Apple TV Shipping, Speculation Continues

Apple began shipping Apple TV yesterday. This device hooks up to a television, and can play movies and music from iTunes on a Mac or PC. As Apple promotes, “if it’s on iTunes, it’s on your widescreen TV.”

Since I only receive over-the-air broadcasts, I download episodes of TV shows that are only available on premium channels. I’m looking forward to being able to watch these on my Samsung HDTV.

As with most products from Apple, there has been a lot of speculation about what direction the company will take moving forward. One prediction is the addition of DVR capabilities, similar to TiVo, that would allow TV shows to be recorded and watched later.

Dave Zatz claims that Apple TV is not a DVR, because “Apple has not hidden a tuner or any video inputs in the box.” While he’s correct about what is “in the box,” I’d expect a little more “out of the box” thinking from someone employed by Sling Media. Because of the increasingly ubiquitous home network, which Apple TV is connected to, the TV tuner does not need to reside in the box.

Indeed, it is easy to imagine future AirPort Extreme models including a TV tuner. The delivery mechanism, be it cable, satellite, or over-the-air, can be abstracted away in software and translated into an RTP stream. That stream can then be played and recorded by Apple TV.

This is the era of convergence that everyone likes to proclaim, and Apple is positioned perfectly. Their suite of simple, easy to use products are well understood and accepted by the consumer market.


Lonna Hanson
March 22, 2007 at 11:33 AM

I enjoyed reading your thoughts, Jared. I can “kind of” relate to this one, too. The computer “talk” is kind of in my mindset. It sounds awesome what iTV can do. Have you purchased one yet, or is it high on your “wish list.” If you have purchased one, hope you really enjoy it.

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