Engadget’s AppleTV Review says “don’t buy for HD”

Key line in the lengthy AppleTV Review over on Engadget: “Simply put, if anyone is thinking about buying this to watch HD movies and videos: don’t.”

I already have a Media Center (running Vista) and an Xbox 360, so I wasn’t going to rely on it for HD stuff, but I have found the Apple TV to be pretty unsatisfying if you are trying to watch any of the shows off of ABC TV’s hot new video player (which, by the way, works just as well on MacOSX as it does on XP — a Vista version is coming soon).

Also, the hot new video thing is Joost. That can’t play on Apple TV either. Neither can my old show over on Microsoft’s Channel 9 (Apple TV can’t play WMV).

That said, for what the Apple TV does do it does pretty well. Works great with most of the stuff over on Blip.TV and my current show works pretty well on it (although it’s definitely not HD and on my big screen is about as blurry as standard TV albeit my stuff is in widescreen so is better than most of the standard TV stuff, which I find mostly unwatchable on my big screen).

The Apple TV is definitely putting pressure on videobloggers to deliver a higher resolution version of our shows, which will prove troubling to deliver for a variety of reasons (I record my shows on tape in HD, which looks glorious, but don’t currently capture those tapes into the Mac in a high res format cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times). Thanks to my Seagate partnership I’m working on some HD tests, though, just to see if we can make the workflow work for, maybe, a show a week (most of my stuff really doesn’t need HD, but there definitely is some that would be fun to do).

Anyway, is the Apple TV a good purchase? Yeah, I’m happy with it. But that just might be the Steve Jobs’ distortion field! :-)

The Engadget review is a must read for anyone who still hasn’t bought one and there’s definitely more media tests ahead in my house!

Comments

  1. Key word being “hack.” How many normal people are going to know that it’s available for one, how to find it, for two, and how to load it, for three? Me and you will, but not everyday normal people.

  2. Key word being “hack.” How many normal people are going to know that it’s available for one, how to find it, for two, and how to load it, for three? Me and you will, but not everyday normal people.

  3. I wonder how many ‘normal’ people are buying Apple TVs right now though…

    Like the first iPods. The demographics of those purchases were nothing like those today..

  4. I wonder how many ‘normal’ people are buying Apple TVs right now though…

    Like the first iPods. The demographics of those purchases were nothing like those today..

  5. Andrew: the numbers of normal people buying Apple TVs are a lot higher than early iPods. Why? Cause of the coolness of the Apple brand and because of the Apple stores, where salespeople show these things off to normal people. Those both are huge changes in the past four years.

  6. Andrew: the numbers of normal people buying Apple TVs are a lot higher than early iPods. Why? Cause of the coolness of the Apple brand and because of the Apple stores, where salespeople show these things off to normal people. Those both are huge changes in the past four years.

  7. “Me and you will, but not everyday normal people.”

    And everyday normal people aren’t beta-testing a niche product and expecting it to be supported or ported to their TV.

  8. “Me and you will, but not everyday normal people.”

    And everyday normal people aren’t beta-testing a niche product and expecting it to be supported or ported to their TV.

  9. AP slammed Apple TV today as well in a review by Peter Svensson. Most papers went with the punning headline “Apple appalls where Xbox excels,” although the Portsmith Herald News said “Apple TV an iSore.” I love my Apple TV, but I’m not even thinking about it as an HD platform. (not only is the picture quality weak, but there’s no discrete surround sound (5.1 or 7.1) and no closed captions. But it is the “channel” that I use to watch ScobleShow and CalacanisCast.
    @2. You not only have to ask how many “normal people” will find the Apple TV hack for Joost, but also how many people have found Joost–and having found it are in on the beta. (BTW… rather than “normal people,” I prefer the term that Variety uses for folks who aren’t in the show business: “civilians.”

  10. AP slammed Apple TV today as well in a review by Peter Svensson. Most papers went with the punning headline “Apple appalls where Xbox excels,” although the Portsmith Herald News said “Apple TV an iSore.” I love my Apple TV, but I’m not even thinking about it as an HD platform. (not only is the picture quality weak, but there’s no discrete surround sound (5.1 or 7.1) and no closed captions. But it is the “channel” that I use to watch ScobleShow and CalacanisCast.
    @2. You not only have to ask how many “normal people” will find the Apple TV hack for Joost, but also how many people have found Joost–and having found it are in on the beta. (BTW… rather than “normal people,” I prefer the term that Variety uses for folks who aren’t in the show business: “civilians.”

  11. “The Apple TV is definitely putting pressure on videobloggers to deliver a higher resolution version of our shows, which will prove troubling to deliver for a variety of reasons (I record my shows on tape in HD, which looks glorious, but don’t currently capture those tapes into the Mac in a high res format cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times).”

    This whole premise seems absurd. Yeah, video bloggers want promotion and penetration. They wish we wacthed them on TV. Some of these people are likewise HD nerds who want HD promoted.

    How does that mean the AppleTV drives them to support HD?

    HD support is still constrained by the usage of HD TVs, their own usage of HD cameras, and their usage of higher end software for editing and formatting, and their usage of higher end computers and storage to handle this content. Moreover, if they are already producing in SD, anyone with HDTV and an AppleTV still view tons and tons of content broadcast in SD… so there is no push to up resolutions.

    This is just your lame ass attempt to push for HD and video blogs.

