Major Apple TV Update (2.2)

An Apple TV software update hit the wire tonight and it is a doozy!

Full release notes are here, including how to use some of the new features.

Some highlights:

– HD TV Shows

Standby mode (so the Apple TV doesn’t eat about 16 watts of power all the time) Standby menu item. Works the same as it always has; turns off video out, shuts down the hard drive, but the unit is still consuming power at “on” levels.

– Genius and on-the-go playlists (Genius also works from the Remote app on the iPhone/iPod Touch)

– Movie descriptions, alternate audio, subtitle display selectable during playback.

– Browse movies by actor or directory

The real news, though, is that the UI has grown a major new feature. The interaction during playback features are accessible by holding down the play/pause button for a few seconds, at which point a little menu pops up on screen that contains pertinent options.

This particular interaction model opens the door for all kinds of additional UI while maintaining the simplicity of the 5 button remote. Just add a menu item…

Update: Speaking of TV Shows, my favorite show — the IT Crowd — appears to now be available in the iTunes Store. At least, the first episode of Season 1 is available, along with a season pass! Totally brilliant show.

4 Responses to “Major Apple TV Update (2.2)”

  1. Alderete says:

    AppleTV keeps getting better and better, and I confess to being tempted. But it’s still not there for me, because even though the selection of movies and TV shows is improving, it’s nowhere near what Netflix offers. That’ll change eventually (extrapolating from the growth in music selection from iTMS introduction to today), but for now, my primary movie device needs to have an optical disc reader.

    If a new AppleTV was released that came with a Blu-ray player in it, I would buy it instantly. I don’t think I’d even care what the price was, I’d just throw my credit card at the first person who would sell one to me. Now it seems like that won’t happen before Xmas. Maybe in January…

  2. Just Someone says:

    “Standby mode (so the Apple TV doesn’t eat about 16 watts of power all the time)”

    You can’t use it as heater anymore? That’s a regression! Why does Apple keep removing features in new version of its products?

  3. bbum says:

    Actually … I was mistaken. Standby mode does turn off the video out and hard drive, but doesn’t actually sleep the device.

    So, yes, it’ll still keep your cookies warm, if you want.

  4. Mel says:

    Doesn’t the AppleTV go to sleep or something, when not being used? That seems like a major problem, “green”-wise.

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