JOOST will officially release its peer-to-peer Internet TV application to the general public today. The software will be upgraded to offer improved navigation and search, with an open API that allows developers to create Joost widgets. Joost has averaged 50,000 downloads per week while in limited beta, and the company expects that number to reach into the millions when the software becomes more widely available.
ESPN has relaunched its ESPN Video site, in beta form, adding the ability for users to embed some video clips. The beta version of the site adds easier navigation and a cleaner interface. Embeddable clips will allow users to distribute on behalf of the network, inserting the video into personal websites, blogs, and social-networking profiles.
ADOBE is expected to announce the beta version of the Adobe Media Player today. The software will allow users to play Flash video files in a branded player, both streamed over the Internet or downloaded and stored locally. It can also automatically receive and download videos via RSS feed. Adobe will offer content from CBS, PBS, Yahoo, and more. The first full release of Adobe Media Player is expected in July of 2008.
THE FINANCIAL TIMES is following the NY Times’ lead, and will open its paid subscription wall for casual readers of the site. However, the newspaper is pursuing a unique online business model. Starting in mid-October, users will have free access to 30 articles per month. Paying subscribers will have full access to all articles. The change will allow FT.com to benefit from stories posted to blogs and social-networking profiles, or found via search engines. Both avenues bring the occasional, casual reader to the site.
RADIOHEAD will allow users to choose the price they are willing to pay for the band’s forthcoming album. The album will initially be available only as a digital download from the group’s website. When ordering, the site actually asks the user to enter a price of his own choosing. The band is reportedly releasing the album without a record label. Radiohead is one of the few bands that refuses to sell its music on iTunes, because it objects to selling songs on a track-by-track basis.