Apple TV 2012
When Apple announced the launch of the new iPad 3, it overshadowed the launch of an upgrade to another product by Apple – Apple TV. Even though Apple TV has lesser native channels than its competitors, it is still an important companion in the living room for any one who has an investment in Apple’s hardware ecosystems and iTunes.
The new Apple TV does not bring with it a lot of changes. The biggest difference from the older model is the support of 1080p content. A single core A5 processor has also been added and the user interface has been given an overhaul along with better support for iCloud video.
What is new?
The Apple TV has always been a high quality media streaming box and offers a great experience to those who use multiple iOS devices. AirPlay still remains of the best features and there is a very seamless integration with other services from Apple like iCloud back-up of movie and TV purchases, Photo Stream, and iTunes Match.
With the new UI changes, a lot of people might think that their TV has transformed into a huge iPad. The icons for each service are quite large, and it also hints at the possibility of the AppStore coming to the TV. Many people are not giving much importance to the 1080p support, but it may make its presence felt when the full-screen mirroring feature is incorporated into the soon to be released Mountain Lion OS.
The design has not changed much as the front part still has a single white light telling you if the device is active or not. When you look at the back, you will find a few connectivity options like Ethernet, Micro-USB, HDMI, and optical audio output. The device also comes with an 802.11 Wi-Fi capability if you want to connect it to your wireless network. It should be noted that the only video connection provided by the device is HDMI. So, those having an older TV will not be able to use the device.
One of the greatest advantages of Apple TV is that the power supply is built-in. You do not have to bother with heavy adapters and it makes the device sturdy. This is not the case with some of Apple’s competitors, whose products are so light that they are pulled by the weight of an attached cable.
Remote and streaming content
The remote that comes with the device is simple in its design, just like any other Apple product. There is a navigation circle, a menu button (which can also be used as BACK button), and a Play button. Navigation circle will also help you in going forward or backward.
The content is not downloaded, instead it is streamed. You have the liberty to access almost all your movies and TV shows for watching as many times as you like. You can also stream these shows and movies to other Apple devices like iPad, iPod touch, and software that run on PCs and Macs. Apart from iTunes, other streaming sources include Netflix, NBA, MLB.TV, YouTube, NHL, and Vimeo.