Could YouTube be Apple’s ‘iTV’ killer-app?

“With Macworld Expo just over a week away, many expect Apple CEO Steve Jobs to announce further details (and the availability) of the company’s yet to be released set-top-box, codenamed iTV,” Steve O’Hear blogs for ZDNet.

O’Hear writes, “Powered by something similar to Apple’s Front Row media center software, the iTV is designed to get the media content that’s housed on a Mac (music, movies, and photos), streamed to the living room television. However, with its built-in wireless networking (suspected to be the faster 802.11n), why not bypass the Mac and have the iTV connect directly to the internet?”

MacDailyNews Note: Steve Jobs explicitly stated that ‘iTV’ works with both Macs and PCs.

“Anybody who has used Front Row to watch movie trailers streamed directly from Apple’s website, will have wondered why they can’t access other internet-based content in a similar way. For starters, think Flickr for photos, and of course YouTube for video,” O’Hear writes.

O’Hear writes, “The combination of iTunes and DRM-free MP3s provided the ‘killer app’ for the iPod, and YouTube could well do the same for Apple’s soon-to-be released set-top box.”

Full article here.

Steve Jobs gives sneak peek of Apple’s “iTV” wireless set-top box:

32 Comments

  1. “However, with its built-in wireless networking (suspected to be the faster 802.11n), why not bypass the Mac and have the iTV connect directly to the internet?”

    ————–

    I would hope that iTv would work with or without a Mac/PC and have a direct internet connection… Otherwise, consumers that will actually be able to use iTv would be limited to those with a latest Mac or PC equipped with 802.11n…

  2. “Um, because then you WebTV, you know, the biggest piece o’ crap to ever be invented to connect to the web for anything.”

    You speak the truth. There are differences now though.

    WebTV was for 325 line NTSC video (really crappy resolution).

    This would 1080 vertical line high resolution combined with

    broadband and a box running Apple software. I’m just saying

    that if they did pursue that path, it would be more viable because

    of the newer / better technology.

  3. Lots of Nintendo Wiis and PS3s will be browsing the web off their TVs soon. The iTV could easily have a remote control or *gasp* a wireless keyboard…

    Or a tablet ipod that you can connect to it and write on the screen on the occasions that you want to type.

  4. Since iTv has an direct connect ethernet port and the software resides in the iTv box itself, you should be able to use it without a computer. The computer only comes into the equation if you want to stream what is on your computers hard-drive, hopefully iTv will also have a built-in hard-drive too.

  5. damnit, there are only a few days left until the keynote, and this is the best wild speculation we get? youtube content is about like podcast content – 2% good, 98% crap – no way Apple hangs the success of iTV on amateur content like that.

    must…have…decent…mac…rumors…

  6. there’s one word why this can’t be true

    keyboard

    how are you going to search for video’s with just a remote? there’s no point just having a limited selection because you can’t cater for everybody

  7. how are you going to search for video’s with just a remote? there’s no point just having a limited selection because you can’t cater for everybody

    ————–

    iTv has a usb port. Keyboard problem solved.. The wireless Apple keyboard is also an option.

  8. Apple will just make it general Internet access directly from the “iTV.” That’s been done already, and it would be a nice feature. However, I don’t think most people sit on their livingroom sofa and surf the web. What would be better are Apple-controlled tie-ins that use the Internet feature “seamlessly” (like the mentioned movie previews feature) to improve existing products.

    For example:

    * People point out that you don’t get those “special features” that are often on DVDs when you buy a movie from the iTunes Store. Perhaps iTV can be designed to access web-based special features stored on Apple’s servers. These features would only be accessible if you have purchased the movie from the iTunes Store. Apple can include more content than may fit on a DVD, and update the special features so that the customers can get new content for a previously purchased movie, which would be something not doable on DVD.

    * The obvious web-based capability is access to the iTunes Store on the TV screen. It would be through a special version of iTunes designed to work effectively on a TV screen using the remote control.

    * If there is general Internet access, it will be through a special version of Safari optimized to work well on a TV screen using the remote control device.

    The two key aspects are that the user experience be intuitive and seamless (not just a browser window on the TV screen) and controlled by Apple (not YouTube or Google).

  9. The possibilities for the iTV are endless, but in the traditional Apple way it will initially have the single purpose of streaming video and music to your TV set via iTunes. Content will either be bought iTunes content or a DVD in your mac. PC’s may be included since iTunes works on both platforms.

    That doesn’t mean to say that someone will work out how to play ripped DVD content or video streamed from an internet site. Apple may even add some of that functionality as long as it is legal and doesn’t piss off Hollywood.

    The big thing for me is good HD resolution. Obviously H264 can compress HDTV content well and that or a future version may be able to get good quality video in a GB per hour.

    HDTV content is pretty sparse today. Sure we have Buu-ray etc and cable does HDTV content too. But the amount of content available is lame. I’m still waiting for common channels like SciFi, Nat Geo etc to go HD. They clearly have HD content but the cable company still only transmits in SDTV. That’s increasingly irritating me since I pay extra for the HD cable box.

  10. Okay, that’s just nuts. Why would Apple want such crappy quality video? Not to mmention so much of it being violations of copyright.

    There is ZERO chance this is going to happen as this obviously dope-smoking pundit is bloviating about.

  11. Dog Gone, if Apple intends to initially release iTv without being able to bypass the computer then they will be selling to a very limited consumer demographic.. 802.11n is needed to stream movies, and only Macs and Pcs sold in the last 6 months or so do this..

  12. HDTV content is pretty sparse today. Sure we have Buu-ray etc and cable does HDTV content too. But the amount of content available is lame. I’m still waiting for common channels like SciFi, Nat Geo etc to go HD. They clearly have HD content but the cable company still only transmits in SDTV. That’s increasingly irritating me since I pay extra for the HD cable box.

    —————-

    HD content is increasing all the time, not to mention that nearly all prime-time broadcasts from the major networks are now available in HD.

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