Apple recently unveiled the new version of Apple iTV, the next generation iteration of its highly successful digital media receiver. A quarter of the size of the original and a price that is simple too tempting i.e. Rs. 24,000/-, the media server is definitely the next must have gadget for all the Apple gadget lovers. The only feature which is supposed to be lacking is Apple’s Inexorable attitude towards executing contending formats.
At its heart, Apple TV is a cloud based media server that syncs (transfers) songs and videos from iTunes based computers via a blisteringly fast draft-N Wi-Fi link or high speed Ethernet connection. The device available in Pakistan also features a 160GB hard disk, so one has the luxury of streaming all contents either directly from the internet or from the built-in hard disk drive.
Streaming the content from internet is possible, courtesy the iTunes Pakistan Store, which can now provide you with movies, TV shows, podcasts, photos, YouTube videos, and other such contents on your own TV. Connectivity on the iTV is provided via HDMI cables, optical digital output, USB and Ethernet. Minimalistic Apple menus which are intuitive are straight-forward operations ensure that everything goes smooth.
Apple iTV Flaws :
On the downside, Apple doesn’t play well with others. The TV can’t show DivX, XviD or WMV files natively. Apple’s definition of HD also leaves something to be desired, although honestly the 720p resolution is enough ripped DVDs and also for the type of content available locally. However if one were to spend a couple of thousands rupees extra, the price point is close enough to PS3 which can do all this and even can playback Blu-Ray media formats easily.
All in all, if aren’t Apple fan with simple tastes, you’re going to love it. If you’re and audiophile/videophile and want a more versatile device, then its better you stay away from iTV.
Apple iTV Video Formats :
H.264 video upto 720p, 30 frames per-second, Main Profile level 3.1 with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps per channel, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, and .mov file format. MPEG-4 video, up to 2.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second. Simple Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4 and .mov file formats. Motion JPEG (M-JPEG) up to 35 Mbps, 1280 by 720 pixels, 30 frames per second, PCM stereo audio in .avi file format (source Apple)
Apple iTV Audio Formats :
HE-AAC (VI), AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, audible (formats 2, 3 and 4), Apple lossless, AIFF, and Wav; Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound passes-through (source Apple)