  12. “The Apple TV is definitely putting pressure on videobloggers to deliver a higher resolution version of our shows, which will prove troubling to deliver for a variety of reasons (I record my shows on tape in HD, which looks glorious, but don’t currently capture those tapes into the Mac in a high res format cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times).”

    This whole premise seems absurd. Yeah, video bloggers want promotion and penetration. They wish we wacthed them on TV. Some of these people are likewise HD nerds who want HD promoted.

    How does that mean the AppleTV drives them to support HD?

    HD support is still constrained by the usage of HD TVs, their own usage of HD cameras, and their usage of higher end software for editing and formatting, and their usage of higher end computers and storage to handle this content. Moreover, if they are already producing in SD, anyone with HDTV and an AppleTV still view tons and tons of content broadcast in SD… so there is no push to up resolutions.

    This is just your lame ass attempt to push for HD and video blogs.

  13. @7. The move to HDTV started in broadcast way, way back in the 1980′s. Long time for producers and broadcasters to justify the added costs of production and transmission. WRT bloggers, I’m surprised you didn’t mention the constraint of bandwidth. (Of course, if my favorite video blogger did shorter shows… maybe the costs would solve for HD.)

  14. @7. The move to HDTV started in broadcast way, way back in the 1980′s. Long time for producers and broadcasters to justify the added costs of production and transmission. WRT bloggers, I’m surprised you didn’t mention the constraint of bandwidth. (Of course, if my favorite video blogger did shorter shows… maybe the costs would solve for HD.)

  15. Goebbels: sigh. Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.

    My viewers are heavy Apple freaks. Lots of them have Apple TVs and are watching my show on their home screens. Yeah, I’d love to give them a better experience (it already is pretty good cause I went wide screen when other video bloggers like, say, Ze Frank, went 4:3).

    I’m not saying we need to go HD. But, look at ABC’s new viewer. It rocks on my new Apple 17-inch (which is as high a resolution as my 60-inch TV).

    And I don’t really care about people who aren’t early adopter types. Late adopters who are still using Windows 2000 probably aren’t going to think about watching a show about new technology done by a geeky guy they never heard of before. They are probably still watching Anna Nicole Smith stuff on CNN.

  16. Goebbels: sigh. Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.

    My viewers are heavy Apple freaks. Lots of them have Apple TVs and are watching my show on their home screens. Yeah, I’d love to give them a better experience (it already is pretty good cause I went wide screen when other video bloggers like, say, Ze Frank, went 4:3).

    I’m not saying we need to go HD. But, look at ABC’s new viewer. It rocks on my new Apple 17-inch (which is as high a resolution as my 60-inch TV).

    And I don’t really care about people who aren’t early adopter types. Late adopters who are still using Windows 2000 probably aren’t going to think about watching a show about new technology done by a geeky guy they never heard of before. They are probably still watching Anna Nicole Smith stuff on CNN.

  17. “the numbers of normal people buying Apple TVs are a lot higher than early iPods.”

    What numbers are you referring to? The ones you pulled out your @ss?

  18. “the numbers of normal people buying Apple TVs are a lot higher than early iPods.”

    What numbers are you referring to? The ones you pulled out your @ss?

  19. Rals: yeah, I pulled out numbers from my ass. But, why did they sell out at the local Apple store? I don’t remember iPods doing that on the first week they were announced. It took a long time for the numbers to grow.

  20. Rals: yeah, I pulled out numbers from my ass. But, why did they sell out at the local Apple store? I don’t remember iPods doing that on the first week they were announced. It took a long time for the numbers to grow.

  21. “The move to HDTV started in broadcast way, way back in the 1980’s. Long time for producers and broadcasters to justify the added costs of production and transmission. ”

    No kidding, so what? That doesn’t change the fact that only a handful of channels broadcast a subset of their programs in HD, that only some events are filmed in HD, etc… I’m fully aware of the history of HDTV… pointing it does nothing to change that it’s not where some want to beleive it is. Or that AppleTV drives it in video podcasts.

    “WRT bloggers, I’m surprised you didn’t mention the constraint of bandwidth. (Of course, if my favorite video blogger did shorter shows… maybe the costs would solve for HD.)”

    You’re right. Yet another reason why 5-6 different technologies constrain video podcasts more than AppleTV can promote their increased resolution.

    “Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.”

    Umm, no. I presented rational, real reasons. You are largely trying to just dismiss me. Boo hoo.

    “My viewers are heavy Apple freaks. Lots of them have Apple TVs and are watching my show on their home screens.”

    How many? What percent? Why do I care about you and you alone who would predictably say this: where is this “driving” force? How can I observe it in other podcasts?

    “And I don’t really care about people who aren’t early adopter types.”

    I know that. So what? Where is the proof that there is a driving force for HD in podcasts caused by AppleTV?

    Allegedly, I’m just ranting. You can’t provide any facts… jsut wishful thinking.

  22. “The move to HDTV started in broadcast way, way back in the 1980’s. Long time for producers and broadcasters to justify the added costs of production and transmission. ”

    No kidding, so what? That doesn’t change the fact that only a handful of channels broadcast a subset of their programs in HD, that only some events are filmed in HD, etc… I’m fully aware of the history of HDTV… pointing it does nothing to change that it’s not where some want to beleive it is. Or that AppleTV drives it in video podcasts.

    “WRT bloggers, I’m surprised you didn’t mention the constraint of bandwidth. (Of course, if my favorite video blogger did shorter shows… maybe the costs would solve for HD.)”

