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HTPC News Roundup 2018 Wk 3: Best legal torrent sites, Podcasts for Plex, and more

written by Moe Long January 19, 2018

Welcome to the htpcBeginner HTPC News Roundup 2018 Wk 3. This week saw the best legal torrent sites for 2018, TiVo gain smart home integration, and more. Read on for the latest in HTPC news and updates!

htpcBeginner Recap

In case you missed them, here is a recap of all our interesting articles published last week:

Best Plex Client Devices:
  1. NVIDIA SHIELD TV Pro Home Media Server - $199.99 editors pick
  2. Amazon Fire TV Streaming Media Player - $89.99
  3. Roku Premiere+ 4K UHD - $83.99
  4. CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 Complete Starter Kit - $69.99
  5. Xbox One 500 GB Console - $264.99

HTPC News Around the Web

TiVo adds support for Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT

The smart home and home theatre PC (HTPC) spaces continue to merge. As the latest development in the smart home-HTPC interesction, TiVo adds support for smart home tech including the Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and IFTTT. As such, this should make it easier for TiVo owners to simplify their home media experience. For instance, using Alexa, you can play, pause, and select various items. There's a bit more functionality with the Google Assistant, like searching for titles with your voice. Using IFTTT, you can perform actions like receiving a text message if someone tries to unlock parental controls, automatically skip commercial breaks, and sync with smart home tech like smart doorbells to turn to specific channels when the doorbell rings.

Podcasts are coming to Plex, followed by web series and other digital media

Here at htpcBeginner, we're huge Plex fans. I love my low-power Plex server, and my adoration for the super awesome media server software company only grows with its bevy of enhancements rolled out. As the latest improvement to the Plex platform, podcasts are soon coming out, followed by web series. As a podcast buff, and podcast co-host as well, I'm pretty jazzed for this inclusion. This update follows additions to Plex such as its news streaming feature, and live TV plus DVR. Overall, Plex persists in honing its software as a complete media center experience, not merely media server software. [Read: How to use Plex VR in Daydream]

The sad state of not-so-smart TVs

Although an excellent concept, smart TVs are not smart purchases. Rather, you're better off buying a good television set or projector, then adding a streaming box like a Plex client device, Emby client, or Kodi box. As PC Authority reports, the smart TV realm is overpopulated by stratified frameworks, abandonware, and proprietary software. Therefore, it's best to skip the smart TV and just get a dedicated streaming device.

"The Man From Earth" sequel 'pirated' on The Pirate bay - By its creators

pirates-bittorrent-usenetPiracy performs business as usual, and...from content creators? As Torrent Freak reveals, the creators of "The Man From Earth" have pirated the sequel. It was actually piracy which helped the original film rise to prominence. This is a fascinating idea, and further reinforces the notion that, in fact, piracy does not hurt sales. [Read: 12 Best torrent sites in 2018]

Nicholas Winding Refn, India's Times Bridge invest in Mubi streaming service

Film maker Nicolas Winding Refn ("The Neon Demon") and India's Times Bridge investment group team up to support streaming service Mubi. It's a cool service with a smattering 30 rotating films. Content is curated not by an algorithm, but by humans, which further differentiates this provider. Amid the bevy of streaming options, like Sling TV, DirecTV Now, and PS Vue, Mubi is a top pick for its unique offerings.

Did you find any interesting news stories or projects from around the HTPC space? Share them with us in the comments section below!

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