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Obama's Digital Inauguration: MediaBytes with Shelly Palmer January 20, 2009

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Looking for the best ways to follow the Inauguration at work? Hulu will offer a live stream of the Inauguration of President Barack Obama, while both CNN and C-Span will offer streams on their websites. Facebook will also log updates from the inauguration on its site, while thousands of Twitter users are expected to be covering the event on the micro-blogging service.

The FCC is investigating whether or not Comcast is giving preferential broadband treatment to its VoIP service. The commission asked Comcast to provide "a detailed justification for its [Comcast's] disparate treatment of its own VoIP service as compared to that offered by other VoIP providers on its network." The notice comes months after Comcast was busted by the FCC for throttling the service of heavy bit torrent users.

Verizon Wireless is set to begin offering in-home cellular base stations known as femtocells to customers. The new boxes, which use licensed frequencies to extend ones wireless service indoors, are becoming a common feature for wireless providers, as Sprint and AT&T have made similar plans in the past few months. Verizon plans to offer the extra service for $250 a month.

Cisco Systems is set to release a computer server with built-in virtualization software. The move finds Cisco moving away from the microchip market in favor of the competitive, and evolving server business. Preparing themselves for the 21st century economy, Cisco CTO Padmasree Warrior said "We see this not as a new market, but a market transition."

Sources say Microsoft is preparing to unveil a refreshed version of Windows Mobile. The mobile operating system may include an Applications store, as well as "SkyBox", a syncing cloud based offering similar to Apple's MobileMe. The much needed upgrade to its mobile operating system finds Microsoft playing catch up to Apple, RiM, Google and Palm.

Circuit City tanked yesterday and I asked you to email me to find out why that was NOT good news for Best Buy. Thanks for clogging up my inbox. The answer is simple. "And then there was one." Best Buy cannot survive if it only stands for price. When Circuit City was alive, there was a genus of large-scale retail stores called consumer electronics specialty stores. Now, it's over! From now on, Best Buy's largest, most formidable competitor will be Wal*Mart. And, as everyone knows, they only stand for price.

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 shelly@palmer.net