    You’re right. Yet another reason why 5-6 different technologies constrain video podcasts more than AppleTV can promote their increased resolution.

    “Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.”

    Umm, no. I presented rational, real reasons. You are largely trying to just dismiss me. Boo hoo.

    “My viewers are heavy Apple freaks. Lots of them have Apple TVs and are watching my show on their home screens.”

    How many? What percent? Why do I care about you and you alone who would predictably say this: where is this “driving” force? How can I observe it in other podcasts?

    “And I don’t really care about people who aren’t early adopter types.”

    I know that. So what? Where is the proof that there is a driving force for HD in podcasts caused by AppleTV?

    Allegedly, I’m just ranting. You can’t provide any facts… jsut wishful thinking.

  23. Rocketboom already provides an HD version. Others are coming, according to Videoblogging mailing list on Yahoo.

    No, you aren’t providing anything other than “Scoble is always wrong and even if he’s right he’s wrong.”

    Well, OK.

    Translation: how many times has Goebbels ever come here for a real conversation? None. Name the last time you said anything nice to me. I can’t remember and you’ve posted hundreds, probably even thousands, of times in my comment area.

    Who cares about the percent? I want EVERY viewer to have a good experience when watching my show. If there’s even ONE person with an Apple TV watching my show (hint, it’s a lot higher than that) then I think it’s worth it to look into providing a better experience. Especially since, unlike Media Center, it doesn’t require me to change my workflow all that much.

  24. Rocketboom already provides an HD version. Others are coming, according to Videoblogging mailing list on Yahoo.

    No, you aren’t providing anything other than “Scoble is always wrong and even if he’s right he’s wrong.”

    Well, OK.

    Translation: how many times has Goebbels ever come here for a real conversation? None. Name the last time you said anything nice to me. I can’t remember and you’ve posted hundreds, probably even thousands, of times in my comment area.

    Who cares about the percent? I want EVERY viewer to have a good experience when watching my show. If there’s even ONE person with an Apple TV watching my show (hint, it’s a lot higher than that) then I think it’s worth it to look into providing a better experience. Especially since, unlike Media Center, it doesn’t require me to change my workflow all that much.

  25. “Rals: yeah, I pulled out numbers from my ass. But, why did they sell out at the local Apple store?”

    Maybe they had low volume.

    “I don’t remember iPods doing that on the first week they were announced.”

    Maybe, most obviously, because they had only existed for 5 months in there were less than 5 of them rather than more than 200.

    Maybe because the iPod was a new market for Apple, but the AppleTV is spurred by a 90+ million iPod market.

  26. “Rals: yeah, I pulled out numbers from my ass. But, why did they sell out at the local Apple store?”

    Maybe they had low volume.

    “I don’t remember iPods doing that on the first week they were announced.”

    Maybe, most obviously, because they had only existed for 5 months in there were less than 5 of them rather than more than 200.

    Maybe because the iPod was a new market for Apple, but the AppleTV is spurred by a 90+ million iPod market.

  27. >Maybe because the iPod was a new market for Apple, but the AppleTV is spurred by a 90+ million iPod market.

    Exactly my point.

    Now, what were we arguing about?

  28. >Maybe because the iPod was a new market for Apple, but the AppleTV is spurred by a 90+ million iPod market.

    Exactly my point.

    Now, what were we arguing about?

  29. “Rocketboom already provides an HD version. ”

    Before AppleTV.

    ” how many times has Goebbels ever come here for a real conversation? None.”

    Bullsh!t, several of the best conversations here were in large part because of my participation.

    “Name the last time you said anything nice to me.”

    Aww, come on. I’ve offered you hugs several times when you’ve had hissy fits. Want one now, Teddy Bear?

    ANd you know I’ve always held a little grudge from when you welched on our bet.

    “Who cares about the percent?”

    Those of us who want you to actually support your argument.

    “I want EVERY viewer to have a good experience when watching my show. If there’s even ONE person with an Apple TV watching my show (hint, it’s a lot higher than that) then I think it’s worth it to look into providing a better experience.”

    We already know your view. Where is the evidence that AppleTV is driving demand for HD podcasts?

  30. “Rocketboom already provides an HD version. ”

    Before AppleTV.

    ” how many times has Goebbels ever come here for a real conversation? None.”

    Bullsh!t, several of the best conversations here were in large part because of my participation.

    “Name the last time you said anything nice to me.”

    Aww, come on. I’ve offered you hugs several times when you’ve had hissy fits. Want one now, Teddy Bear?

    ANd you know I’ve always held a little grudge from when you welched on our bet.

    “Who cares about the percent?”

    Those of us who want you to actually support your argument.

    “I want EVERY viewer to have a good experience when watching my show. If there’s even ONE person with an Apple TV watching my show (hint, it’s a lot higher than that) then I think it’s worth it to look into providing a better experience.”

    We already know your view. Where is the evidence that AppleTV is driving demand for HD podcasts?

  31. >Where is the evidence that AppleTV is driving demand for HD podcasts?

    My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.

  32. “Now, what were we arguing about?”

    That you have zero evidence that AppleTV is driving a demand for HD podcasts; that you have zero evidence of this, and are just perpetuating your usual cheerleading for HD. How many times do I have to repeat it?

  33. “Now, what were we arguing about?”

