Apple TV update adds streaming iTunes TV show support

Apple has always considered its Apple TV device to be a "hobby" rather than a product that was heavily marketed. However, according to a new report on Apple Insider, a new software update to the AppleTV device will not only allow its users to purchase TV shows from the device via iTunes but it also lets users stream those TV episode purchases to the Apple TV box.

Previously, Apple TV only let its users purchase TV episodes via rentals at 99 cents a piece, so this software update is a huge change for the product. In addition to the Apple TV update, iTunes itself has gotten its own update that allows users to stream previously purchased TV shows to the PC, Mac or iOS devices. However, Apple Insider notes that not all TV networks are making their shows available with this new feature; CBS and NBC are apparently not involved.

In addition to the new streaming TV shows update, Apple TV now supports watching Internet videos from the Vimeo service. The update also allows users to access their own Vimeo inbox. Apple TV previously had support for Netflix's streaming video service along with YouTube, Flick, and more Internet videos.

The current hardware version of Apple TV first launched in 2010 for $99. The device has reportedly only sold 500,000 units since it launched, which is tiny compared to the millions of units for Apple's iPhone and iPad devices. There have been rumors in the recent past that Apple is planning to launch a television line with integrated iOS software.

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Apple TV is fairly neat once Jailbroken especially when you use other Apple devices over it's airplay function. You have a fairly competent Media streamer (with XBMC) and the ability to view pictures, videos and song off your iDevice

Shadrack said,
This should have been supported from day 1.
Streaming TV shows from your computer has always been supported. This is iCloud for TV (streaming of any TV show you've purchased, even if it's not on a shared iTunes Library in your network).

I wonder what TV networks are participating in this? I have a few different TV show seasons from iTunes and none of them are working. Hopefully all the movie studios and TV networks will get on board with this and allow re-downloading and streaming to any device / iDevice.

Finally, this is good for AppleTV users...

This is also sad that something a gaming console like the XBox has had for over 5 years is just now making it into a 'TV' only device.

PS The article probably should note that these features are part of the iCloud rollout, and are running/stored on Microsoft Windows Azure (Cloud) servers. I'm sure Microsoft makes a bit of money off of Apple; but it might make the Apple fanbois a bit less likely to complain about Microsoft if they realize how much Microsoft technology they use everyday.

(Even the GPUs in all your Apple products are based on Microsoft hardware engineering, and would not exist if it hadn't been for the XBox and XBox 360.)

Anyone that thinks Microsoft and Apple have the same 'fight' that their fans do, don't have a clue how co-dependent they both are.

thenetavenger said,

PS The article probably should note that these features are part of the iCloud rollout, and are running/stored on Microsoft Windows Azure (Cloud) servers. I'm sure Microsoft makes a bit of money off of Apple; but it might make the Apple fanbois a bit less likely to complain about Microsoft if they realize how much Microsoft technology they use everyday.

.

iCloud makes use of both amazon and azure services at the moment (so not just microsoft products), it's not known whether it will remain this way however, as theres always the possibility that MobileMe data centers can be converted to iCloud data centers and move away from the amazon/azure dependency....

thenetavenger said,
Finally, this is good for AppleTV users...

(Even the GPUs in all your Apple products are based on Microsoft hardware engineering, and would not exist if it hadn't been for the XBox and XBox 360.)
.

What are you onabout??

Microsoft don't make the GPU and I see you seem to forget that the xbox used the chips pioneered in the Mac. But carry on rewrite some more history

I do not have an ATV, but this update allows DRM'd video content purchased on iTunes to be streamed to ATV. Pretty sure that, just like the XBox 360, DRM-free video files could always be streamed from your computer to the ATV.

Edited by Shadrack, Aug 1 2011, 10:56pm :

evo_spook said,

What are you onabout??

Microsoft don't make the GPU and I see you seem to forget that the xbox used the chips pioneered in the Mac. But carry on rewrite some more history

Seriously, you do not have any understanding of GPU architecture history, and that it is not a CPU?

The PS/VS design of the original XBox was created by Microsoft Engineers and implemented by NVidia. It expanded the PS functionality for DirectX8, and specifically 8.1.

