well. (And who knows, you might find DAN WAS HERE card in there too…we have no idea where the next one will turn up.)

 

So Dan, if you’re out there reading this: thanks for the hard work, your time at Mohu, but most of all, for opening our eyes to the idea.

 

Be Set Free!

-The Mohuligans







Custom Home Theater Featuring a Mohu Indoor HDTV Antenna



Ikea Home Theater Center

In our experience, cord cutters are an industrious and tech-savvy crew. Definitely more DIY, than “whatever you say”.

 

That’s why when we see a cool home entertainment project — that happens to feature our very own Mohu Leaf Indoor HDTV Antenna — we gotta share it with you!

 

The fine folks over at IKEAHackers.net transformed IKEA furniture into a unique and modern looking home theater center. While the setup appears to be wireless at first glance, under further investigation, they’ve definitely cut the cord from cable.

 

For about $700, they created a fully functional (and great looking!) media center made from parts of IKEA furniture, plus some creativity, and a Mohu Leaf.

 

Check out the images below and click here for the full rundown on how to do-it-yourself!







Green TV? Cutting the Cord From Cable Box Energy Consumption



Social movements have symbols to rally around. Hippies had peace signs, Breast Cancer Awareness has pink ribbons and The Pirates of the Caribbean have the skull and crossbones (that’s real, right?).

 

So what’s the symbol for the ever growing cord-cutting movement? Let’s start with the color: green.

 

cut your tv's energy consumptionYes, green for all the cash you save without a cable bill, but also green for more environmentally friendly. You see, bulky cable DVR boxes suck up A LOT of energy.

 

How much? Possibly more than any appliance in your house! One HD DVR cable boxes uses an average of 446 kilowatt hours a year, more than a new energy-efficient refrigerator!

 

The problem is that these boxes basically run at fult-tilt 24/7. Even when they’re ‘off’, they’re on, because of the phantom power (aka vampire power) they’re constantly using when plugged in.

 

In fact, the Natural Resources Defense Council reports set-top boxes in the United States consumed approximately 27 Billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2010.

 

To put that into perspective, 27 Billion kilowatt-hours is roughly the annual energy output of NINE coal power-plants combined. Or the yearly household energy consumption of the entire state of Maryland! And it’s also $3 Billion in electricity bills.

 

That doesn’t even factor in the armies of technician trucks cable companies have on the road, or space junk that satellite companies have in the sky. (Ok, I guess we just factored that in).

 

In comparison, the amplified Mohu Leaf 50 HDTV Antenna has a tiny carbon footprint. It only consumes about 3.5 kilowatt-hours per year in stand-by mode, which will cost you about 44 cents a year at the average current energy rate. Since you can easily set it up yourself, there’s no need for that convoy of technician trucks. And the Leaf 30 Antenna? Zero kWh in stand-by mode.

 

Leaf seems like an even more appropriate name now, doesn’t it?

 

So what do you think the symbol of cord-cutting should be? Green scissors? A Leaf? A Green TV? If you have ideas, let us know.

 







World Cup TV For Free: Partidos en Vivo



Worried that cutting the cord will make you miss World Cup moments like USA’s thrilling victory over Ghana on Monday?

 

Don’t!

 

Although ABC is broadcasting most matches on ESPN, you can still catch every minute of every remaining match without cable. That’s because Univision is broadcasting every game “En Vivo” —that means “Live” for those who don’t speak Spanglish— for free, over-the-air.

 

Even if you don’t habla español, here are three reasons why you’ll really enjoy watching the Univision broadcasts.

 

1 – Goals have never been more exciting in any language.

 

2 – Great for Multi-tasking: If you’re working or cleaning around the house, you’ll know exactly when to look up or come running back to the TV. The volume and intensity of the announcers voice rises exponentially as teams work the ball (“pelota”) into scoring position. Meanwhile, no English announcers to distract you!

 

3 – ¡Todo es gratis! World Cup TV for Free!

 

So soak in the passion for futbol (or put the games on mute) and make some new World Cup memories without a cable bill.  And who knows, by July you might find yourself fluent in Spanglish.