    That you have zero evidence that AppleTV is driving a demand for HD podcasts; that you have zero evidence of this, and are just perpetuating your usual cheerleading for HD. How many times do I have to repeat it?

  34. >Where is the evidence that AppleTV is driving demand for HD podcasts?

    My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.

  35. >That you have zero evidence that AppleTV is driving a demand for HD podcasts; that you have zero evidence of this.

    Sigh. Scoble hatred clouding your view again.

    I have evidence. Anecdotal it might be. Or, small it might be. People I trust have asked me for it at parties and other events. And Rocketboom has seen its HD downloads go up lately. In part because of Apple TV.

  36. The point of the review is the Apple TV does a few things really really well, but HD Video isn’t one of them. My only real complaint about Apple is the HD requirement. Why are they going to require something that makes their video look so bad? Why not release this for SDTVs and in 6 months release a Apple TV HD.

    That being said, ABC and Joost look terrible to me too. Sure they are great for Internet streaming content, but don’t even look as good as the HD content I viewed on my Apple TV.

    The ABC looks better than Joost and is still only 400 lines, not even SD never the less HD. My main complaint about the ATV was that 720p was maxed at 5Mbps, ABC’s online video isn’t even 2Mpbs!

    The Apple TV HD content can look good at ~8Mbps and for whatever reason Apple says it isn’t supported even though I have “figured” out a way to play some h.264 encoded files at that bit rate and they look very good, but still not Blu-ray, which is currently my preferred playback medium.

  37. >That you have zero evidence that AppleTV is driving a demand for HD podcasts; that you have zero evidence of this.

    Sigh. Scoble hatred clouding your view again.

    I have evidence. Anecdotal it might be. Or, small it might be. People I trust have asked me for it at parties and other events. And Rocketboom has seen its HD downloads go up lately. In part because of Apple TV.

  38. The point of the review is the Apple TV does a few things really really well, but HD Video isn’t one of them. My only real complaint about Apple is the HD requirement. Why are they going to require something that makes their video look so bad? Why not release this for SDTVs and in 6 months release a Apple TV HD.

    That being said, ABC and Joost look terrible to me too. Sure they are great for Internet streaming content, but don’t even look as good as the HD content I viewed on my Apple TV.

    The ABC looks better than Joost and is still only 400 lines, not even SD never the less HD. My main complaint about the ATV was that 720p was maxed at 5Mbps, ABC’s online video isn’t even 2Mpbs!

    The Apple TV HD content can look good at ~8Mbps and for whatever reason Apple says it isn’t supported even though I have “figured” out a way to play some h.264 encoded files at that bit rate and they look very good, but still not Blu-ray, which is currently my preferred playback medium.

  39. “My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.”

    We know its enough for you.

    But this sounds like proof of really, really bad advice to me. I got 20 emails so you should get an expensive camera, expensive software, an expensive computer, do more editting and file conversion to support 20 people despite the fact that I pimped my company for all of this stuff, have been pimping the idea for months, and I still haven’t got a handle on it yet.

  40. “My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.”

    We know its enough for you.

    But this sounds like proof of really, really bad advice to me. I got 20 emails so you should get an expensive camera, expensive software, an expensive computer, do more editting and file conversion to support 20 people despite the fact that I pimped my company for all of this stuff, have been pimping the idea for months, and I still haven’t got a handle on it yet.

  41. Ben: Apple TV works on standard TVs. I know several people who are running them on old-style TVs. Are you saying you couldn’t get yours to work on a standard old TV? I gotta go try mine on our old TV. Will do that tomorrow as part of my resolution tests.

  42. Ben: Apple TV works on standard TVs. I know several people who are running them on old-style TVs. Are you saying you couldn’t get yours to work on a standard old TV? I gotta go try mine on our old TV. Will do that tomorrow as part of my resolution tests.

  43. Goebbels: I already have the HD camcorder, the expensive computer, and might be able to handle the additional workflow.

    But, whatever. I guess you would suggest waiting for everyone else to try it out first then jump in, right?

    Yeah, that’s a really good business strategy. Let Rocketboom take all the marketshare and then try to compete later on.

    Do you do business consulting? I bet you could get $1,000 an hour for that crap. Dilbert writes about this all the time.

  44. Goebbels: I already have the HD camcorder, the expensive computer, and might be able to handle the additional workflow.

    But, whatever. I guess you would suggest waiting for everyone else to try it out first then jump in, right?

    Yeah, that’s a really good business strategy. Let Rocketboom take all the marketshare and then try to compete later on.

    Do you do business consulting? I bet you could get $1,000 an hour for that crap. Dilbert writes about this all the time.

  45. Robert: Didn’t say that.
    If you ask apple, they say it requires a HDTV, or widescreen. Either way it won’t work on all Standard TVs. Your TV has to have component inputs and if you care about the aspect ratio the TV, it has to have a widescreen mode.

    I am saying it should have included a S-Video or composite output and a 4×3 mode, considering how poorly it supports HD video, especially considering that Apple doesn’t have any HD content on the iTunes music store.

  46. Robert: Didn’t say that.
    If you ask apple, they say it requires a HDTV, or widescreen. Either way it won’t work on all Standard TVs. Your TV has to have component inputs and if you care about the aspect ratio the TV, it has to have a widescreen mode.

    I am saying it should have included a S-Video or composite output and a 4×3 mode, considering how poorly it supports HD video, especially considering that Apple doesn’t have any HD content on the iTunes music store.

