Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
56,611
19,359


MacNN reports on a number of new patents from Apple, one of which involves an interesting use of "widgets" alongside streaming video that would allow for more interactivity.

151540-pantent1-080207-3_300.gif


The August 2006 filing introduces the possbility of incorporating Dashboard-like Widgets alongside video content in the Apple TV interface. The Widgets could be triggered by the video itself and could be contextual:
"For example, while the user is viewing a musical performance a ticket widget can be displayed over the content or elsewhere in the user interface, which can be access by the user to purchase concert tickets or receive other information related to the concert or performer," Apple said. "In the example shown (below), the widget could be triggered by a marker in the content which corresponds with a portion of the concert where the performer is not performing, or can be based on a period of inactivity (e.g., the DVD player is placed on "pause"). In some implementations, the widget can be displayed as part of a DVD menu system."
Beyond this commercial usage, the system could also be used to incorporate live video chat during an event or provide live sports stats during a game.

Article Link
 

Squonk

macrumors 65816
Mar 15, 2005
1,370
14
This could be very, very slick! I look forward to see what :apple: has up it's black mock turtle-neck sleeve. :D
 

notnek

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2007
327
0
It would be nice to be watching the Cards beat the Cubs on my HDTV and have everyone's latest stats, as well as other games detailed stats show up. Could be a nice feature.
 

kjr39

macrumors 6502
Nov 26, 2004
374
3
Anyone else notice that all of Apple's new products are based around selling me content?

If all they are going to do with the widgets are use them to viral market to me, then no thanks.
 

Rojo

macrumors 65816
Sep 26, 2006
1,328
241
Barcelona
As long as it didn't interefere with people's viewing (something that randomly pops up out of nowhere, like those annoying ads in the corner for other shows within shows), and it was more of something that showed up when *I* chose to get more information/interaction, then I would totally welcome something like this!
 

syklee26

macrumors 6502a
Jul 26, 2005
586
1,262
why not widgets like Mac OSX? just press a key button (play + menu) or something during playback popping up weather, stock and etc.

just let it be imported via iTunes or just make several widgets built in for easy access.
 

Diggity-Dan

macrumors member
Feb 6, 2008
31
0
Toronto, Canada
Commercial Alternative

This idea seems like a good alternative to commercials and may be a good incentive to encourage more free content on :apple:TV. Studios and networks currently are holding back on distributing content online because right now there's no real good way of collecting advertising revenue. This may be the solution - and it seems like it could be implemented seamlessly in a way that is much less intrusive to the viewing experience and could actually be quite useful for a lot of people. However, I could also see networks interested in using this technology for adding more conventional pop-up ads to their content - but I really think they'd get the most out of it if they make it as useful and unobtrusive for the viewer as possible.

Edit: This could also be an interesting supplement to product placement. Imagine you're watching one of your favorite shows (streaming for free through your :apple:TV, since the networks are gaining revenue from this new feature) and you see a product being used that you're interested in. With a click of your Apple remote, your credit card is charged and the product is on the way to your house. And the networks could potentially gain additional revenue for each customer they deliver. No more need for conventional ads - or even going outside!
 

davidje13

macrumors member
Dec 4, 2007
31
0
Warwick, UK
The terms of the patent must be very specific, since Joost (peer-to-peer TV.. ish) has been doing this for about a year now (possibly longer I can't remember). Although their widgets are chosen by the user manually like in OS X rather than automatically.
 

MacFly123

macrumors 68020
Dec 25, 2006
2,340
0
Thats exactly what I see future in TV is all about

Amen to that :) I also thought it was interesting that they elude to it having a DVD drive :) Not to mention someone would develop a TIVO widget :) WOW, this is the future of media and I WANT IT :)
 

FreeState

macrumors 68000
Jun 24, 2004
1,730
112
San Diego, CA
I think this is just an idea - not something that we will see any time soon - it was submitted in 2006 - 1 1/2 years ago and has reference to a DVD player (not part of the AppleTV) etc...
 

dokein

macrumors newbie
May 16, 2006
23
0
useless w/o tuner

This is a pretty useless feature unless AppleTV Take 3 includes a HDTV tuner. Who wants live statistics for a recording of a sporting event? How many people actually record live sporting events? If the interactive features are limited to purchased iTunes store content, it's more of a pointless novelty than the "bonus" features on your average DVD.
 

Diggity-Dan

macrumors member
Feb 6, 2008
31
0
Toronto, Canada
This is a pretty useless feature unless AppleTV Take 3 includes a HDTV tuner. Who wants live statistics for a recording of a sporting event? How many people actually record live sporting events? If the interactive features are limited to purchased iTunes store content, it's more of a pointless novelty than the "bonus" features on your average DVD.

Do you really think it will be that long before they're streaming live sports online to :apple:TV? Especially if this feature gets implemented.
 

Popeye206

macrumors 68040
Sep 6, 2007
3,148
836
NE PA USA
I say cool!

This sounds really cool... and I think leads to bigger and better things in the future. Like another poster pointed out... it would be nice to see this have an HD tuner... BUT... maybe Apple (or other media companies) may offer first run on-demand content that would allow for some interactivity... Hummm... almost like a virtual TIVO??? Think of it like Pod Casts for your Apple TV. Interesting if you let your mind expand some. :)

As for the comment on Games... go buy a PS3 or Wii if you want games! :D
 

notnek

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2007
327
0
Who wants live statistics for a recording of a sporting event? How many people actually record live sporting events?

Two Things.

1) The article suggests that the stats feature would be for live sporting events, not recordings of sporting events.

2) I record many sporting events. A lot of the time, I'm forced to record Cardinals games and watch them when I get off work. I have friends who recorded the superbowl, and then watched it later.
 

kornyboy

macrumors 68000
Sep 27, 2004
1,529
0
Knoxville, TN (USA)
Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0 Mobile/4A93 Safari/419.3)

I really don't care for ads. I hope this isn't focused as a way to place ads on content that is paid for on an a-la-carte basis. I do understand it for free content, but not for the stuff the consumer pays for.
 

neven

macrumors 6502a
Oct 10, 2006
815
0
Portland, OR
This may be a technical point, but I think your use of the word "developing" in the title is out of place.

I work in the software development department of a large firm, and a patent application like this would not be considered evidence of any "development" here. "Design", maybe; even that would be a bit too strong.

"Development" would imply that Apple really has actual architects, designers, and programmers working on actual software versions of these patents. All that's evident from these applications is that someone at Apple is at least brainstorming these ideas and exploring them as possible projects. They MAY already have this software running on AppleTVs in the lab (thought I doubt it) but the patent application doesn't imply any kind of "Development".

I'm pointing this out because when I first saw your headline, I thought you had news about Apple hiring developers for this project, or inside info from employees working on it.
 

naroola

macrumors member
Sep 28, 2007
99
3
Chicago, IL
This is a pretty useless feature unless AppleTV Take 3 includes a HDTV tuner. Who wants live statistics for a recording of a sporting event? How many people actually record live sporting events? If the interactive features are limited to purchased iTunes store content, it's more of a pointless novelty than the "bonus" features on your average DVD.

A tuner? Come on... Apple won't include Tuners. Look at the model they just built with streaming content straight to Apple TV, bypassing the computer. Apple TV will evolve to stream live events such as certain TV shows and sports. Of course this would be US only at first since a lot of places, especially internationally, don't have real fast internet service... yet.

The streaming versions will have commercials, as they are on TV, anyways.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.