 

And for those craving English commentary, here is the schedule for remaining matches on ABC, including the biggest match of all, the World Cup Final on July 13.

Sunday – 6/22 – Group Stage

12pm: Belgium v Russia

3pm: South Korea v Algeria

 

 

Saturday – 6/28 – Round of 16

12pm: Group A winner v Group B runner up

3pm: Group C winner v Group D runner up

 

 

Saturday – 7/5

12pm: Quarterfinal #3

 

 

Saturday – 7/13

3pm: World Cup Final

 







Channels brings Khan Academy to Television



Screen Shot 2014-04-04 at 11.41.07 AMKhan Academy was founded in 2006 by Salman Khan who started tutoring a cousin remotely using Yahoo! Doodle. After creating a few videos he decided to move them to YouTube. Today, Khan Academy’s mission is to “provide a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere. All of our resources are completely free forever, regardless of whether you’re a student, teacher, home-schooler, principal, adult returning to the classroom after 20 years, or a friendly alien just trying to get a leg up in earthly biology.”

So why is this so important? The videos are hosted on YouTube and are free to anyone, anywhere, who has a computer or tablet and an internet connection. Most of the courses are pre-college and allow learners to take ownership of their education. Khan Academy is designed for computers and tablets, but with Mohu’s Channels, the lessons can be streamed directly to a TV, turning the TV into a vehicle for learning and the living room into a lecture hall.

The premise is simple. Khan Academy hosts, via YouTube, hundreds of mini-lectures on math, history, finance, Screen Shot 2014-04-04 at 11.46.10 AMeconomics, physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy and computer science. One of the simple, but most innovative features of many of the videos is that they abandon a traditional “lecture” format and instead the instructor walks the student through the  problem solving process using just a dark screen, colored “markers” and a voice-over. Listening and watching the instructor demonstrate his thought process (and make mistakes in real time) is less daunting to the viewer and the colored markers make the lectures more engaging.

Khan Academy also includes test prep for several standardized tests including the SAT. The latest development for Khan Academy is its partnership with the College Board to create free online test-prep materials for the redesigned SAT which debuts in 2016. With parents paying up to $900 for test preparation classes this next step could help close the income gap  among students often seen in standardized tests.

In future blogs Mohu will feature the weird and wonderful content available on YouTube. And with Channels coming out soon all this content can be streamed directly to your TV.







Networks Announce New OTA Shows



Over the weekend, the major networks announced what OTA shows will be renewed for the fall and which ones will get the ax. Most of Nielsen’s Top Ten such as NCIS, Big Bang Theory, Sixty Minutes, The Voice, and Blue Bloods have all been renewed. Rumors of Law & Order: SVU’s demise were premature, as it too was renewed, making it one of the longest running dramas on TV.

All of these shows, and more that will be introduced later, can be watched free, over the air with a Mohu antenna. And remember that the Mohu Metro is a great gift for college grads and even for dad’s “man cave.”

Newcomers such as Crisis, Surviving Jack, Believe, and The Carrie Diaries were all cancelled to make room for new shows that the networks will pick up in the fall.
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Mohu Graduates From College



college-graduationCollege graduation season is here and a Mohu antenna can help new grads save money.  A Mohu antenna provides free over the air (OTA) TV for budget conscious college grads. An estimated 1.6 million students are expected to be part of the class of 2014 and they are saddled with the double whammy of high student loans and a tough job market.

According to CNN, the average student loan is $29,000. This class is going to have to spend and save wisely in order to keep their finances in order. Many of these new grads are what the TV industry calls “cord-nevers.” They use cell phones instead of landlines and watch TV content on computers or tablets. The last time they saw cable TV may have been at their parents’ home or at a bar or restaurant.
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Mohu Antennas Love May Madness



May is a great month for watching OTA TV with a Mohu antenna (and be sure to check out our new Leaf Metro). May is “sweeps” month where the broadcast networks show the season finales of their “regular” season shows. But viewers won’t be stuck with a summer full of re-runs because the networks are also introducing new content in May.

crossbones-s1-keyart-xl1NBC is banking on some serious star power. John Malkovich stars as the pirate Blackbeard in Crossbones–The new legend of Blackbeard (Friday, May 30, 10/9c). Set in the Bahamas in 1715, Blackbeard tries to steal a chronometer from an English ship which has the potential to change seafaring and commerce. But the English aren’t giving in so easily and it’s up to the viewer to determine who the villain is–Blackbeard or the English. John Malkovich is outstanding as the villain in this YouTube trailer.