  47. Ben: the marketing deal is that people who have HD TVs are far far more likely to buy an Apple TV than people like my dad who have a 20-year-old TV set and are perfectly happy with it.

    But, yeah, I think Apple’s blowing a chance to really take ownership of the HD space. They should have shipped a ton of HD content, or at minimum, wide-screen content, into ITunes the day that Apple TV shipped.

  48. Ben: the marketing deal is that people who have HD TVs are far far more likely to buy an Apple TV than people like my dad who have a 20-year-old TV set and are perfectly happy with it.

    But, yeah, I think Apple’s blowing a chance to really take ownership of the HD space. They should have shipped a ton of HD content, or at minimum, wide-screen content, into ITunes the day that Apple TV shipped.

  49. “Goebbels: I already have the HD camcorder, the expensive computer, and might be able to handle the additional workflow.”

    Which is what I said. And you still haven’t pulled it together. Someday “maybe”… Great!

    “I guess you would suggest waiting for everyone else to try it out first then jump in, right?”

    No. I simply would not claim there is a driving force for video podcasters to do so.

    “Let Rocketboom take all the marketshare and then try to compete later on.”

    And this is the absurdity: losts marketshare to one podcast with its own niche market. How does anyone with a different audience lose audience to Rocketboom?

    Video Podcasting is such a nascent, niche, and inbred market… people aren’t going to abandon a single pdocast for lack of HD.

    “Do you do business consulting?”

    Yeah, I had this great idea once about having Elton John design an iPod clone in under 3 months… and 4 years later: Zune! That one netted me more than $1,000 an hour.

  50. “Goebbels: I already have the HD camcorder, the expensive computer, and might be able to handle the additional workflow.”

    Which is what I said. And you still haven’t pulled it together. Someday “maybe”… Great!

    “I guess you would suggest waiting for everyone else to try it out first then jump in, right?”

    No. I simply would not claim there is a driving force for video podcasters to do so.

    “Let Rocketboom take all the marketshare and then try to compete later on.”

    And this is the absurdity: losts marketshare to one podcast with its own niche market. How does anyone with a different audience lose audience to Rocketboom?

    Video Podcasting is such a nascent, niche, and inbred market… people aren’t going to abandon a single pdocast for lack of HD.

    “Do you do business consulting?”

    Yeah, I had this great idea once about having Elton John design an iPod clone in under 3 months… and 4 years later: Zune! That one netted me more than $1,000 an hour.

  51. Heheh. If I were a consultant getting $1,000 an hour maybe Microsoft would have listened to me. Instead they fell back on “wait a year, copy the iPod, and add a few features to it while not quite getting the whole wheel thing.” Boring!

    Rocketboom is a metaphor. There are others in this space. Ask a Ninja, if you will.

    I never said “driving force.” I said “putting pressure on.” Hardly the same.

    Driving force is a cat 5 hurricane. Pressure is like what you feel on your feet when you stand up.

  52. Heheh. If I were a consultant getting $1,000 an hour maybe Microsoft would have listened to me. Instead they fell back on “wait a year, copy the iPod, and add a few features to it while not quite getting the whole wheel thing.” Boring!

    Rocketboom is a metaphor. There are others in this space. Ask a Ninja, if you will.

    I never said “driving force.” I said “putting pressure on.” Hardly the same.

    Driving force is a cat 5 hurricane. Pressure is like what you feel on your feet when you stand up.

  53. “Rocketboom is a metaphor. There are others in this space. Ask a Ninja, if you will.”

    Help, a metaphor is stealing my marketshare! What the hell does this mean? RocketBoom having HD support prior to AppleTV is your only anecdotal evidence that the AppleTV applies pressure to adopt HD. What does a metphor have to do with anything?

    “I never said “driving force.” I said “putting pressure on.” Hardly the same.”

    To me, they are, but fine, I’m still asking to see this pressure?

    “Pressure is like what you feel on your feet when you stand up.”

    Ha, ha, ha!! As in, nothing is new. Or was your ass glued to the couch before the AppleTV came out.

    People should invest in HD because I got some email, RocketBoom is a metphor, and I can stand on my feet!

  54. “Rocketboom is a metaphor. There are others in this space. Ask a Ninja, if you will.”

    Help, a metaphor is stealing my marketshare! What the hell does this mean? RocketBoom having HD support prior to AppleTV is your only anecdotal evidence that the AppleTV applies pressure to adopt HD. What does a metphor have to do with anything?

    “I never said “driving force.” I said “putting pressure on.” Hardly the same.”

    To me, they are, but fine, I’m still asking to see this pressure?

    “Pressure is like what you feel on your feet when you stand up.”

    Ha, ha, ha!! As in, nothing is new. Or was your ass glued to the couch before the AppleTV came out.

    People should invest in HD because I got some email, RocketBoom is a metphor, and I can stand on my feet!

  55. And, again, this is your arguement? A lame insult. Fine.

    I’m an Apple fan, I’m an HD fan. I support the AppleTV. I think video podcasts are 99% stupid, but encourage the market for their true audience. I do not agree with you in respect for the demand for HD. I don’t agree that podcasts with crappy sound and talking heads deserve HD. I don’t think HD should be “wasted” on anything that doesn’t “utilize” the upgrade. I don’t agree with someone who claims AppleTV pressures the market to move to HD which is a huge investment when he himself was given those resources and has been talking about it for months but has, himself, been unable to make the step. You cannot intelligently respond to that, but you accuse me of being insulting and solely anti-Scoble.

