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View Full Version : I'm curious... What would you buy Apple tv for?




iWoz
Mar 25, 2010, 06:44 PM
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Seems like alot of money for what it is?



GermanSuplex
Mar 25, 2010, 07:21 PM
To watch your iTunes content on your TV.

If you've only got a few music videos and songs, and not a lot else, then it's probably not worth your cash.

But me, I have an expansive library... several movies, several seasons of TV shows converted to h.264, several purchased TV shows, music concerts.. I've been converting as many DVDs as I can to h.264 video and I enjoy seeing it all on my TV without changing discs and shuffling through bulky boxes to find a particular episode I want to watch.

It's really nice to be in bed and to have literally thousands of TV shows and movies just a few clicks away.

I also have an iPhone and will be getting an iPad, so having iTunes on my desktop and all of these devices that all of my media works on is really nice to have.

fpnc
Mar 25, 2010, 07:40 PM
Seems like alot of money for what it is?
It's actually pretty cheap for what you get. Let's see if you can find another dedicated media player that includes a 160GB hard drive, ethernet, and 802.11n wireless built-in for anything around $200 USD. The Apple TV also doesn't add on a yearly subscription to the base price (which is pretty much why TiVo can sell their hardware at their current prices).

About the only products that compare favorably with the Apple TV's cost are the XBox 360 and the PlayStation 3. Of course, people are still arguing about how much money Microsoft and Sony have lost by subsidizing the cost of those products (it's rumored to be in the multiple billions of dollars). Until just the last year or so both of those products were apparently sold at prices below their manufacturing costs (some think they are barely breaking even now or maybe still loosing a little on each unit). In any case, it's believed that the Apple TV is the lowest margin product that Apple produces.

Beyond that, the Apple TV has some nice features that other products don't match. Of course, the Apple TV doesn't do everything and some other products are better at certain things but IMO the Apple TV is still a pretty good value.

jaw04005
Mar 25, 2010, 08:00 PM
It's actually pretty cheap for what you get. Let's see if you can find another dedicated media player that includes a 160GB hard drive, ethernet, and 802.11n wireless built-in for anything around $200 USD.

Heís in the UK. So, itís the equivalent of like $330 over there and I believe the UK iTunes Store is sorely lacking as far as rental and HD content goes.

paduck
Mar 25, 2010, 08:21 PM
The kids are death to DVDs. If you have an AppleTV, they can't destroy the media and they still have access to the content. Which is something an iPod is good for as well.

GreatDrok
Mar 26, 2010, 02:41 AM
The kids are death to DVDs. If you have an AppleTV, they can't destroy the media and they still have access to the content. Which is something an iPod is good for as well.

Seconded. I have an extensive DVD collection I don't want my son messing with. I've converted all his favourite movies and TV shows to h.264 and dropped them into iTunes. He loves it. The box is locked away in a glass fronted cabinet but he can use the remote to access the interface and that is just fine. It is so simple a two year old can use it. Literally. And my wife loves it too. Never underestimate that factor. Having lots of media on it and the easy rental of films makes it a very popular piece of kit in my house. The only device that gets more use is the TiVo but that is because all broadcast TV goes through that like a SPAM filter for TV. Bye bye adverts :-) Bwahahahahaha :D

BornAgainMac
Mar 26, 2010, 07:28 AM
Probably the best feature of Apple TV. If you have a lot of DVDs taking up a full bookshelf of space then you can place all that content into a drive the size of a deck of cards. Place it in an iTunes library and hook it up to your Mac or PC and stream it to your TV with easy navigation. Keep your DVDs from getting scratched and store them in the attic.

This is probably the best feature of Apple TV and it never gets mentioned. It is what the iPod did to music CDs.

