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View Full Version : A Simple Idea (But A Different One...)




Derwood
Nov 2, 2007, 08:35 AM
...I like the :apple:TV. I don't own one (...yet) but I like the idea of it as it is, and particularly I like the potential of it.

Now, we all know that :apple:TV has been left to stagnate while the higher priorities of first iPhone and then 10.5 Leopard have occupied the folks at Apple.

I think that Leopard could be the saviour of :apple:TV. What if Time Machine was able to back-up to your :apple:TV? Apple introduces a new top-end model with a 250gb hd? All your content would be there and Front Row could be tweaked to make nice with the new arrangement.

It would seem like a fairly simple way of adding substantial value to what a lot of people perceive to be a *prepares to dodge various projectiles that may head his way* slightly uninspiring product.

Don't let :apple:TV die Apple.



balamw
Nov 2, 2007, 08:43 AM
and then
...

Postus interruptus?

B

tobefirst
Nov 2, 2007, 08:45 AM
I'm on the edge of my seat waiting for the new idea!!!

Derwood
Nov 2, 2007, 08:45 AM
...gremlins in the works.

Have edited it now.

balamw
Nov 2, 2007, 08:49 AM
I still hope that Apple has some kind of <$500 NAS partner device up their sleeves for :apple:TV, maybe just the next version of AEBS. I don't want to have to keep my PC/Mac on all the time to feed my :apple:TV...

Of course this server could easily perform as you suggest.

B

glennyboiwpg
Nov 2, 2007, 09:13 AM
There isn 't ANYTHING wrong with appleTV.

no... the answer to the appleTV woes isn't in the hardware... its on the ITUNES store.


Offer dvd quality for all movies/tv shows, give people the choice of buying or renting their movies/tv shows and let them broswe and purchase/download from the appleTV interface.

Oh... and make it so canadians/other countries can use the tv/movie version of the store... (LIKE COME ON ALREADY!)

savar
Nov 2, 2007, 09:33 AM
Don't let :apple:TV die Apple.

Apple DVR forever!

slu
Nov 2, 2007, 10:03 AM
I don't get it. It sounds to me like you just want the :apple:TV to have a bigger HDD. You can already synch whatever content you want to the :apple:TV from iTunes. I don't see what Time Machine has to do with it unless you want the ability to restore content from the :apple:TV to the Mac...but that is not the point of the device.

glennyboiwpg is spot on. I would buy an :apple:TV for every TV in my house today if I could rent movies from the iTunes store and if I could do it from my couch via the :apple:TV.

You will never get DVR functionality because Apple wants you to use the store.

Derwood
Nov 2, 2007, 10:38 AM
...Apple are all about ambitious eco-systems and have a very clear strategy where they build in added functionality and value if you plump for the Apple option of whatever it is from their product line-up that you're buying.

iPod / iPhone - iTunes (incl. movies, music, photos, podcasts), Address Book, Mail...

Airport Express / Airport Extreme - Wireless printing made easy, Air-Disk, Air-Tunes...

It's all about making the Apple option seem like the ONLY choice, and it works. Apple makes sexy. AEBS and AirDisk might not be able to match the performance of a dedicated third-party NAS drive but a lot of folks don't care. They want it simple and hassle free. Apple drives this kind of integration.

To allow Time Machine to back up to :apple:TV would surely mean that a lot of people would dispense with a third-party external drive. Clutter free, one less device to worry about. If they were able to control the cost margin over and above what a similarly sized storage unit might cost then they might also be able to coax a few consumers to plump for an :apple:TV who might otherwise not have considered it.

<b>slu</b> - Are you telling me that the implimentation at this stage is already equivalent to what Time Machine would do if it were able to target back-ups to an :apple:TV?

rhys105
Nov 2, 2007, 10:49 AM
There isn 't ANYTHING wrong with appleTV.

no... the answer to the appleTV woes isn't in the hardware... its on the ITUNES store.


Offer dvd quality for all movies/tv shows, give people the choice of buying or renting their movies/tv shows and let them broswe and purchase/download from the appleTV interface.

Oh... and make it so canadians/other countries can use the tv/movie version of the store... (LIKE COME ON ALREADY!)

agreed!!!

slu
Nov 2, 2007, 11:36 AM
<b>slu</b> - Are you telling me that the implimentation at this stage is already equivalent to what Time Machine would do if it were able to target back-ups to an :apple:TV?

Sort of. The way you presented it was to allow time machine to backup to the appleTV and "enhance" front row to use this content. If I got that wrong, then sorry about that, but if this is what you meant, then yes the device already does that.

If you are saying, allow Time Machine to back up to an appleTV just like it would to any external HDD and allow a restore from the appleTV as well, because you think this will sell more appleTVs, then I think it would help sell a couple more, but would not have a huge impact for two reasons:

1. Time Machine is Leopard only and appleTV is both Mac and PC. Just like in the PC world, many Mac users won't upgrade to Leopard until they get a new Mac. It seems like everyone has because we hang out here, but I haven't upgraded as Tiger is currently fine for me and to be honest, except for people on these boards, I don't know anyone that has upgraded yet. And I know tons of people that use Macs (I work at a university).

2. If you have no interest in the real functionality of the appleTV (or think you don't), you would never pay what Apple would charge for an appleTV with a 250 or 500 GB HDD when an good external USB drive of the same capacity could be had for literally a quarter of the cost. On new egg you can get a 250 GB drive for about $80. A 160 GB appleTV is $400! This is not insignificant. If the appleTV matched the HD space of external HDDs, had Time Machine backup capability, and was say $150 more than an external drive, then maybe it would help. I just can't see Apple dropping the price that far.