  56. And, again, this is your arguement? A lame insult. Fine.

    I’m an Apple fan, I’m an HD fan. I support the AppleTV. I think video podcasts are 99% stupid, but encourage the market for their true audience. I do not agree with you in respect for the demand for HD. I don’t agree that podcasts with crappy sound and talking heads deserve HD. I don’t think HD should be “wasted” on anything that doesn’t “utilize” the upgrade. I don’t agree with someone who claims AppleTV pressures the market to move to HD which is a huge investment when he himself was given those resources and has been talking about it for months but has, himself, been unable to make the step. You cannot intelligently respond to that, but you accuse me of being insulting and solely anti-Scoble.

  57. By the way, I never judge a market based on what I can or cannot do, want or do not want. I judge a market based on what the market can be perceived to be.

  58. >I’m an Apple fan, I’m an HD fan. I support the AppleTV.

    Translation: I’m just here to pick on Scoble and make my pathetic life seem a little better.

    >I think video podcasts are 99% stupid.

    What, not enough Anna Nicole Smith for you?

    >I don’t agree that podcasts with crappy sound and talking heads deserve HD.

    It’s obvious you haven’t watched mine or Rocketboom’s lately, if that’s all you think we’re doing.

    >I don’t think HD should be “wasted” on anything that doesn’t “utilize” the upgrade.

    Neither do I. Which is why I wouldn’t do EVERYTHING I do in HD.

    >I don’t agree with someone who claims AppleTV pressures the market to move to HD

    And, I’m feeling pressure to move to HD. You don’t live in my shoes. So, the fact that you’re speaking for me makes me think you’re just here for a fight. Which you are. Consistently.

    >which is a huge investment

    It’s not a huge investment. It’s one that needs to be considered against other opportunities. For instance, i just got an email asking for transcripts. Those probably are more important. That doesn’t mean that doing HD is not being asked for, though.

    >when he himself was given those resources and has been talking about it for months but has, himself, been unable to make the step.

    I don’t yet have the bandwidth resources, and I just recently got an editor who is catching up on my backlog and doing some creative stuff and wants to try other stuff too, like HD.

    >you accuse me of being insulting and solely anti-Scoble

    If the shoe fits…

  59. By the way, I never judge a market based on what I can or cannot do, want or do not want. I judge a market based on what the market can be perceived to be.

  60. >I’m an Apple fan, I’m an HD fan. I support the AppleTV.

    Translation: I’m just here to pick on Scoble and make my pathetic life seem a little better.

    >I think video podcasts are 99% stupid.

    What, not enough Anna Nicole Smith for you?

    >I don’t agree that podcasts with crappy sound and talking heads deserve HD.

    It’s obvious you haven’t watched mine or Rocketboom’s lately, if that’s all you think we’re doing.

    >I don’t think HD should be “wasted” on anything that doesn’t “utilize” the upgrade.

    Neither do I. Which is why I wouldn’t do EVERYTHING I do in HD.

    >I don’t agree with someone who claims AppleTV pressures the market to move to HD

    And, I’m feeling pressure to move to HD. You don’t live in my shoes. So, the fact that you’re speaking for me makes me think you’re just here for a fight. Which you are. Consistently.

    >which is a huge investment

    It’s not a huge investment. It’s one that needs to be considered against other opportunities. For instance, i just got an email asking for transcripts. Those probably are more important. That doesn’t mean that doing HD is not being asked for, though.

    >when he himself was given those resources and has been talking about it for months but has, himself, been unable to make the step.

    I don’t yet have the bandwidth resources, and I just recently got an editor who is catching up on my backlog and doing some creative stuff and wants to try other stuff too, like HD.

    >you accuse me of being insulting and solely anti-Scoble

    If the shoe fits…

  61. “Translation: I’m just here to pick on Scoble and make my pathetic life seem a little better.”

    More insults.

    “What, not enough Anna Nicole Smith for you?”

    What does this mean? I guess it’s another insult because you know I watch E!TV all day for Anna updates, huh? Whatever…

    “It’s obvious you haven’t watched mine or Rocketboom’s lately, if that’s all you think we’re doing.”

    Rocketboom is different, but still rather pathetic. Not compelling. And you? You’re kidding, right? I’ve seen you and that is a kind description for you. Even if you are wandering someone’s company or showing a screen occassionally.

    “And, I’m feeling pressure to move to HD. You don’t live in my shoes. So, the fact that you’re speaking for me makes me think you’re just here for a fight. Which you are. Consistently.”

    No, I’ve agreed that your an HD geek who wants it and put pressure on himself by hyping it and can’t figure it out. Where I question you is the pressure on the whole market of video podcasters.

    “It’s not a huge investment.”

    Ha, ha, ha! Price me the cheapest end-to-end HD solution you think you can. I want to see what you think is affordable for a market of folks who half the time are using a

  62. “Translation: I’m just here to pick on Scoble and make my pathetic life seem a little better.”

    More insults.

    “What, not enough Anna Nicole Smith for you?”

    What does this mean? I guess it’s another insult because you know I watch E!TV all day for Anna updates, huh? Whatever…

    “It’s obvious you haven’t watched mine or Rocketboom’s lately, if that’s all you think we’re doing.”