Scarpad
Mar 26, 2010, 08:07 AM
These "Justify" your Apple TV Threads are getting tiring, look if you have no use for it nobody is making you buy one. I use it for the same reasons are the users above, its an extension of itunes, feeding my Ipod Touch and Ipad in a few weeks, and delivering the content to my TV and Stereo reciever, thats what it does.

cdavis11
Mar 26, 2010, 08:16 AM
I own one for a couple of reasons.

1) I don't want physical DVDs laying around anymore. I have ripped all DVDs and converted them (Handbrake, aTV setting) and now purchase content from the iTMS. When I want to watch a movie on the widescreen, I can...when I want to put it on my iphone for the plane...I can. When I want to put it on an ipod touch for the kids....I can. All digital, no DVDs to break/cases to lose. It's simplified my life in that respect.

2) Airtunes. A little known fact is that the aTV functions like an airport express with airtunes - you can send audio to it and have it connected to a stereo system just like an airport express. If you want to use the onscreen menus you can, if not - just leave the TV off and send audio with your desktop, laptop or direct it with your ipod remote.

belvdr
Mar 26, 2010, 08:23 AM
I only get one major network OTA and canceled DirecTV. Since I only watch a few shows, this saves me hundreds of dollars per year:

Original:
DirecTV - $90/month = $1080/year

New:
ATV Subscriptions = $150/year
NetFlix = $19/month = $228/year

Savings = $702/year

which is enough to pay for our auto insurance, home insurance, or a mortgage payment.

mstrze
Mar 26, 2010, 09:27 AM
I only get one major network OTA and canceled DirecTV. Since I only watch a few shows, this saves me hundreds of dollars per year:

Did the same thing for 6 months...DTV allowed us to put our plan on hiatus. It was awesome. Of course now I have approximately 6 months left on our contract before DTV is gone for good....although I expect them to really make us a sweet deal when I call to cancel. ;) It's going to take a lot though to keep us.

I really missed nothing by not having cable/sat for 6 months. We subscriber to our favs on ATV like you, and watched live OTA TV for free...and rented and bought some movies from ATV along the way. Saved us around $400 over the six months. :D

I second everyone else's reasons: It's ease of use to be able to call up your music and movies with the press of a button instead of loading in a disc. With ATV I was able to re-discover some music I had languishing on the HDD. $200 for such a simple way to add hundreds, nay THOUSANDS of hours of entertainment content to my home theater that just works right out of the box is priceless. It was well worth it.

belvdr
Mar 26, 2010, 09:31 AM
Another beauty of it is I can watch a new episode while traveling while my family can do the same at home on the ATV or Mac.

grawk
Mar 26, 2010, 11:49 PM
it's a steal just for the ability to hold 160gb of music with digital out at your stereo (compare to what it costs to add that benefit to an ipod dock)

it's a steal when paired with an iphone or ipod touch remote for watching movies from an itunes media server (easiest media server setup for my wife by far)

it's a steal because I don't have to rebuy dvds because the kids don't scratch them

ChrisA
Mar 27, 2010, 12:04 AM
I have little use for Hollywood movies. But I have lot of content I shot myself that I've like to put up on my TV. I'll buy an ATV when it can do 1080p.

illy123
Mar 27, 2010, 07:13 AM
I've been wondering that myself.

If you're an advanced user you would build a small mini-itx PC and load up ubuntu with boxee or hbmc live and then be able to watch any movie file with a much better interface.

If you're not very advanced then you could get something like a popcorn or sumvision network media player which will be cheaper and be able to play any file. You could even get an AV cable, Air Video, and use your iphone to stream videos onto your tv for something like £50

Edit:

Aha, people flash the firmware with boxee. That does make sense. Although the ATV still can't handle 1080p but I doubt many people have those on their HDs

ClassicBean
Mar 27, 2010, 08:45 AM
I love mine for two reasons:

1) Renting movies from iTunes. I can grab them in HD and they're ready to watch in literally just seconds. Beats going to Blockbuster or Rogers.