NBC_Rosemarys_Baby_miniseries_posterIn addition,  Zoe Saldana stars in NBC’s two part miniseries Rosemary’s Baby (May 11). In a new twist on Ira Levin’s 1967 thriller, Zoe Saldana and her husband Guy (Patrick J. Adams) leave New York City for a new life in Paris. At first, their arrival in Paris seems surrounded by good fortune. But when Rosemary becomes pregnant, she starts to believe that things are not what they seem and their new neighbors may have dark motives for her baby. Agnieszka Holland (Europa Europa, The Wire, Treme) directs this two-part psychological thriller. Click here to see the trailer on YouTube.

These shows and other great content are available free, over the air with a Mohu Leaf, Curve or Sky antenna. Broadcasters are producing great content for every night of the week and there’s no need to spend $70-$100 a month for cable. Join the growing numbers of cord-cutters and ditch your cable!







Cord Cutters Should Have an Antenna



wralweather1Cord cutters who rely solely on streaming content should strongly consider adding an HDTV antenna to their homes. The recent outbreak of severe weather across the Midwest and Southeast United States led to flooding, tornadoes and the deaths of more than 30 people. Fortunately, improved radar systems and early warnings allow people enough time to find shelter. The early warnings are often broadcast over local networks’ news channels and without a TV antenna such as a Leaf or Curve, viewers may not get the warnings about nearby storms.

Screen Shot 2014-05-01 at 8.59.13 AM

Storm clouds near Mohu

Fortunately, the severe weather mostly bypassed Raleigh (the home of Mohu) but for two days our local stations broadcast the locations of heavy rain, hail, thunderstorms, flooding and  tornadoes. We were definitely aware of what was going on, and had a tornado or flood come, we would have had time to prepare. Two nights ago, while watching OTA TV, the screen had a ticker running along the bottom updating viewers of where the storms were and their severity. Other stations broadcast the weather alerts directly from the National Weather Service.

The bottom line is streaming content is a great way to cut the cord. But Netflix, Hulu+, Amazon Prime and the rest cannot replace broadcast TV especially in times of emergencies and bad weather. It’s also possible to get warnings on a smart phone, but they are often not as detailed as a real-time weather forecast.

On a happier note, an antenna is great to watch TV content in real time, especially broadcasts like the Super Bowl, the Oscars, and season finales (coming soon in May) and not have to wait to stream it from the network’s website or another streaming provider.







Industry Updates–Streaming Content Gets Big



Lots of changes took place in the TV/streaming content industry in the past few weeks. Let’s pause and look at what has happened.

Supreme CourtABC vs. Aereo–the Supreme Court heard this case on April 22 and the public can expect a ruling in June. Mohu covered it in an earlier blog. Two issues are at the core of the case. The first is does Aereo’s “re-transmission” of OTA content constitute a public or private showing? If it is a public showing, does Aereo owe retransmission fees to the broadcasters? The second issue is murkier and relates to storing items in the cloud. The Supreme Court Justices are more concerned with items in the cloud and the impact their ruling will have on other cloud-based content–anything from iTunes to DropBox.

Netflix is Moving to Cable–Netflix has long lived on computers and streaming devices and, along with an HDTV antenna, is cord-cutting staple. However, according to the Washington Post, Netflix signed a deal with three small cable companies (RCN, Atlantic Broadband and Grande Communications) and will become a cable channel on their TiVo DVR boxes. Viewers will need a separate Netflix subscription to watch Netflix content. However, this is the first time Netflix has explicitly put its content on a cable box.

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