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June 24, 2019

Cricket World Cup highlights just how big video streaming is in India

As hundreds of millions of people turn their attention to the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup tournament, many of them are using an Indian streaming service to follow the ins and outs of the game.

More than 100 million users tuned in to Hotstar, an on-demand streaming service owned by Disney, on June 16, the day India and Pakistan played a league match against each other. That’s the highest engagement the four-year-old service has clocked on its platform to date, it said in a statement today.

Hotstar said about 66% of its viewers came from outside of big metro cities, an equally remarkable feat that illustrates the growing adoption of the [...]

 
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June 23, 2019

Review: Teenagers must ward off mischievous supernatural beings in Jinn

Supernatural creatures threaten a group of high school students in the new Netflix series Jinn.

A high school field trip to the ancient archaeological site of Petra turns tragic, and supernatural creatures are unleashed to prey on the living in Jinn, the first Arabic language original series from Netflix. Forget the Westernized concept of genies found in our popular culture, like Aladdin or I Dream of Jeannie. This series draws on more traditional Arabian/Islamic mythology for its portrayal of the jinn, and it’s all the richer for it.

(Mild spoilers below.)

Mira (Salma Malhas), a high school student in Amman, [...]

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June 22, 2019

Original Content podcast: Netflix’s ‘When They See Us’ is difficult-but-essential viewing

“When They See Us,” a new miniseries on Netflix, can be so infuriating that it’s hard to watch — especially its first hour, which depicts the arrest of the teenaged boys who became known as The Central Park Five, and shows police detectives coercing them into confessing to a brutal rape.

We review the series on the latest episode of the Original Content podcast. Some of us struggled to get through that first episode, and the episodes that follow have plenty of painful moments too, but “When They See Us” rewards viewers who persist with a moving and unforgettable dramatization of all the ways the system failed Yusef Salaam, Korey Wise, Kevin Richardson, [...]

 
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June 22, 2019

Netflix is testing a pop-out floating video player on desktop

Netflix is testing out a new feature that could mean you never have to stop watching, not even while you work – it’s a pop-out video player, similar to the one you may be used to from iOS and macOS for any website or app that supports Safari’s native video player. Basically, that means you can choose to ‘pop out’ the video and then reposition it anywhere on your screen for a picture-in-picture effect that remains visible over any other apps you might be using.

The streaming company told Engadget, which found this experimental feature, that it’s only a test, but you can see why this might be a useful feature for users. Netflix could offer this already [...]

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