"Hobby" No More After Next Release? My Apple TV Fantasy

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by BoulderBum, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. BoulderBum macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Sad/pathetic that I think of these things, I know, but I had a bit of a vision the other day.

    In my mind, it goes a little something like this...

    Apple announces:
    • The death of the 24-hour rental rule
    • Some big movie deal, like bringing Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Back to the Future to iTunes
    • Apple TV gets an App Store (w/casual games like the iPhone has)
    • A new Apple media server comes out at the same time
    • They start advertising the heck out of the thing on TV

    In my dream they do all this, then make a big official announcement that "Apple TV is no longer a hobby!" and the unit gets snatched up like an iPhone on opening day. :D

    Hey, it could happen! I figure the time is ripe, too. Apple announced robust rental revenue and 3x year over year sales of the Apple TV in the last earnings call, and Netflix is really stepping up the game with all the partnerships they have with X-Box, Roku, TV manufacturers and the like. Apple needs something big to take over/drive the movie download market.
     
  2. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

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    #2
    Apple needs to partner with Netflix, not compete with them. Add Netflix streaming to ATV and the sales will explode. I would like to add Netflix streaming to a TV, but I don't want to 1) pay $100 for a box that does nothing else, 2) spend $350 on a new BD player when I already have one, or 3) buy an Xbox 360.

    I DO want to stream all of these darned videos I have in my iTunes library to a TV. Considering the lacklusterness of Apple's video rentals (mainly the 24-hour rule), it would be a huge improvement. Apple could pitch to rent via Apple if you want to take it with you, stream through Netflix, or buy through Apple.

    If they could add access to stuff like Hulu and all the major network streaming sites, then have a DVD/Blu-ray option, I'm in. Unless they change the remote control, I could give a crap about any games on it.
     
  3. BoulderBum thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    Good call on the 24-hour rule thing. That restriction really sucks (it seems like I don't get to finish a good 10% of the movies I watch).

    I added it to my list of items in the dream announcement.
     
  4. packalott macrumors newbie

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    #4
    Does not Boxee address most of those concerns outlined above?

    I've only just started using it, and only on my macbook, not a big tv, etc. . . but i'm pretty impressed with the service.

    -jason
     
  5. iSaygoodbye macrumors 6502a

    iSaygoodbye

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    #5

    the games wont happen the remote cant do games. The 24 hour rental rule is pretty much the same on xbox too and if you rent a movie how many times are you gonna watch it in 30 days?They have the new animated star wars and the new indiana jones
     
  6. BoulderBum thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Interesting note about the games: Apple has a patent on a Wii-like controller for Apple TV, and some industrious college kids discovered an API that lets you control an Apple TV in some of the latest iPhone/iPod Touch code.

    You're right that Apple would need more than the current remote to make it happen, but I can see a device that interacts with Apple TV somehow (either over WiFi or via a gadget attached to the USB port), or some new Apple TV hardware to make it happen.

    I don't need 30 days to watch rentals, but, say, three days would be nice You figure it's just like your standard video store (I seriously have either not finished or rented movies twice because I didn't have time to finish the whole thing). Plus I wish you could rent on Apple TV at the same time as Blockbuster.

    Also, I think the pièce de résistance of a new Apple TV launch would be to get the rights to some super-classic movies with mass appeal. The new Indiana Jones is okay, but it's not the caliber of classics of the originals. Same with the new Star Wars cartoon (which I haven't even bothered seeing, to be honest).
     
  7. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

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    #7
    That would be good, but they have to put some sort of restriction for how long you rent movies?
    Here's what I hope for in the next Apple TV upgrade, including the stuff you mentioned:
    - 160GB $249
    - 240GB $349
    - Safari with Flash; kinda something in between OS X Safari and Mobile Safari
    - Ability to use keyboard for Safari
    - Ability to use iPod touch or iPhone to control games on the Apple TV
    - Ability to use play music and videos off of an iPod or iPhone through USB port
    - Two USB ports
     
  8. JonHimself macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

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    #8
    I think we'd be likely to see something more like Hulu than Netflix. I don't really know how Netflix works but I understand it's a subscription and then you can rent as much as you want in that month? That would compete with Apple's model of selling the same content (unless they split the money made on AppleTV Netflix subscriptions or something). With Hulu, at least in the US, you would get lower-quality streaming with ads OR you could buy the same content from Apple and get better quality with no ads. Regardless, I just want them to do something to make AppleTV the iPod of video delivery*.

    * Wishful thinking, I know. I'm thinking more in terms of them just have at least 50% of the market, not that it commands a ridiculously high percentage of the market like the iPod does.
     
  9. JonHimself macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

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    #9
    As for some of the other things mentioned, I think that an App Store (at least for now) is too ambitious. I'd say start with Safari and something more like Dashboard with weather, news, sports scores, etc available to download and then if that succeeds, then push an App Store. I would think they would need to look at upgrading the hardware in the Apple TV to make a little more powerful if they plan on allowing more software (like Safari) to be run on it.
    I think the greatest feature that the AppleTV could add would be a one-touch (or as close as possible to one-touch) method of importing existing DVDs that you own. Unfortunately that also competes with their method of selling content but I think the more people you have purchase an AppleTV, the more opportunity you have to sell the content available to AppleTV owners.
     
  10. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

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    #10
    Hulu = add-supported streaming video; all TV shows; free
    Netflix = Pay service; most accounts are X DVD/Blu-rays at a time and unlimited free streaming of movies and TV shows; ZERO advertising in the streaming video

    That's the lowdown between those two. Both of them compete on some level with Apple, but neither is a straight-up competitor. I don't have to pay to use Hulu, but I have to pay for iTunes TV shows. I don't own the Hulu shows, I do own the iTunes TV shows. Considering most people want a combination of those two (who here hasn't watched streaming video AND bought home videos?), the thought of Apple including it all isn't farfetched.

