Can anyone list possible software "enhancements" to Apple TV?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by kavika411, Apr 26, 2007.

  1. kavika411 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 8, 2006
    I assume everyone saw the posting which says:

    "Similarly, they stated that periodic updates and enhancements will be provided at no charge to Apple TV customers."

    I don't purport to understand software and firmware, but I am very interested in where Apple TV is going. That quote indicates to me that they think they can do a lot with software updates as opposed to a new version of Apple TV. So, my question is, can someone with a head for software start a list for the rest of us showing what enhancements can be made just through a software update? I'm not talking about simple user interface enhancements, or new ways to view your photo library; I'm talking bigger stuff - easy, true 5.1, the highest HD resolution possible, hard drive enhancements, etc.

  2. balamw Moderator


    Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2005
    New England
    Your list is pretty representative, but you left out the most obvious one which has already been rumored.

    Games. (Simple, iPod like games).

  3. drumpat01 macrumors 6502


    Jul 31, 2004
    Denton, TX
    As far as what they could do with just a software update, they could get into all different kids of codecs so it could play avi files or any other kind of files. They could as you said bump the resolution up. They could allow you to buy stuff directly off iTunes from the Apple TV. Remember this has internet access, so anything you can do online the Apple TV can theoretically do. It does have that USB port which could possible be used for keyboard and mouse. Ive seen plug-ins that pull in RSS feeds too and I'd love that. So those are a few of my ideas.
  4. Peace macrumors Core


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    The most obvious ones would be the renting of movies and buying music from the iTunes store.
  5. FreeState macrumors 68000


    Jun 24, 2004
    San Diego, CA
    I think the biggest thing - that no one has talked much about - is that AppleTV has Bluetooth in it but its not used. So I think Apple is saying some software update will enable this hardware to work (like the Wireless N). Then Apple can sell things like bluetooth game controllers and keyboards...

    Picture of bluetooth working once its been hacked:
  6. chatin macrumors 6502a


    May 27, 2005

    I have an xbox 360 hooked in for games that really aren't my style. Deep down, I think Apple knows what I want to play.

  7. OldSkoolNJ macrumors 6502


    Jul 10, 2006
    The :apple: TV does not have BlueTooth buiilnt to it. The guy just hacked it so that when he plugged a DLink bluetooth dongle into the USB port iw worked.

  8. FreeState macrumors 68000


    Jun 24, 2004
    San Diego, CA

    Check out the system profile photo when you have a 10.4.9 running on the AppleTV box - it has Bluetooth listed in hardware, not as connected via USB.

    and here is another view.

    Who knows maybe Im reading it all wrong -
  9. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    I think what they really need to add is more codecs and it shouldn't be too hard to finagle the rights for them. If they'd add DivX and xvid more people would be willing to buy it. I think both of those companies would be interested in their codecs being used, just to get the name out there. These are both popular formats and not having to void your warranty to install them would be really nice.
  10. GregA macrumors 65816

    Mar 14, 2003
    Sydney Australia
    I certainly think we'll see some software updates to AppleTV that give us more functionality.

    So far, the answers have been:
    * DivX/XviD support (all different kinds of codecs)
    * Bluetooth support (debate on whether it has bluetooth hardware)
    * Games. (Simple, iPod like games)
    * renting of movies and buying music directly off iTunes from the :apple:TV
    * bump the resolution up.
    * internet access (anything you can do online the :apple:TV can theoretically do).
    * pull in RSS feeds

    I agree largely. Not so sure on the resolution bump - we may see
    * 720p30 (but we're not going to get to 1080p)
    Also, Quicktime converts 1920x1080i to 960x540p30 (easy de-interlace)
    * how about 1280x540p30?

    I'd also look for
    * streaming slideshows
    * access to multiple iTunes accounts simultaneously
    * streaming DVD from remote Mac
    * internet TV streaming & internet radio streaming (linked to "buy song now"?)
    * greater standalone functionality (limited!)
    (eg: could I select a TV show for download from work, to have it download at home direct to AppleTV? or select TV show from laptop and then turn laptop off (or take to client), letting AppleTV download the show?)
    * playing (sync?/stream?) from a .Mac repository of shows and songs
  11. Aegelward macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2005
    i find myself hoping they allow browsing tv series like frontrow 'classic' shows divided into season, and episode number going incrementally
  12. blackbones macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2003
    I second the streaming radio.

