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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:17 PM   #1
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New Apple TV Offers 8 GB of Internal Storage, 256 MB RAM






The teardown experts at iFixit have gotten their hands on the new Apple TV and have already begun opening the device up to have a look at what's inside. Regarding the most crucial piece of information, iFixit has already discovered that the device carries 8 GB of onboard NAND flash storage, an important piece of data that Apple has chosen not to speak about publicly, as the device's focus is on streaming rather than storing content. The new Apple TV also offers 256 MB of RAM, the same as the iPad and iPod touch but less than the iPhone 4's 512 MB.

The Apple TV's onboard storage is notable in part for those who are seeking to bring new functionality to the iOS-based device through the jailbreaking process. And with Steve Jobs having noted that Apple could launch an App Store for the Apple TV when the time is right, limited onboard storage will obviously play a role in determining what types of applications could make their way to the device.

Article Link: New Apple TV Offers 8 GB of Internal Storage, 256 MB RAM
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:18 PM   #2
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Sweet, that really means we can put in something useful...
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:19 PM   #3
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Although some of that space will probably be for buffering streaming videos, I agree that this is the best proof yet that apps will eventually come to the Apple TV.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:21 PM   #4
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We've already seen how 256 MB of RAM can constrict apps in iOS (witness Safari on iPad's terrible cacheing). With the Apple TV it would only be worse, as the resolution of the screen, which almost certainly uses RAM for buffers, is larger. There's about 17% more pixels involved in the Apple TV over the iPad. But yeah, I agree, you certainly don't need 8 GB for video stream buffering purposes at 720p.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:21 PM   #5
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I guessed it right. For $99, it must have at least an 8gb.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:22 PM   #6
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And it costs less than the 8 GB iPod Nano but can play video................

Weird.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:22 PM   #7
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Naturally that's there... what? You thought there was NO memory and it just streamed directly? Come on. It has to be able to hold at least ONE full movie.

How big are most 90 minute HD movie files? 4 GB?
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:22 PM   #8
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considering the 3gs is still sold with "only" 8GB, this doesn't seem too limiting for a device meant to stream. Plenty of Apps can fit in 8GB of space. I have over 100 apps, and they take up just over 1GB on my iPhone.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:25 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by HiRez View Post
We've already seen how 256 MB of RAM can constrict apps in iOS (witness Safari on iPad's terrible cacheing). With the Apple TV it would only be worse, as the resolution of the screen, which almost certainly uses RAM for buffers, is larger. There's about 17% more pixels involved in the Apple TV over the iPad. But yeah, I agree, you certainly don't need 8 GB for video stream buffering purposes at 720p.
The only example of poor performance you provided is a feature that Apple TV doesn't have.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:26 PM   #10
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8 GB?

That's wierd. Unless...

HELLO APPLE TV APPS!
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:27 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Lesser Evets View Post
Naturally that's there... what? You thought there was NO memory and it just streamed directly? Come on. It has to be able to hold at least ONE full movie.

How big are most 90 minute HD movie files? 4 GB?
You only need a buffer, you don't need to store the whole movie.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lesser Evets View Post
Naturally that's there... what? You thought there was NO memory and it just streamed directly? Come on. It has to be able to hold at least ONE full movie.

How big are most 90 minute HD movie files? 4 GB?
Not really, as it is not meant to work offline. You only need enough to buffer out network glitches and avoid dropped frames or pauses. 8 GB is way overkill for that purpose, probably 1 GB would be plenty. H.264 video at 720p, let's say they encode the video at 10 Mbps (which is high, it's probably half of that), that's about 13 minutes per GB, more than enough buffer for a smooth stream.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:29 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Lesser Evets View Post
Naturally that's there... what? You thought there was NO memory and it just streamed directly? Come on. It has to be able to hold at least ONE full movie.