    I personally want to have all of the major streaming portals available at a TV without hooking up a computer. I buy very few TV shows from iTunes -- mostly stuff like documentaries (I'm watching "The Universe" from History right now). I'm not going to spend $x on TV show downloads on iTunes when I can get the DVD set cheaper (I seek sales) and would still have a highly portable hard copy after using HandBrake. I know a lot of people like the convenience of just clicking "download" to have an entire TV show season, but I'm way too skeptical of a hard drive or two failing.
     
  11. nevermind50 macrumors member

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    #11
    I don't think Apple should make the device any more complicated than it is right now. I would like to see access to streaming services like BBC iPlayer (as standard rather than a hack), which is fine to just catch up with something you've missed, and more, higher quality paid CONTENT. That's what it's all about... that's how iPod became ubiquitous, not because it was the most functional MP3 player on the market.

    That would be illegal in most countries, so it won't happen. Therefore, your point about competing with iTS is moot.
     
  12. nevermind50 macrumors member

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    #12
    Here in the UK, we have a 48 hour period, I find that enough to finish a Movie.

    Agreed, content is king.

    Would this really drive the sales of ATV though?

    It would have to be the same price/form factor as the Time Capsule. I'd buy one in a heartbeat, but not sure if the market exists for such a product. Apple may just stick with their distributed model, at least for now :(

    They have to do something with all those $$ :)
     
  13. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

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    #13
    The way I see :apple:tv going:

    · More than one computer allowed to sync at the same time
    · Casual Games (like the iPods not like the App Store)
    · Expandable, Apple, make a reciever so we can stream :apple:tv's content to all our TV's in the house. Imagine you need to buy 3 :apple:tv's!
    · Web Browsing
    · Improved Photo Browsing and ability to sream videos from MobileMe and Flickr
    · Improved UI

    Ams.
     
  14. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

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    #14
    Here's a couple other things in addition to what Ams stated,

    - Email
    - Calculator
    - Calender

    Kinda like a desktop verion of the iPod touch, but with mass storage.
    And Ams, how do you expect to type on web browser?
     
  15. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

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    #15
    On screen keys (like when searching the Store or YouTube) or via, if you own one, an iPod touch or iPhone.
     
  16. KettyKrueger macrumors 6502

    KettyKrueger

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    #16
    All I ever wanted for the ATV was a speedy UI and album wall view. I hate scrolling through a long list of Artists.

    It's true though, the ATV could be so much more with a little R&D. That said, it could be so much without any R&D, just add basic functions (internet, more codec support, customisable UI).

    A little advertising wouldn't hurt either! In the UK I've never seen an ATV advert (not on TV, paper, magazine, radio, etc). Are we supposed to all flock to Apple stores to see them in action?

    I think their 'hobby' approach is apt. They can't be bothered (or don't see any value) in really pushing the product, like the iPhone or iTouch which has adverts on TV all the time.
     
  17. Rich1963 macrumors 6502

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    #17
    I find it humorous that every time the DVD importation into itunes is brought up, someone immediately says it won't happen due to copy protection. All Apple has to do is get the studios to agree to allow it to happen and it won't be a problem. And what iTunes could easily do is wrap the movie as an .m4v and place the same copy protection onto the resulting file that is currently applied to itunes purchased content. It would really become a selling point when Apple could advertise that all of your DVDs and Bluray DVDs can be improted into itunes and then played onto any of your existing media devices.
     
  18. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

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    #18
    On some DVD's, you can already: http://www.apple.com/itunes/digitalcopy/
     
  19. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

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    #19
    I would not go for on screen keys, that's how I use the internet on my Wii, pain in the as*.
    Being able to use the iPod touch or my aluminum Apple Keyboard would be awesome.
     
  20. anti-microsoft macrumors 68000

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    #20
    Yeah I also have a Wii... I think it would be worse on :apple:tv since it doesn't have a motion receiver like the Wii does, instead you have to click in the direction you want the selection to go to.

    Ams.
     
  21. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

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    #21
    Hmm... reminds me of the MacBook wheel UI.
     
  22. iSaygoodbye macrumors 6502a

    iSaygoodbye

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    #22
    the ipod touch as a remote would be sweet. but i dont think ittl happen because not ever apple tv owner has a touch or iphone. the new indian jones does suck and so does the animated star wars
     
  23. CMelton macrumors regular

    CMelton

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    #23
  24. Thanatoast macrumors 6502a

    Thanatoast

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    #24
    I fail to see the appeal of internet on the ATV. There are so many more appropriate and easy ways to surf the net...

    What I think could really push the ATV above and beyond all other options is content. There's absolutely no reason other than greed that Apple should have a copy of every movie ever produced. Imagine the back catalog you could build and have at your fingertips! Every movie, for rent or purchase (enough of this on again/off again BS) ever made. Stupid movie execs are probably holding out for ludicrous amounts of cash per title and costing themselves sales in the process.
     
  25. dernhelm macrumors 68000

    dernhelm

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    #25
    I'm with you. I'm don't have BR yet, so I am also considering a $350 player with Netflix streaming. If AppleTV came out, and just did it, I would give my $350 to Apple. But if by the end of March, they still haven't figured out what to do with their cute little hobby, then I'll spring for the BR player, and give my money to Samsung.

    My ultimate fantasy would be an Apple TV with Netflix streaming and a BluRay player. I'll throw in HDMI-CEC while I'm at it (hah!). But I certainly won't hold my breath for that.

    I'm very interested in whatever Apple does to Apple-TV in it's next iteration, but March is as long as I'll wait.
     

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