From Mac360’s News of the Future™ Department: How soon is too soon for a new product to be upgraded?
Introducing AppleTV Extreme. It’s everything you always wanted in AppleTV. It plays DVDs, it rips DVDs, it streams internet video, and it’s a DVR that’s cable ready.
If I could write the news before it happened and could determine the feature set of new products, here’s how it would work. Apple would introduce their latest version of AppleTV, available immediately. It will be called AppleTV Extreme.
How does AppleTV Extreme differ from Apple’s original media center device? Plenty. Customers who purchased AppleTV love it. They love it so much they created a quick list of features they wanted Apple to add.
Apple added nearly everything that was on customer wish lists and packaged them into a $399 box, exactly the same size and dimensions of the original, but with much more capability, including a 160 gigabyte hard drive.
For example, AppleTV Extreme comes with Internet Streaming Support so you can browse the menu using your remote and pick up streaming video from BBC news, or Major League Baseball, or the Playboy Channel.
Apple’s board is populated by Google’s CEO so the Google connection is built in to AppleTV Extreme. YouTube videos are just a couple of clicks away and enhanced for playback on your television.
Many AppleTV users petitioned the company to provide iTunes Store-like purchasing capability right into the menu and Apple didn’t disappoint. Now you can browse the iTunes Store live from your sofa with the Apple Remote.
Not only can you buy movies and TV shows to play whenever you wish, you may also rent media for playback within 24 hours for a lower fee. You’re buying right from AppleTV Extreme using your iTunes Store account and your remote.
The original AppleTV didn’t receive much criticism, only feature requests. One such request was the ability to stream photos and slide shows from other computers. You get in AppleTV Extreme.
So you bought a High Definition TV and there’s nothing to watch? Not with AppleTV Extreme. The iTunes Store is now loaded with thousands of movie titles, many of them available in HD video, playable in 1080p as pure HiDef.
The new AppleTV Extreme has a built in SuperDrive capable of playing DVDs—HD, Blu-Ray, double-layer, whatever. Pop in a DVD and it shows up on the AppleTV Extreme menu. Click and it plays on your TV.
Even better, if you have a DVD player on your Mac or Windows PC, and an 802.11n wireless connection, or standard ethernet connection. AppleTV Extreme can play whatever DVD is on your computer.
AppleTV Extreme costs $100 more than the original but also delivers one feature demanded by Mac and PC users—a digital video recorder is built in. Select TV shows from the menu using Apple Remote, record one TV show while viewing another using the built in cable connector.
TV shows are recorded and synchronized with your master Mac or PC’s iTunes. You may elect to save the recording permanently, or delete as needed.
Also upgraded is AppleTV Extreme’s support for audio enhancements, specifically surround sound 5.1.
There’s something for everyone’s tastes and wishes in AppleTV Extreme. Now all we need is for Apple to listen and produce the bugger.
What’s interesting about this whole News of the Future™ scenario, is the utter lack of criticism of Apple’s original AppleTV, which is barely weeks old. The focus of attention, from customers and media techno pundits, is the list of features they want to see in AppleTV (Extreme).
Thanks to Jason Snell for categorizing everyone’s AppleTV Extreme wish list. What’s on your list of wishes for the next version of AppleTV?