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The Future of Apple TV (HW)


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The Future of Apple TV (HW)
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Brave Ulysses
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
 
2020-10-28, 13:35

Apple's Apple TV hardware hasn't seen an update since September 2017.

The lack of updates seems especially glaring this year with everyone spending more time at home. Lots of missed opportunities.

The biggest glaring omission during the past 8 months to me has been zero support for video conferencing with the Apple TV. Not only would this be significant for work, but the lack of FaceTime support is also strange. I'm sure apple is debating how to properly support a third party camera for a significant feature, but they need to figure something out.

In general, the Apple TV seems to kind of be lost right now, especially since new TVs are coming with the Apple TV app and AirPlay 2 support.
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chucker
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: near Bremen, Germany
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2020-10-28, 15:01

On the one hand, the Apple TV is frankly overpowered already for what it does, and doesn't really need an update for that.

On the other hand, for what it does, it's too pricey, too overengineered, too big. Kind of like a HomePod but not even with sound quality that beats the competition. A $69 HDMI stick from Apple would do, but that's probably not even a market they care about. (If they do that, why don't I just get a Fire stick if it runs Apple TV-the-app anyway? Or a TV that has all that and AirPlay built right in?) The moment they decided to offer that to third parties, they made the inevitable official: Apple will never compete in low-cost (stick) or zero-cost (comes with the smart TV).

So, failing that, the question becomes, can they make it a proper premium product?

(In part: Apple Arcade. Hasn't really caught the world by storm, though.)

Video conferencing, with the iSight making a comeback, does sound like such a use case, and I do agree they missed an opportunity on that this year. (Their long pipeline is really biting them in the butt in these pandemic times.) But, again, even on the software side, their hearts don't seem entirely in the idea of "can we do Zoom, but better, and home-focused".
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2020-10-28, 15:11

Apple seems more concerned with delivering their streaming services across a variety of platforms than updating the Apple TV beyond where it is. I would like to believe there is a plan, but I don't have faith in that considering Apple dumped Airport—which was (and still is) a very good and highly sought-after product. Sometimes, Apple makes some very weird decisions.

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Frank777
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2020-10-28, 16:58

I'd prefer an Apple Console with mid-level gaming being a real focus. But I doubt Apple has the tenacity to start a street fight with Nintendo. And win.
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2020-10-28, 17:01

There's already a zillion games. They just need a solid chunk of hardware and some actual, you know, controllers!
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Frank777
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2020-10-28, 17:07

Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherer View Post
There's already a zillion games. They just need a solid chunk of hardware and some actual, you know, controllers!
Yeah, but that's like saying there's a lot of solitaire games for Windows. I haven't seen anything on Apple Arcade that screams "gotta have that" to me as yet.
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2020-10-28, 17:23

Gotta start somewhere. But they need a good controller system before anyone is going to take it seriously.
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2020-10-28, 20:44

The next upgrade will be when they push 8K. Given 4K TVs can be had for so little no the next market is 8K. That might get us a new box.

I'm actually holding out for a new one. I still need one but holding out with a really old gen 3 model. It can't even play Plex anymore because it crashes once a show/movie gets going. I'm sure it jut can't handle it anymore. But my other TVs have the 4K version and do just fine.

As it is, I think the really need the catalog more than anything else for gaming. You can pair your choice (just about) of controller to the Apple TV and game away like it is a console. My kids love using OneCast and playing the Xbox games via the Apple TV.

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Frank777
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2020-10-28, 22:15

Quote:
Originally Posted by kscherer View Post
Gotta start somewhere. But they need a good controller system before anyone is going to take it seriously.
That's a real problem though.

Apple's track record in dedicated hardware controllers includes the 'hockey puck' mouse, the current AppleTV remote, and a decade of forgetting how to build a keyboard.
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2020-10-29, 10:46

Yep. Sometimes simplicity is not the answer.

As far as Apple TV remotes go, the old aluminum thing was perfect. The new Siri remote with it's stupid touch pad is just a joke, and as a controller, well …

And it doesn't matter whether or not you can use 3rd-party controllers. No one will ever see it as a gaming console unless it comes with its own. Period.

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Frank777
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2020-10-29, 10:54

Apple's got so much know-how in adding gyro sensors to the iPhone, that besting the Wii Remote should be child's play for them.

I haven't seen xBox or PS5 say anything about using motion controls this generation.

So if Apple's looking for a way in to the casual gamer market, that could be it.
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kscherer
The Ban Hammer
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boyzeee
 
2020-10-29, 11:18

There is plenty of potential, but Apple is trying to be too gimmicky with it. The current remote is a Jony Ive design, so hopefully that reckless simplicity will go away with the next iteration.

$180 is a small price to pay for a gaming console. With two decent remotes in there, $250 would be a sellable product. Those remotes could easily have 3-axis gyro as long as they also have the normal suite of buttons, and no funky touch pad. Hell, Siri could still be in there, too. With an A14, two controllers with 3-axis gyro, Siri remote, and a host of decent games, Apple TV could become the must-have gift this Spend-All-My-Hard-Earned-Cash-On-Useless-Junk-For-Someone-Else™ holiday shop-till-you-drop season.

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