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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:04 PM   #1
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'Apple TV Air' Concept Imagines a Simple HDMI Dongle




With rumors of a revamped Apple TV circulating over the past few months, German magazine Curved has been exploring some concepts to help get discussion rolling, beginning earlier this month with a new box similar to the current one but with styling similar to Apple's latest iOS devices and with a versatile iPod touch-like remote.

In its latest concept, Curved follows the trend of Google's Chromecast, Roku's Streaming Stick, and Amazon's rumored device to picture the next Apple TV as a simple dongle that plugs into an HDMI port on the back of the user's television set.

"Apple TV Air" concept (bottom) size comparison with current Apple TV and remote (top)
The concept envisions the "Apple TV Air" package containing two similarly sized devices: the dongle with a cap for the HDMI connector and a separate remote offering the same button configuration as on the current Apple TV remote. Both devices would be made of plastic to allow for a Bluetooth wireless connection to control the dongle hidden away behind the television set.

"Apple TV Air" dongle plugged into HDMI port
Apple has been rumored to be exploring a number of enhancements to the Apple TV, including enhanced game support that could see the launch of an App Store for the device. Apple has also been rumored to be looking at integrating AirPort base station functionality for the next Apple TV. Depending on how aggressive Apple wants to be with the new device's capabilities, it may be a stretch for the company to fit all of the necessary components into a dongle, but Curved's concept serves as a good focal point for discussion about directions Apple could take.

Article Link: 'Apple TV Air' Concept Imagines a Simple HDMI Dongle
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:06 PM   #2
Klae17
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Not everything needs the Air moniker or to be smaller. We need a device that has gaming capabilities, controller support, and fast WIFI AC streaming with more content. If Apple has to double the size, so be it!
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:06 PM   #3
lewisd25
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The dongle is too wide and will block other HDMI ports. Fail.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:06 PM   #4
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OMG, Apple copying Google.. Blah, blah, blah!!1! Apple can't innovate, doom3d...
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:07 PM   #5
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I would welcome that concept if functionality is not reduced. Clearly you're losing optical audio out, except passed through the TV, among other things (Ethernet, though not critical.)
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:07 PM   #6
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Pretty interesting and logical rumor/concept.

Can't wait for a revamped interface.
I actually liked it prior to the square "channels"
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:07 PM   #7
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Reminds me of..
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:08 PM   #8
troop231
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Would actually look more like this, considering power over HDMI hasn't really gotten anywhere.

Thumb resize.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:08 PM   #9
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I personally hate dongle form factors. I have a home theatre set up that is already cramped. I could not fit a stick out the back of my A/V Receiver at this time. I can't understand why people use the speakers from their televisions today. The speakers are so weak compared to what you can get with even a cheap 2.1 set up.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:09 PM   #10
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The mockup looks cool for light stuff, but I'd like to see a set top box version that looks like the New Mac Pro design if it needs a fan, but hopefully with a heatsink that attaches right to the case so it doesn't need a fan and then just keep the current design but make it with (Liquid?)metal. That'd be cool.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:09 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewisd25 View Post
The dongle is too wide and will block other HDMI ports. Fail.
It's a concept. It's never going to happen and look like this.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:09 PM   #12
BJMRamage
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but does Apple want to "Hide" their device?

Normally Apple loves to display their products.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:10 PM   #13
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so an apple chromecast?
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:10 PM   #14
lewisd25
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Originally Posted by OldSchoolMacGuy View Post
It's a concept. It's never going to happen and look like this.
That's obvious.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:11 PM   #15
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I thought the AppleTV is/was already small & light enough. If you want to hide the AppleTV it is trivial to attach a velcro strip and hide it behind the tv, on the back of the TV, under a tv stand, etc...

In fact If Apple wanted to make the size bigger to fit in more horse-power I'd be all for it getting even as big as the original (silver) Apple TV. Really what I'm saying is, that although small can be nice, at the end of the day features, content, and ease of use will be what people will care the most about.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:12 PM   #16
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So you can no longer connect the aTV dongle to an ethernet cable? Hah! Yeah, no thanks.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:12 PM   #17
SuperRob
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewisd25 View Post
The dongle is too wide and will block other HDMI ports. Fail.
Not to mention that such an implementation would require MHL. Most people can figure out if they have the right shaped port on their TV, or alternatively, know what HDMI is. Hardly ANYONE knows what MHL is, and not every TV with HDMI supports MHL (in fact, relatively few do).
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arkmannj View Post
I thought the AppleTV is/was already small & light enough. If you want to hide the AppleTV it is trivial to attach a velcro strip and hide it behind the tv, on the back of the TV, under a tv stand, etc...
The current aTV wants to be visible for the IR controller.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:18 PM   #19
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Apple TV already too small...

The Apple TV is already too small. Have you tried stack one with an Airport express. They are too light to stop the cables from lifting the units and stopping them from falling around, usually the floor or down the side of my other units.

Currently it's a case of style over function.

And why do I need an Airport Express they could just add the software to the Apple TV to give it the Airport functionality. Also a few extra Ethernet sockets would be good too.... I wouldn't have to run a mini router then.

Last edited by anthonylambert; Mar 24, 2014 at 02:29 PM.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:27 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by lewisd25 View Post
The dongle is too wide and will block other HDMI ports. Fail.
How dare a company that isn't Apple make a concept product that's too wide. Silly German überpfail.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:37 PM   #21
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Someone's gone to the effort of making a too wide dongle and not realise that perhaps if Apple were to make such a thing the remote probably be all touch

D- must try harder.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:38 PM   #22
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Remote

I love the current remote made from a machined block of aluminium. It has some weight and it's the proper length for a remote, it feels like quality when you hold it.

The remote from the concept is not only way too short to be comfortable to hold, it looks like a low-cost plastic remote that comes with some no-name, low-quality electronics you can buy on sale at Wal-Mart.

As for the next version of the AppleTV, I wouldn't mind a 33% size increase as long as we get more features. I already have to use an optical-to-analog converter box to plug in my headphones, if the next model is HDMI-only then I won't buy it.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:48 PM   #23
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Why?

There's no benefit in miniaturising the ATV to the size of a dongle. Especially when HDMI doesn't provide power. So, why would Apple do it? Surely they want their stuff to be designed, visible and oooodled over.
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:52 PM   #24
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Old Mar 24, 2014, 02:53 PM   #25
rdas7
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Hey let's draw pictures of products instead of actually making them!

Ok congratulations for being able to use a 3D program. Unfortunately you failed to understand a thing about the product you were modeling.

"At CURVED/labs we are one step ahead" : Thanks for highlighting your technical prowess by stating it'd be made out of plastic and have bluetooth "to allow for a Bluetooth wireless connection to control the dongle hidden away behind the television set", but forgetting to add to your pictures how your innovative design would be powered. Maybe there should be a caption "Wireless power solution goes here ->"?

Pretty sure that anything Apple release will look 0% like anything you've suggested. But thanks for contributing to the discussion!
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