Plex acquires streaming news service Watchup


Plex, one of the most popular media player apps on the Fire TV, has aquired Watchup, a streaming news service, which also has a Fire TV app. Details of the transaction were not disclosed, but Plex will absorb Watchup’s team of engineers and technology. Plex says they’re building out a content ecosystem in 2017, and this acquisition adds Watchup’s over 150 news sources to the lineup. Watchup allows users to customize their newscasts based on their interests. Plex CEO Keith Valory says this personalization technology will be used for other content within Plex in the future.

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Plex releases official Kodi Add-on

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Plex is the most popular media center app in the official Fire TV appstore and Kodi is the most popular one not in the appstore. Both have unique features, so many people use both apps. If you’re among those people, you’ll be intrigued to hear that Plex has just release an official Kodi add-on that provides access to Plex from within Kodi. Since the add-on uses Kodi’s media player, Plex says it “enables powerfully advanced knob twisting and lever sliding to fine tune playback.” There were always ways to combine Plex and Kodi, and MrMC even added built-in Plex support a few months back, but it’s always nice to have official support from Plex themselves. The new Plex add-on is currently only available to Plex Pass subscribers, but it will be available to everyone soon.

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Plex Cloud lets you run a virtual Plex Server using Amazon’s unlimited Cloud Drive

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Plex has just announced Plex Cloud, which may be the simplest way to access all of your personal media from anywhere, without needing to leave a PC or NAS drive on all the time. Plex Cloud links a Plex Pass to an Amazon Cloud Drive account. This allows the Plex app to stream media directly from the Amazon Cloud Drive, without needing to have a PC or NAS running Plex’s server software. Read more ›

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Plex’s new beta DVR functionality now available on the NVIDIA SHIELD TV

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Earlier this month, Plex announced that its server software could now function as a DVR to record content from networked HDHomeRun tuners. NVIDIA has now announced that its SHIELD Android TV box has received an updated Plex app that allows it to take advantage of the new DVR functionality. Unlike every other streaming box on the market, the NVIDIA SHIELD TV can function not only as a Plex client for content playback, but also as a Plex server which sends media to other devices. This unique capability, along with the updated Plex app, now allows it to also record content using Plex’s new DVR feature.

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Plex adds DVR functionality for OTA and CableCARD tuners

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Plex has added DVR capabilities to their server software. A Plex server can now be configured to work with compatible tuners to record shows directly. The feature requires a Plex Pass subscription, which runs $4.99 per month, $39.99 per year, or $149.99 lifetime. Plex DVR is available right now through an open beta, but comes with several limitations that will hopefully be addressed before it’s official release in a few months. Read more ›

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Plex adds support for 4K playback on the 2nd-gen Amazon Fire TV

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A few weeks ago, Plex added official support for 4K video files on the 2nd generation Amazon Fire TV with their v4.21.0.528 update. This means 4K videos can be directly played on the Fire TV without your Plex server needing to transcode the files. This includes support for H265 HEVC encoded files, however many users are finding their 4K files don’t meet the required specifications for direct playback by Plex. For starters, files must be encoded with a maximum bit depth of 8-bits per sample and contain metadata identifying them as having a Main profile level. Missing surround sound support is also an issue, so files should have an AC3 or AAC audio track present. Even if the file fits all the criteria, it still may not play directly due to a bug identified last week. Plex is working to improve 4K playback on the Fire TV, so look for better support with future updates. While the newly added 4K support is not perfect, it’s a good first step towards local 4K content playback for the Fire TV 2.

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Plex updating app with fresh new interface

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Plex has just announced via their Facebook page that they’ll be updating their Fire TV app with a fresh new interface. According to their post, the new interface will be available on the 2nd-gen Fire TV first and will come to the 1st-gen Fire TV and Fire TV Stick later. Most likely, the new app will require Fire OS 5, so it can’t be released to older devices until the final Fire OS 5 software update gets released.

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Plex app goes Freemium — Now free with limited functionality

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Plex is one of the most popular apps for the Fire TV. It ranked #1 on the list of most popular apps purchased by AFTVnews readers. The app organizes all of your personal media across your computers and makes it available to stream on your Fire TV or Fire TV Stick, in addition to other devices. It may not be as powerful as Kodi, but it competes by being a breeze to setup.

Plex was a $4.99 app, up until today when it switched to a freemium pricing model. You can now instal and try the app for free with limited functionality. Mainly, music and videos streamed from your Plex Media Server are limited to 1 minute of playback; enough time to get a feel for the service and its stream quality. You can then unlock the apps full functionality through an in-app purchase or by signing up for Plex’s paid subscription service, Plex Pass, which provides even more features. If you’ve purchased the app before today’s change, there’s no need to worry. The app should detect that fact and unlock its full functionality.

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App Deal: Plex on sale for $1.99, was $4.99 [Expired]

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Plex has just gone on sale for $1.99 in the Amazon Appstore. That’s 60% off it’s regular price of $4.99. Plex allows you to organize your personal media library and allows you to easily stream it to a variaty of devices, including the Fire TV. This isn’t the lowest price we’ve seen for the Plex app. It was once Free along with other paid apps during an Appstore promotion, but more commonly has dropped to $0.99 in the past.

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How to setup Plex (and XBMC) for Surround Sound Audio

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Plex is probably the best app to easily stream media from your computer to the Amazon Fire TV. However, the app does have one major flaw. Currently, the video player built into the Plex app can only play surround sound from mp4 files with Dolby Digital (DD) 5.1 audio. It can’t play DD audio from mkv files and can’t play DTS audio at all. In this guide, we’ll show you how to setup Plex (and XBMC) to play surround sound audio from any file format. Read more ›

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