As I said before (and others), what is holding the appleTV back is simply the crappy movie store with no rental option and the fact that you can't buy from the couch. They add that and these things will fly off the shelf.

If I could rent a movie from the iTunes store from the couch or use the craptacular Comcast On Demand, I would use the iTunes store every time.

Why can someone buy from iTunes on an iPhone or iPod Touch, but not from the appleTV is beyond me and totally dumb.

Derwood
Nov 2, 2007, 12:14 PM
Sort of. The way you presented it was to allow time machine to backup to the appleTV and "enhance" front row to use this content. If I got that wrong, then sorry about that, but if this is what you meant, then yes the device already does that.

No, that wasn't what I meant. Probably didn't make myself clear. All I meant was that Front Row could be tweaked so that it wouldn't totally freak out navigating its way around a whole bunch of files in unsupported file formats in order to find the media content that it was after.

1. Time Machine is Leopard only and appleTV is both Mac and PC. Just like in the PC world, many Mac users won't upgrade to Leopard until they get a new Mac. It seems like everyone has because we hang out here, but I haven't upgraded as Tiger is currently fine for me and to be honest, except for people on these boards, I don't know anyone that has upgraded yet. And I know tons of people that use Macs (I work at a university).

...and you make a bloody good point. But what I'm selling is the idea that further and tighter integration of Apple products can, does, and will continue to drive sales of Apple products and this Leopard / Time Machine / :apple: TV integration could be another one of those things. Perhaps.

For example, Mr Wintel has an :apple:TV at home which he uses with his Dell P4 3.0ghz machine. He loves the :apple:TV, is obviously cheesed off that he can't buy iTunes content direct from Front Row on the :apple:TV, but that aside he loves it. Content streams flawlessly and he's well happy. He got an iPod for Christmas and he's chuffed as chips with that as well.

The Dell machine goes belly up and he suddenly finds himself in the market for a new computer. He's already got the :apple:TV, he does a bit of snooping about and finds out that he could be getting a lot more out of it if he were to buy one of the new Macs running Leopard. If he goes Mac, Leopard and Time Machine would turn his :apple:TV into a backup storage unit as well

Bingo bango. Hardware sales. One more switcher.

Granted, this might well happen without the Time Machine / :apple:TV hook-up but...


2. If you have no interest in the real functionality of the appleTV (or think you don't), you would never pay what Apple would charge for an appleTV with a 250 or 500 GB HDD when an good external USB drive of the same capacity could be had for literally a quarter of the cost. On new egg you can get a 250 GB drive for about $80. A 160 GB appleTV is $400! This is not insignificant. If the appleTV matched the HD space of external HDDs, had Time Machine backup capability, and was say $150 more than an external drive, then maybe it would help. I just can't see Apple dropping the price that far.

...and if I'm being honest I can't see the price dropping that far but Apple have got to do something if they want to protect the iTunes ecosystem. Record labels pulling out, NBC (!?!?) pulling out. Drop the margin on the :apple:TV, increase the functionality of it in some way, and secure the future of iTunes and Apple as a media content distributor for the forseeable future...

Bottom line is that :apple:TV ain't worth a dime unless it has a large installed user base and that is never going to be achieved until there is a major reorientation in approach (...and I agree that iTunes purchasing and global content provision is key to this).

And just to reiterate how much I am behind :apple:TV ...

Don't let :apple:TV die Apple. Please.

MicBook
Nov 2, 2007, 02:21 PM
Another thing that would go along with this idea is if you backed up your documents you could be able to use the :apple:tv to present your Keynote or PP presentations

Just a thought


:apple:Cheers:apple:

slu
Nov 2, 2007, 03:20 PM
Bottom line is that :apple:TV ain't worth a dime unless it has a large installed user base and that is never going to be achieved until there is a major reorientation in approach (...and I agree that iTunes purchasing and global content provision is key to this).

And just to reiterate how much I am behind :apple:TV ...

Don't let :apple:TV die Apple. Please.

Agreed, and adding the ability to use Time Machine with an :apple:TV as you suggested could be another of those features in the Apple "eco-system" that differentiates them from everyone else.

You got me thinking about this from a different perspective. If I knew nothing about Macs and I walked into the Apple store and I was looking to buy an iMac and the salesperson gave me a pitch along the lines of, "You know for $300 more you could also get an :apple:TV, which is a bridge from your Mac to your TV. Imagine if your TV was like a huge iPod and you could consume all of the music, movies, and photos on your iMac on your HDTV and surround sound system without any wires. And oh by the way, no need for an external drive for backups. With Leopard and an :apple:TV you are ready to start backing up your iMac right out of the box!" That would work on me (assuming I could afford it).

And I am sure that adding this functionality would cost Apple next to nothing for each unit and would not eat into the margins one bit since this is a small software only change (I assume).

And they could even enable the USB port on the :apple:TV for people who have older version so they could plug in an external HDD that adds space for both backups and iTunes content. Although this is not the usual Apple way.

Hell, add in wireless router capability to the :apple:TV and now we have something going! And there is some precedence for this with the Airport Express, which is kinda like a really wimpy audio :apple:TV anyway. I am starting to think combining the Airport Extreme Base Station and the :apple:TV would be the perfect product, if you could rent and buy from the couch. I'd probably pay $400-$500 for something like that.

Good thread. More thought provoking than the add a DVD drive or DVR functionality to the :apple:TV threads we normally see.