Dan Beldy, Managing Director of Steamboat Ventures told me at lunch that he is thinking about putting together a consortium to lease their own fighter jet so they can properly defend themselves against Google's recently acquired German-made sub-sonic bomber. Google's Eric Schmidt is a pilot, but Dan used to fly F/A-18 Hornets for the Navy.
Dave Westin, President of ABC News, sent a company wide email notifying employees of drastic budget cuts. ABC News, which is trying to limit expenses asked that executives take coach flights, stay in cheaper hotels, while canceling all print subscriptions. tightening convention attendance policy and limiting business lunches. Westin also canceled the company's holiday party.
Netflix announced that it will finally launch "Watch Instantly" for Macs. The streaming movie service, to be made available via Microsoft's Silverlight, will be available by the end of the year. The service has been available to Windows and Linux users for nearly 2 years.
Oprah named Amazon's Kindle as her "favorite new gadget." Looking to build off the endorsement, Amazon will offer a $50 rebate to users who enter the code "OPRAHWINFREY" at checkout. The rebate will bring the cost of the Kindle to $359, but the big question is whether or not this will bring Kindle to the mainstream.
Cox is expected to announce the launch of a cell phone network today. Cox plans on building the network in areas where it provide cable service and partnering with Sprint in other areas. The company spent $500 million on wireless capacity and hopes to have it available commercially in the second half of 2009.
Shelly Palmer is a consultant and the host of MediaBytes a daily show featuring news you can use about technology, media & entertainment. He is Managing Director of Advanced Media Ventures Group LLC and the author of Television Disrupted: The Transition from Network to Networked TV (2008, York House Press). Shelly is also President of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, NY (the organization that bestows the coveted Emmy® Awards). You can join the MediaBytes mailing list here. Shelly can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org