    Rocketboom is different, but still rather pathetic. Not compelling. And you? You’re kidding, right? I’ve seen you and that is a kind description for you. Even if you are wandering someone’s company or showing a screen occassionally.

    “And, I’m feeling pressure to move to HD. You don’t live in my shoes. So, the fact that you’re speaking for me makes me think you’re just here for a fight. Which you are. Consistently.”

    No, I’ve agreed that your an HD geek who wants it and put pressure on himself by hyping it and can’t figure it out. Where I question you is the pressure on the whole market of video podcasters.

    “It’s not a huge investment.”

    Ha, ha, ha! Price me the cheapest end-to-end HD solution you think you can. I want to see what you think is affordable for a market of folks who half the time are using a

  63. The Apple TV scores an ace with me for two reasons:

    1 – Video Podcasts. I can sit back and watch them.
    2 – The kids. I bought entire seasons of Spongebob Squarepants and Dora the Explorer. The kids are ecstatic and spousal approval is through the roof. Also, just having the kids watch photos and dance to music.

    Yes, I could do this (excluding the “buy a season of a kids show”) with Media Center, but Media Center ain’t in the rec room and I refuse to buy another Xbox 360 to get it there, let alone force my wife to boot the Xbox; select Media Center; Wait; run through difficult UI, just to get to an episode of Dora.

    Apple TV completely wins in this space.

  64. The Apple TV scores an ace with me for two reasons:

    1 – Video Podcasts. I can sit back and watch them.
    2 – The kids. I bought entire seasons of Spongebob Squarepants and Dora the Explorer. The kids are ecstatic and spousal approval is through the roof. Also, just having the kids watch photos and dance to music.

    Yes, I could do this (excluding the “buy a season of a kids show”) with Media Center, but Media Center ain’t in the rec room and I refuse to buy another Xbox 360 to get it there, let alone force my wife to boot the Xbox; select Media Center; Wait; run through difficult UI, just to get to an episode of Dora.

    Apple TV completely wins in this space.

  65. I agree with Steve. I found the AppleTV to be so easy to use that it enables the exploration of new forms of content in the living room. I believe that it will bring video podcasting to a whole new and much larger audience.

    Audio podcast content has completely changed the way I consume media. I have so much great podcast content that I rarely have time to listen to the stuff that I love. I listen to it when ever I can. The same thing will happen with video podcasting.

    With AppleTV in the livingroom, I simply wont have time to watch broadcast television any more because I will be busy watching great podcast content.

    I think that this will have a tremendously positive effect on our society … http://podslug.com/blog/?p=90

  66. I agree with Steve. I found the AppleTV to be so easy to use that it enables the exploration of new forms of content in the living room. I believe that it will bring video podcasting to a whole new and much larger audience.

    Audio podcast content has completely changed the way I consume media. I have so much great podcast content that I rarely have time to listen to the stuff that I love. I listen to it when ever I can. The same thing will happen with video podcasting.

    With AppleTV in the livingroom, I simply wont have time to watch broadcast television any more because I will be busy watching great podcast content.

    I think that this will have a tremendously positive effect on our society … http://podslug.com/blog/?p=90

  67. Point is that Apple – or Sony or MS – still have time to own the HD space. It’s early days yet. I presume there were/are a lot of engineering compromises on the ATV to hit the price spot they were targeting, and I doubt it could consistently render all H264 HD content without stuttering or over-heating, given that it causes the fans to start going at full speed on a Mac Mini.

    More to the point, I doubt anyone can currently hit that price point without it also being subsidised by a content sales model like the PS3 or XBox.

    Apple’s focus is always on doing ‘less’ well – ‘it just works’ and all that.

    As for ‘fuzziness’ . . . I’ve always found Apple’s DVD software player to be fuzzy compared to Quicktime. Perhaps there’s some issue with their scaling routines that causes output to become blurry at certain resolutions?

    The other question is whether Apple will ‘upgrade’ the ATV to support some of the services people are hacking in – i.e. Joost. I can understand why they won’t do Div-X (name the amount of legitimate content in Div-X format) but I can see the value in supporting other on-line video models. (Lest we forget, Jobs is also CEO at Disney, so he’s also – in another role – pushing the ABC player model).

  68. Point is that Apple – or Sony or MS – still have time to own the HD space. It’s early days yet. I presume there were/are a lot of engineering compromises on the ATV to hit the price spot they were targeting, and I doubt it could consistently render all H264 HD content without stuttering or over-heating, given that it causes the fans to start going at full speed on a Mac Mini.

    More to the point, I doubt anyone can currently hit that price point without it also being subsidised by a content sales model like the PS3 or XBox.

    Apple’s focus is always on doing ‘less’ well – ‘it just works’ and all that.

    As for ‘fuzziness’ . . . I’ve always found Apple’s DVD software player to be fuzzy compared to Quicktime. Perhaps there’s some issue with their scaling routines that causes output to become blurry at certain resolutions?

    The other question is whether Apple will ‘upgrade’ the ATV to support some of the services people are hacking in – i.e. Joost. I can understand why they won’t do Div-X (name the amount of legitimate content in Div-X format) but I can see the value in supporting other on-line video models. (Lest we forget, Jobs is also CEO at Disney, so he’s also – in another role – pushing the ABC player model).

  69. “My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.”

    20 emails from within your relatively small demographic and you that leads you to draw a conclusion? Sheesh. With that type of market research, no wonder Microsoft never listened to you.