    I often play some of the preset radio stations in iTunes while working at my desk and would love to be able to listen to these while working around the house etc.
  13. indraunt@gmail. macrumors newbie

    Mar 27, 2007
    I'd like a weather display.
    BUT! Not In Australia, by far the best source of weather info is the Bureau of Meteorology, so that's where I'd like the info pulled from. Of course, ideally you'd have an option to select where you want your weather info to come from.
  14. GregA macrumors 65816

    Mar 14, 2003
    Sydney Australia
    Actually, a really big thing we left out was
    * Dashboard Widgets

    They could be synchronised to your Mac - to get your location for weather for instance. Only 1/4 of widgets would be suitable for use without a keyboard I guess.
  15. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    I'd like to see the following updates myself...

    A way to restart the device from the menu system. I hate having to unplug it to restart it. I sometimes have to restart it because the audio/video goes out of sync and a restart tends to fix that.

    Better sorting features for movies. Being able to group by genre, year, or even submenus by letter range (A-D, E-H, etc) for people with a lot of movies.

    Better sorting features for TV shows. Under each show there should be a Season submenu if more than one season exists. Sorting in chronological and reverse chronological order would be nice too.

    Music should add compilations. I haven't played with the music area too much but things that are in a compilation in iTunes should be in Apple TV also. I don't believe they were.
  16. MacBoobsPro macrumors 603


    Jan 10, 2006
    I'd like to see a simple enhancement (among others), this enhancement would be to be able to create our own submenus. I have dvds that are not strictly 'movies/films' they are documentaries and or live performances etc. I'd like to be able to put these files into a category other than movies. Think this would initially have to be achieved in iTunes for it to work on ATV.
  17. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    What about Growl-like notifications, when you receive mail...
  18. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    Widgets would be great, many of them would be useful to have in your living room. For the ones that need a keyboard Apple could either build in a virtual keyboard (similar to game systems) or allow their functionality via USB or BT.
  19. MovieCutter macrumors 68040


    May 3, 2005
    Washington, DC
    Widgets could be useful

    iTunes Music Store right on AppleTV would be invaluable and would further drive the "impulse-buy" sales of various media.

    Small thing: I want my music to keep playing when I'm looking for other forms of media on my AppleTV. It stops as soon as I go to the main menu and select videos.
  20. plinden macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2004
    I don't have an :apple:TV, but apparently you can restart it by holding down the Menu and - buttons on the remote until the Apple TV flashes a yellow light. Does that work?
  21. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus


    Oct 8, 2002
    The Bamboo Forest
    That did work. It restarts it then asks you which language and resolution to put it in. It then asks if you want to restart the Apple TV, Run Diagnostics, or Restore The Factory Settings.

    Not exactly what I wanted (I'd rather it just restart) but good enough for me! Plus now I know where to find those two other options.
  22. MajereXYU macrumors regular

    May 11, 2005

    The olden days when people actually took time to read the instruction manuals!

    What a lot of wonders there is to find in those strange contraptions.
  23. whooleytoo macrumors 603


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    I was going to suggest Slingbox - like functionality, but it would make more sense to stream directly from the Mac instead of from the Apple TV. I believe the PS3 now has a similar feature.

    I'd be wary of feature-creep with the Apple TV - it's designed to be a way of viewing & listening to Internet-originated content on your TV, not to be a TV workstation used with a 5 button remote control.
  24. kfury77 macrumors regular


    Jan 9, 2007
    Osaka, Japan
    Software suggestions for a firmware upgrade

    * Support for streaming internet radio

    * support for browsing and buying via the itunes music store

    * music should continue to play when leaving the music section to the main menu.

    * add option to change how often the artwork flips from side to side.

    * option to subscribe to RSS feeds

    * support for third-party IPTV, e.g. youtube, joost?

    * ability to download podcasts you've subscribed to right to the appletv, why should i have to turn on my pc to sync them to the appletv?

    * option to rate and change ratings of tracks

    * more codec support! Why ohy why is there no support for Apple Quicktime .MOV files! I was very disappointed to first sync my AppleTV last month to find that only 2 of the 100 or so video files I have on my computer already are appletv friendly MP4 files. Quite a lot of these files even play in iTunes already. Please allow for MOV and maybe AVI. I'm not too bothered about DVIX that much and don't expect Apple to add it.

    * simple games (music quiz could be fun!)

    * ability to manually choose (drag and drop) which content to go on to Apple TV (why does it **have** to be automatic).

    * easier option to turn the device to standby (holding play for 6 seconds is a hassle)

    * dashboard widgets (weather display would be great!)
  25. danerh macrumors member

    Nov 16, 2006
    Dvd Streaming?!

    The biggest problem with the apple TV in my eyes is that it doesn't play DVD's... if as suggested earlier you could stream DVD's from your computer, then its functionality would be complete without taking away from its small form.

    AND TV shows into seasons is a must...

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