Apple TV Take 2

Among the other updates Apple has also released Apple TV Take 2 and it’s available for update through your Apple TV settings menu (or you can wait for it to happen automatically). I installed the update today. I took about two minutes to download and another five to do the actual installation.

There’s a new menu interface that no longer looks like Front Row at the top levels. Once I started browsing content the interface looked like Front Row. Apple as a guided tour of Apple TV available.

I had rented a movie shortly after Macworld and had avoided watching it so I could try it with Apple TV. I had five days left on the rental and was running out of time. Transferring it to the Apple TV was fairly straightforward but needs to be done manually since the rented movie can only be on on device at a time. The rented movies appear on the Apple TV’s movies tab and took about 2 minutes to transfer over 802.11n.

I have a standard def TV so I didn’t bother looking for a high-def movie. The quality is better than my standard-def cable TV and looks about the same as a regular DVD when viewed from my couch.

I browsed the rentals through Apple TV and was pleasantly surprised to find that the previews started almost immediately when selected.

I was also surprised to see that the Apple TV doesn’t seem to differentiate between content on iTunes on my iMac and content on Apple TV itself. If iTunes was running I could browse content seamlessly and the video would stream when I selected it to play. Very nice.

Movies can also be rented directly through Apple TV. In typical Apple fashion the interface is easy to use and they make it easy to turn over your money.

It looks like Apple is moving Apple TV out of the hobby category.