alistairphillips.com

I’m : a web and mobile developer based in the Manning Valley, Australia.


Apples Next Task

We all know that the multimedia experience from an Apple computer is just awesome as you have all the tools that you need at hand.  Quicktime is there to play your movie files, iDVD to play your DVD and iPhoto to organise your family album,

But I often find myself connecting my iBook up to the TV in the lounge to watch video files.  I still cannot believe how easy it was to get my Mac connected to the TV.  This was something that I did attempt a good few years back with a Windows machine but it was such a hassle.

Now not everyone has a Apple laptop that they can quickly move to connect up to the TV.  Perhaps you're sitting with a desktop or simply don't have the space to re-arrange your living room.  So why should you be stuck with watching media files on a small screen?

Ever since Apple has ventured into the Media Centre world I have been wondering what their actual roadmap is for this product.  Microsoft have been very active in promoting their Windows Media Centre Edition operating system and now with the XBOX 360 they will be pushing the features even more.  Already we have people showing how MCE detects when a XBOX 360 has been connected to your network.

The current AirPort Express devices allow you to have "virtual speakers" so that one can stream content from iTunes into any room in your home.  So why not follow the path of evolution and let us transmit digital video to our TVs as well.  Just imagine how awesome this would be if they could get this right.  Combine this with an updated version of FrontRow and Apple will have completely dominated the Media Centre / PVR market.

No longer will you need to buy two devices that in essence duplicate functionality.  You've obviously already got a computer so why should you have to buy a (expensive) MCE device when your start desktop can provide much of the same functionality.  Some people, like myself, don't even have space to shove in a MCE device and would appreciate a small AirPort express style system that plugs direct into the TV.

Now the updated version of FrontRow would feature some type of WiFi remote control allowing you to access DVDs, iTunes and iPhoto all from the comfort of your living room.  No need to spend money on two systems - just have your TV plugged into your AirPort Express and installed the supplied version of FrontRow and begin to experience the power of multimedia streaming.

This would be the ultimate way to get Apple devices into the living room.  The PVR circle will come to a close when Apple later add a TV card to their Macs.  Let's hope that Apple are not too far away from releasing such a system...