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Apple TV named in ‘Worst Gadgets of 2007’ list

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By Charles Starrett

Contributing Editor
Published: Friday, December 14, 2007
News Categories: Apple TV

Popular Mechanics has released its “Top 10 Worst Gadgets of 2007” list, with the Apple TV placing second. “There is nothing wrong with Apple TV. Unfortunately, there’s nothing overwhelmingly right about it, either,” says the article. “The problem with Apple TV isn’t the interface or the hardware, which are up to Apple’s current high standards. The issue is competition. DVRs and Video On Demand have fought their way into American living rooms. The only way Apple could have trumped them was to offer a huge selection of movies and monthly, all-you-can-eat plans. They did neither, becoming an online version of your nearest FYE, with decent (but not surprising) prices, and a spotty selection of new releases and mysterious B movies.” Other notable releases making the list were the Microsoft Zune, Palm’s unreleased Folio, and the much-hyped Ugobe Pleo.

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Comments

1

We knew what it could do.  We knew what it couldn’t do.  It’s getting such a bad rap.  Yea, lack of updates sucks…but personally.  I love it and probably couldn’t live without it as I use it almost daily and is a main-stay in my entertainment center. 

If you want a quality product that you know works.  Buy an AppleTV.  If you want to complain and whine about lists of features that will cause you some headaches, buy a cheaper, less respectable product.  And be happy with your DiVX. 

Grar.  Sorry for the rant, I just hate all the doggin’ on AppleTV when it never claimed to be something its not.

Happy Friday!
Tom

Posted by twitzgall on December 14, 2007 at 9:05 AM (PDT)

2

I have owned the AppleTV for about six months and find it very good at what it does - play whatever is contained in Itunes.  I mainly use it for audio/video podcasts and music. I have purchased a couple of movies and loaded a commercial DVD or two I never had an expectation of using the AppleTV as a DVR or DVD player.

From my perspective, HD content available from the Itune store would be a great improvement particularly if the option to buy/rent were available.

One of the top 10 worst products of 2007 - totally disagree (But, I not trying to sell magazines either.) .  It does what is promised very well.

Posted by tbsteph in Maylene, AL on December 14, 2007 at 9:09 AM (PDT)

3

i wonder why the ZUNE is not number 1. Also Vista should be on it too wink don’t u guys thing so

Posted by dennis on December 14, 2007 at 9:35 AM (PDT)

4

I love my Apple TV. The movie selection is small and a bit obscure, but Apple is always improving their products and resulting experience…I’m confident this will happen with Apple TV. Meanwhile, it is what it is, it delivers exactly what it’s supposed to, and I enjoy it.

Posted by RNB in Bakersfield, CA on December 14, 2007 at 10:44 AM (PDT)

5

Didn’t Steve Jobs say sometime around WWDC that the Apple TV was kind of a “project”? That told me that they’ll use it as a platform for experiementing with different content and ways of delivering it to the living room. We shouldn’t see this as a finished product, but as a work in progress.

Posted by Jason on December 14, 2007 at 10:49 AM (PDT)

6

I’ve had my Apple TV for about 3 months now and I love it. Since iTunes carries all the TV show’s I’m interested in, I’ve cancelled my cable and watch my shows at my convenience. I’m sure Apple will continue to update it’s features but for now, I’m very satisfied with this product.

Posted by Mary on December 14, 2007 at 10:51 AM (PDT)

7

I bought an Apple TV not to replace my satellite service or my DVR.  I purchased the Apple TV to replace my IPOD Dock with something that can easily update and organize my music for my entertainment center.  The slide shows are a fantastic feature and allows for the opportunity to see pictures without opening the ocmputer or an album. 

I think that this is a great product, especially for those who did not have overzealous expectations.

Posted by Mike on December 14, 2007 at 12:07 PM (PDT)

8

I have owned the Apple TV for about as long as it has been released.  It performs extremely well if you want all computer content with iTunes compatibility to be available to your entertainment center.  Your entertainment center probably has the best speakers and video capability in the home so why wouldn’t you want it delivered to that center from your computer?

I think some are looking for an excuse to take Apple down a notch because of the magnificence of all of their products.  If there is a fault here it can only be that Apple hasn’t simplified their marketing of this product as well as everything else.

Posted by Georgann Chenault on December 14, 2007 at 4:39 PM (PDT)

9

Love how a number of “analysts” are talking about the AppleTV as if it’s on its last leg when no official sales numbers have been released by Apple. 

Oh, it’s one the worst gadget of ‘07? Considering there is no other product that directly competes with the AppleTV, I think Popular Mechanics simply couldn’t comprehend the product.  I say comprehend because if they had actually used it themselves, I doubt it would be on the list.

Posted by NatMusak on December 14, 2007 at 9:05 PM (PDT)

10

It’s a pretty misunderstood product and unfortunately it is a bit too niche for comfort. If iTunes were to have its performance and sharing issues resolved, it could be a much better backbone in a media solution. Americans often think of it in association with content from iTunes, but users like myself, outside the US, have to provide our own. Still, for the average consumer, lack of content would be a sticking point

I’m not an average consumer. Ever since I bought the 5th Gen iPod, I have been ripping video from DVDs. I’ve invested heavily in iTunes in terms of work, not money, and this is perfect for me.

Front Row is now just as good, but there is an advantage to Apple TV. Because it’s most likely smaller than your iTunes library, you can keep a subset on it and it helps to keep track of what you haven’t watched yet. It’s a pain to wade through every podcast looking for new content. Also, using my TV Rotation Technique, you can keep the next few episodes of every TV show on Apple TV. You won’t lose track of what you got up to in a season sequence.

What annoys me most about this type of talk is that it feeds the idea that this is a failure. I think that Apple TV owners are all pretty happy with it. I don’t want Apple to stop developing this product, and that’s what really worries me. It’s too perfect for me to abandon.

Posted by Japester on December 15, 2007 at 5:31 AM (PDT)

11

you know what tec item they forgot to out on the list?
the iPhone!!!

Posted by Japester on December 15, 2007 at 6:11 AM (PDT)

12

It’s definitely a misunderstood product and not such an easy one to explain because of people’s misconceptions.  I think the biggest problem is its name.  Something like “Apple Media Streamer” would have gotten much closer to what it actually does (although I’m sure they could come up with something catchier). As it is, people associate it with typical TV devices (DVR, cable, DVD, etc.) and complain when it doesn’t do those things.

I use mine almost exclusively as a source to feed a very large lossless music library to a high-end audio system.  It sounds great and works brilliantly.

Posted by izimbra on December 15, 2007 at 3:15 PM (PDT)

13

While not a “10 worst” in my mind, aTV is a self-neutered product. It’s not big enough to hold a decent Lossless library. It requires an HDTV yet there is no HD content. The YouTube feature is unfinished at best. All that, and it’s not cheap, either.

A MacMini with a Bluetooth keyboard-mouse and EyeTV, now there’s a great iTunes on a Home Theater setup.

Posted by The Doctor on December 16, 2007 at 5:07 PM (PDT)

14

...i’m confused why people would buy an apple tv, rather than a mac mini, with all of the added capabilities.

granted, it’s a couple hundred dollars more…maybe that’s the deal breaker for some?

Posted by OnlyShawn on December 17, 2007 at 8:50 AM (PDT)

15

Absolutely I am happy with it. I use it prety much every day to Deliver the weeks Current TV Shows and Ones I’ve Archived to about 2TB of Hard Drives. Sure I could go grab the DVD and put it in but this is so much easier

Posted by Scarpad on December 18, 2007 at 11:29 AM (PDT)

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