|Media type||Optical disc|
The VideoNow was a portable video player produced by Hasbro and released by their subsidiary Tiger Electronics in 2003. The systems use discs called PVDs (which stands for Personal Video Disc), which can store about 30 minutes (half an hour) of video, the length of an average TV show with commercials (a typical TV episode is about 20–23 minutes without them), so each PVD contains only one episode, with trailers at the end to use the leftover time on most PVDs, including Nickelodeon PVDs. Video data is stored on the left audio channel with audio on the right channel, thus making it impossible to achieve stereo sound on the system, which only plays in black and white. The video plays at about 15 frames per second. Most of the shows were from Nickelodeon, such as SpongeBob SquarePants and The Fairly OddParents, and later they released shows from Cartoon Network, such as Ed, Edd n Eddy and Dexter's Laboratory. A small amount of movies were also released on the system, but due to the limited space on a PVD, said movies would have to be released on at least three discs, depending on the length of said film.
Hasbro also produced editing software for creating custom VideoNow Color PVDs called the VideoNow Media Wizard in 2005, which came with blank PVD media. A number of unofficial solutions are available for creating the oddly-formatted VideoNow files, including a plug-in for the popular video processing program Virtual Dub. The files can then be burned to a CD-R using standard CD burning software, and the disc cut down to the required size.
As the VideoNow Color does not accept standard 8 cm mini-CDs, some creative users have resorted to cutting down standard 12 cm CD-R discs, though not without problems. Hasbro made recordable PVDs available without the Media Wizard from their online store. However, at least one video has been posted on YouTube showing how VideoNow Color players can be easily modified to accept standard-sized CDs with a bit of cutting and gluing. Full-sized CDs can hold roughly 42 minutes of total video, and play with no difference in the modified player.
Because VideoNow uses video discs and has very little skip protection, it is more prone to skipping if the VideoNow is touched, bumped, or shaken while playing a PVD. It was discontinued in 2007.