2) Airtunes. I can access the music on the Apple TV and play it through any speakers that are attached to any other Apple TV or Airport Express. Or I can select music from my laptop and play it through speakers that are connected to an Apple TV. It really is amazing, especially if you have an iPhone and control the music from there using the Apple Remote App.

Boom.

rxl125
Mar 27, 2010, 09:57 AM
Music, music and music...

GermanSuplex
Mar 27, 2010, 09:57 AM
Some people are unwavering on quality: they want 1080p, bells and whistles and will go through any setup to achieve it. That is understandable and a valid want/need for many people. But I am not one of them. I flashed my ATV with Boxee and other things once, but found little use for it and restored the ATV. I am perfectly happy with my h.264 encodes. I really like the interface. My only complaint is the sometimes sluggish response, but overall, I can live with it. It's still quickier than switching out discs.

I also love having all of the video podcasts available... I just watched a couple of full-length shows that are available as podcasts.

Digital Skunk
Mar 27, 2010, 12:09 PM
Probably the best feature of Apple TV. If you have a lot of DVDs taking up a full bookshelf of space then you can place all that content into a drive the size of a deck of cards. Place it in an iTunes library and hook it up to your Mac or PC and stream it to your TV with easy navigation. Keep your DVDs from getting scratched and store them in the attic.

This is probably the best feature of Apple TV and it never gets mentioned. It is what the iPod did to music CDs.

This is the primary reason I'd get an ATV. I've long since put my DVDs on the shelf and never opened them up again. My DVD player broke months ago, and now we just watch the Redbox DVDs on my Mac or pick one of our favorites from iTunes.

With an ATV, we'd just be sitting on the couch and watching it on the flat screen.

I have little use for Hollywood movies. But I have lot of content I shot myself that I've like to put up on my TV. I'll buy an ATV when it can do 1080p.

This is the second reason. If I ever needed to have a client in my home for a presentation or consultation I'd be able to pull up content I've shot and cut myself, or images I've captured.

With all of that said, I'd still just pay more for the Mac Mini and have a full fledged, internet surfing, DVD drive (or Blu-Ray in the future) having box.

iWoz
Mar 27, 2010, 12:18 PM
Thanks everyone for there feedback and educating me. I guess this is a pretty good idea if you want to save money on buying a hifi for a party, if you have surround sound? Juts play your itunes playlist via Apple TV?

wombat888
Mar 29, 2010, 02:26 PM
The Apple TV is my favorite gadget and by far my favorite gadget for the price. Given a choice between losing my iPod touch 64gb, Kindle and Apple TV - and assuming I couldn't replace them (otherwise it's simply a matter of price) - the Apple TV is what I'd like to lose the least.

Why it's great sneaks up on you. Specs don't tell the story. It just really fits lifestyle well.

- play your iTunes music on your home theater system, with big album art and song info displaying on the TV - the album art is physically bigger on my 46" TV than a vinyl album cover
- load and watch your personal videos and photos on your TV/theater system
- full-screen youtube
- flickr search and display
- buy iTunes music, music videos and movies via the Apple TV interface and play them back instantly
- rent iTunes movies in standard def (I think it's 480p) or high def (I think it's 720p). You have 30 days to start watching the movie. Once you start it, you have 24 hours to watch it one or more times. Popular movies will be $3.99/$4.99 standard/HD. Less popular movies are cheaper

If you have a universal remote, you can program that to control the Apple TV along with your other components.

Basically ... it does computer-like things without feeling like a computer. It is easier to use than your DVR. It zeroes in on the things that everyone would like to do on their TV and home theater system but may not have thought about.

It is not all things to all people - it's best to think of it as an appliance, not as a computer.

trip1ex
Mar 29, 2010, 04:19 PM
- load and watch your personal videos and photos on your TV/theater system

I wish ATV treated iMOvie like it does iPhoto. Just let me load projects and raw footage directly from it. I guess there's conversion issues and what not, but would be nice.