How big are most 90 minute HD movie files? 4 GB?
I don't think anyone expected that. (Where would you put the OS, potential for apps, etc.) In fact, I expected it to have about enough to buffer a whole 720p movie, if necessary, which is about what it has.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:29 PM   #14
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"Limited" Geez, 8GB is a lot. But then I guess the author of this pieces is rather young.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:29 PM   #15
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Sweet! TV App Store!
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:29 PM   #16
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The only example of poor performance you provided is a feature that Apple TV doesn't have.
Yet. And the specific app isn't the point, the point is more pixels = more RAM consumed = less room for application data.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:30 PM   #17
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Yes, apps don't take that much room, so partial storage of a movie is the biggest space hog, and there's room enough for some apps and their respective configuration data.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:30 PM   #18
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8 gigs is a lot. I think you could just download content from the web and store it for streaming later. My T1 is finicky at times and I personally do not like the idea of always depending on either crap stored on my computer or streaming.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:31 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by karlwig View Post
8 GB?

That's wierd. Unless...

HELLO APPLE TV APPS!
YESSSSSSSSSSSSS can't wait!
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:32 PM   #20
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You only need a buffer, you don't need to store the whole movie.
I would think that in order to provide a good movie/tv show experience you would want to be able to store at least one complete video.

What if for some reason you want to rewind back beyond whats buffered in ram. "Buffering..." ?? and then if you want to fast forward back to where you were if you just wanted to see if you missed something. "Buffering...."

It would make sense, to me at least, that it would download the entire video to the local storage, and "stream" off of that (as soon as enough was downloaded to start, like how the current ATV works if you purchase via the hardware). Seems that would provide the best overall viewing experience.

While I know many are "App crazy" and it might be a nice thing to have, the 8gb could also be used to cache additional rentals (ie if you rent multiple tv episodes, or multiple movies within your viewing period). It would be both beneficial to the viewer and Apple to cache as much of the video as possible. Less demand on their network for those that don't watch a show strictly beginning to end once (rewinding, re-watching, pausing for a long period of time, etc...). If they do indeed cache much if not all of the video locally, 8gb is not really that much. Considering Star Trek in HD is a 4.24gb file. Consider again multiple movies rented, and/or longer length videos (4gb may have been too little, and 8gb may have been the next reasonable size of storage to include for any number of reasons).

Last edited by tkatz; Sep 29, 2010 at 02:40 PM.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:32 PM   #21
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Shouldn't The RAM Be Like This?

iPad > Apple TV > iPhone > iPod Touch

instead of

iPod Touch = Apple TV = iPad < iPhone

Apple has not Spec'd the RAM to go with the functionality of these devices.....
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:33 PM   #22
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8 GB is not much (at all) for apps.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:34 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Corbin052198 View Post

And it costs less than the 8 GB iPod Nano but can play video................

Weird.
But you can't use it on the road as an iPod - it has no build-in battery.
Also, you can't use it as a watch like the iPod Nano. Not only do you need an external display, you also can't bind it to your arm in any way like with the clip on the Nano and a little string.

Other than that... it's light and thin enough to fit into your backpack and take it with you somewhere. Just not thin enough to fit into your wallet, like a Nano does.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:35 PM   #24
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My 12" PowerBook came with 256MB, it was even embedded into the mobo, thats how gangsta it was. Chewed through Panther too.
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Old Sep 29, 2010, 02:35 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiRez View Post
Not really, as it is not meant to work offline. You only need enough to buffer out network glitches and avoid dropped frames or pauses. 8 GB is way overkill for that purpose, probably 1 GB would be plenty. H.264 video at 720p, let's say they encode the video at 10 Mbps (which is high, it's probably half of that), that's about 13 minutes per GB, more than enough buffer for a smooth stream.
Maybe, but the buffer starts almost immediately arguing against the idea of pre-loading a lot of content.

Quote:
Originally Posted by karlwig View Post
8 GB?

That's wierd. Unless...

HELLO APPLE TV APPS!
This is a nice idea. But at a certain point you have to wonder why someone just doesn't use a computer?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by HiRez View Post
We've already seen how 256 MB of RAM can constrict apps in iOS (witness Safari on iPad's terrible cacheing). With the Apple TV it would only be worse, as the resolution of the screen, which almost certainly uses RAM for buffers, is larger. There's about 17% more pixels involved in the Apple TV over the iPad. But yeah, I agree, you certainly don't need 8 GB for video stream buffering purposes at 720p.
That's true. Apple has always purposely crippled their devices with limited ram. Otherwise you wouldn't want to upgrade would you?!
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