This is where user created shader technology came from, and it was designed by Microsoft. Microsoft HLSL created alongside Cg, as NVidia Cg was a direct port/copy of HLSL for non-DirectX use. HLSL/Cg was also modified to create GLSL for OpenGL, specifically OpenGL 2.0.

The first computer video cards to use this technology were the Geforce4TI. It was also the basis of the DX9 GPU technologies, and NVidia's FX, 6x, and 7x GPUs were based on.

As most mobile GPUs today have at least DX9 or OpenGL 2.0 capabilities, like the iPhone, they are based on the Microsoft GPU architecture and the Microsoft programable shader technology. Even the OpenGL ES they run is using the higher level shader language created by Microsoft.


The XBox 360 DOES use the PPC CPU, which was used in Macs. However this is not a GPU. (GPU = Graphics Processing Unit)

The XBox 360 GPU (Xenos) was designed by Microsoft and implemented by ATI. Microsoft created the Unified Shader model with new agnostic stream processors and core independence, along with a DMA processor on the GPU to use the newer BUS(AGP&PCI/e) technologies to shift RAM between System and VRAM transparently.

The Xenos is the first GPU to implement this architecture, and PC Video Card GPUs started using this architecture as well.

So all DX10/DX11/OpenGL 3.0 level Video Cards are using the Xenos GPU architecture model. Since all modern Macs are using either the previous generation GPU design 'from Microsoft' or the GPUs based on Xenos, every Mac depends on Microsoft technology.

(See Apple hasn't designed hardware at this level for a long time, which is a bit ironic, as Microsoft is seen as a 'software company' yet they are behind a lot of hardware technologies, not just my simple GPU example.)

So, why is the Xenos GPU so important? Well CUDA 2.x, DirectCompute (debuted on XBox 360), and Apple's OpenCL's GP-GPU functionality DEPEND on the Xenos GPU architecture, and come from the Microsoft DirectCompute technologies that CUDA is designed to interface with, and OpenCL also interfaces with.

OpenGL 3.0 is 'close' to DirectX10 in features, and they BOTH require the unified shaders and other features of the Xenos GPU design.

OpenGL 4.0 is 'close' to DirectX11 in features, and they BOTH require features of the Xenos GPU design, in fact DirectX11 is the first PC version of DirectX that implements all the features of the XBox 360 DirectX with tensellation, and again this goes back to the Xenos GPU design 'from Microsoft'.

ATI freely admits they were the puppets for Microsoft Hardware Engineers, and NVidia is a bit less frank about the GPU design they created with Microsoft, but they have to admit that Cg and GLSL come from Microsoft's HLSL and user-programable shader technologies. Which is what defines the architecture for DirectX9 and OpenGL 2.0.


(This information is out there, is easy to reference and yet people overlook it, as it doesn't fit their reality model.)

So ya, if use any Apple Products, you should be a fan of Microsoft. PERIOD.


Is this complete enough, or you want me to grab references for you?
Start here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Level_Shader_Language


So what are you onabout?
Plato called, he said you 'really' could come out of the cave this time...


bugsbungee said,

iCloud makes use of both amazon and azure services at the moment (so not just microsoft products), it's not known whether it will remain this way however, as theres always the possibility that MobileMe data centers can be converted to iCloud data centers and move away from the amazon/azure dependency....

Blog storage, and other video translation 'happen' on Microsoft Azure.

Amazon's services are used for authenication, as they may be content sharing the video media.

Amazon's platform is a collection of services. Microsoft Azure is full OS technology based on Windows that runs services and custom applications in a Cloud model.

I don't know if Apple will move it in house, but even if they do, it may still be running Microsoft Windows Azure.

Right now Microsoft is providing several video content services for the iPhone and iPad using Azure to do realtime translation of content, and it is very possible Apple is wanting to take advantage of these technologies to be able to offer things like smooth-streaming, and other features that Apple/iTunes does not offer.

You are righ it could change, but just like getting Flash Video and Netflix on the iPad, it is running on Microsoft Windows Azure, so if Apple is looking for something that works that they can't provide, Microsoft is the only solution.

The DRM side of providing 'reloadable' content is possibly Microsoft based technology, as Apple's DRM for Video doesn't fit this model.

But you are right in that it all could change, but as it exists now, Apple and the iPhone/iPad are very dependant on Microsoft and Microsoft technology.