  70. “My inbox. More than 20 emails received so far. That’s enough for me to get interested in providing higher resolutions.”

    20 emails from within your relatively small demographic and you that leads you to draw a conclusion? Sheesh. With that type of market research, no wonder Microsoft never listened to you.

  71. You guys all have to chill a little … get outside – you know, fresh air – a walk in the park or along the beach.

    (love one another …)

  72. You guys all have to chill a little … get outside – you know, fresh air – a walk in the park or along the beach.

    (love one another …)

  73. >cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times

    Ahhh, so there is going to be a use for multi-core processors after all :-)

  74. >cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times

    Ahhh, so there is going to be a use for multi-core processors after all :-)

  75. >Ahhh, so there is going to be a use for multi-core processors after all
    No, we need them to run the multiple embedded Flash scripts in your typical mySpace page!

  76. >Ahhh, so there is going to be a use for multi-core processors after all
    No, we need them to run the multiple embedded Flash scripts in your typical mySpace page!

  77. “The Apple TV is definitely putting pressure on videobloggers to deliver a higher resolution version of our shows, which will prove troubling to deliver for a variety of reasons (I record my shows on tape in HD, which looks glorious, but don’t currently capture those tapes into the Mac in a high res format cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times).”

    ———

    I disagree. Video bloggers have no need to release HD video or even SD (i.e. 640×480) video. YouTube has shown that people will gladly watch horrible 320×240 video. Nobody expects HD or SD video in a video blog. Users want something that downloads quickly, not HD or SD video. They’ll play the video at full-screen and live with the resultant blur. (Of course, you can’t do that with YouTube; I assume that’s because Flash is horrible at scaling, so it’s disallowed altogether.)

    Note: The above doesn’t apply to situations where video quality is of great importance (like movie or video game trailers); but it does apply to the vast majority of video blogs and stuff like channel9.

  78. “The Apple TV is definitely putting pressure on videobloggers to deliver a higher resolution version of our shows, which will prove troubling to deliver for a variety of reasons (I record my shows on tape in HD, which looks glorious, but don’t currently capture those tapes into the Mac in a high res format cause I just can’t deal with the file sizes and, mostly, compression times).”

    ———

    I disagree. Video bloggers have no need to release HD video or even SD (i.e. 640×480) video. YouTube has shown that people will gladly watch horrible 320×240 video. Nobody expects HD or SD video in a video blog. Users want something that downloads quickly, not HD or SD video. They’ll play the video at full-screen and live with the resultant blur. (Of course, you can’t do that with YouTube; I assume that’s because Flash is horrible at scaling, so it’s disallowed altogether.)

    Note: The above doesn’t apply to situations where video quality is of great importance (like movie or video game trailers); but it does apply to the vast majority of video blogs and stuff like channel9.

  79. “Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.”

    “Umm, no. I presented rational, real reasons. You are largely trying to just dismiss me. Boo hoo.”

    ————

    Goebbels, you can disagree with Scoble without being disagreeable.

    The worst thing about the internet is the drastic decrease in simple politeness. Everyone is free to flame, so they do. They say things that they’d never say in person.

  80. “Everything about you is always an anti-Scoble rant. It clouds your vision.”

    “Umm, no. I presented rational, real reasons. You are largely trying to just dismiss me. Boo hoo.”

    ————

    Goebbels, you can disagree with Scoble without being disagreeable.

    The worst thing about the internet is the drastic decrease in simple politeness. Everyone is free to flame, so they do. They say things that they’d never say in person.

  81. Brit,

    I had my mac mini in my living room with a video out to my TV … I wanted to be able to watch zefrank and other great video podcast content there. The poor quality made it hard to enjoy … I assume that most people who are watching video podcasts on their TVs are saying the same thing … no?

    I don’t think it has to be HD quality … I would be happy with VHS quality … but it needs to improve in my view.

    Erik

  82. Brit,

    I had my mac mini in my living room with a video out to my TV … I wanted to be able to watch zefrank and other great video podcast content there. The poor quality made it hard to enjoy … I assume that most people who are watching video podcasts on their TVs are saying the same thing … no?

    I don’t think it has to be HD quality … I would be happy with VHS quality … but it needs to improve in my view.

    Erik

  83. IMHO Apple TV is a piece of junk. It seems like a Microsoft product
    I bought it, connected to my HD TV, to my WiFi and… I spent hours trying to make it work with iTunes (note I am an electronic engineer with 10yrs experience in IT).
    Results:
    Streaming worked no longer than 20-30 minutes in a row.
    Sync never worked
    The only thing in HD was the screensaver
    Wasn’t able to play my movies (avi, mpg) in a decent resolution

    Said so, I am still an Apple fan. And I must say Apple customer support is EXCELLENT. They took back my AppleTV and gave my money back.
    I couldn’t ask more.

  84. IMHO Apple TV is a piece of junk. It seems like a Microsoft product
    I bought it, connected to my HD TV, to my WiFi and… I spent hours trying to make it work with iTunes (note I am an electronic engineer with 10yrs experience in IT).
    Results:
    Streaming worked no longer than 20-30 minutes in a row.
    Sync never worked
    The only thing in HD was the screensaver
    Wasn’t able to play my movies (avi, mpg) in a decent resolution

    Said so, I am still an Apple fan. And I must say Apple customer support is EXCELLENT. They took back my AppleTV and gave my money back.
    I couldn’t ask more.