Monday, September 6, 2010

Apple TV iOS portable remote

The rumors and speculations regarding the Apple TV before it was announced on Wednesday, these I found to be wild guesses. People were talking about it being renamed the iTV as if this were "exciting". It was pretty certain, and confirmed, that the Apple TV runs iOS. I expected this to just be handy on the back-end, so Apple programmers could use one programming architecture for all of their non-computer devices. Others guessed, hoped, dreamed, that apps would be available for Apple TV, which I found bizarre. I can't think of many apps that I would want to use with a five button remote, looking at a screen across the room. One suggestion was that portable iOS devices could work as screens for individual users for games, like tile racks for Scrabble; the iPad Scrabble app supports using an iPhone/iPod touch as a tile rack. I think this is possible, but only really useful for board games. Some people imagined that the Apple TV could act as a game console rivaling the Wii; I don't expect the latency between an iOS controller and Apple TV to be fast enough to use as a game controller, nor do I think that a $99 set-top box could be powerful enough to play modern games.

I also noticed that Apple is offering an app to use iOS portables as a remote for the Apple TV, and this is probably the best use for Apple TV/iOS portable integration. I'm surprised that this has earned minimal press coverage, except for at iThinkDiff and Wireless and Mobile News, and their treatment of this feature is about one or two sentences long. There was wild speculation about iOS portable integration with Apple TV before the Apple TV was announced, but little coverage, now, of what this integration can actually do. The remote app hasn't been released yet, so reviews of it can't be written; even so, the noise leading up to the Apple TV has dwarfed the actual coverage of facts regarding what the Apple TV can do with iOS portables. I have a pet peeve about Apple tech news coverage mostly being wild guessing and punditry, with much heat and little light; Daring Fireball is the main exception.

1 comment:

  1. Alex - Apple is using their iTunes remote app for both iTunes and Apple TV (and airtunes). []. Speaking of Apple TV, do you have any of the 'working' flash drives on this list ( I could borrow?