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Steve Jobs Drops a hint of the future "media center" at Shareholders meeting.

post #1 of 46
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Read The Whole Story At MacCentral

"Apple CEO Steve Jobs touted the companys forthcoming products as the best Ive ever seen in my life, and told Apple shareholders that the Macs transition to Intel processors will pay off in the long run.

Jobs, Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer, and Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product Marketing Phil Schiller answered investors questions Thursday during Apples annual shareholder meeting at its Cupertino campus.

During the session, the three executives remained typically tight-lipped about Apples future product plans. When pressed by one shareholder about what product releases to expect in the future, Jobs simply said, I cant tell you.

However, Apples CEO didnt let secrecy stop his enthusiasm for those secret products.
The new products in the pipeline are the best Ive ever seen in my life, Jobs said.

Another shareholder requested that the company make the ultimate media center, a personal video recorder that could record television programs and share media on his computer.
We hear you loud and clear, Jobs responded.
"
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post #2 of 46
All you really have to do Steve is buy Elgato.
post #3 of 46
Jobs is still personally fixated on the idea that TV is dumb entertainment. Luckily, he has realized, or been told, that there are plenty of people who like dumb entertainment.


With that background, Jobs is likely to push the Mac as media center. Basically, I think he will claim that the Mac is a born-ready media center and that is what he will push.

The only things that keep a Mac from being the host server of home entertainment is hardware communications (the right jacks and plugs).
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post #4 of 46
The thing which intrigues me is that less Macs than PC's are being recycled. Is it just a matter of Apple being bad at recycling, or are simply less Macs thrown away?
post #5 of 46
I love how such a vague answer is spun into "We're working on a DVR, and we'll ship it in the future."

Here's an alternative interpretation of We hear you loud and clear":

"We heard you the first time. Now sit down and shut up, it's not going to happen."

Seriously, there's this assumption that an Apple DVR is in the works, and while that might be true, I don't think this comment can be taken as proof.
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post #6 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Kickaha
I love how such a vague answer is spun into "We're working on a DVR, and we'll ship it in the future."

Here's an alternative interpretation of We hear you loud and clear":

"We heard you the first time. Now sit down and shut up, it's not going to happen."

Seriously, there's this assumption that an Apple DVR is in the works, and while that might be true, I don't think this comment can be taken as proof.

Ditto...
post #7 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by jccbin
Jobs is still personally fixated on the idea that TV is dumb entertainment. Luckily, he has realized, or been told, that there are plenty of people who like dumb entertainment.


With that background, Jobs is likely to push the Mac as media center. Basically, I think he will claim that the Mac is a born-ready media center and that is what he will push.

The only things that keep a Mac from being the host server of home entertainment is hardware communications (the right jacks and plugs).

That is assuming a lot, and more in line with the Apple from before Jobs return, when they did have TV tuners and AV boards for their computers, than after Jobs came back. Since then Apple has resisted the the integration when a single product will do a better job, and makeing that product the best on the market for it's intended purpose.

The iPod is a great example. Sure things have been added, but they have not take away from it's ability to cary out it's main function.

I think there is a very good chance that we will see the same in the video market. The main reason is that dedicated, highly integrated devices can be made for a lower cost than an ALL-IN-ONE, does everything approach. Whatever Apple comes out with for video will have a lot more competition than the iPod did when it came out.
post #8 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by jccbin
Jobs is still personally fixated on the idea that TV is dumb entertainment. Luckily, he has realized, or been told, that there are plenty of people who like dumb entertainment.

IIRC, he just said that when people watch T.V. they turn their brain off, and I think that's true. You also have to remember that Steve dumps on any type of product that Apple isn't currently shipping. Remember what he said about tiny flash players? "You use them once and then throw them in your drawer"

I think he just does this so competitors have a harder time guessing what they're working on.
post #9 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Zandros
The thing which intrigues me is that less Macs than PC's are being recycled. Is it just a matter of Apple being bad at recycling, or are simply less Macs thrown away?

I'd say from experience that less Macs actually get thrown away. Look at the prices people pay for used Macs. Have you ever heard of anyone paying such prices for used PCs? I've also got a terrible feeling of guild for even considering throwing away an old Mac that works perfectly. Apple hardware *seems* to last quite a bit longer than its PC equivalent.

My 5 year old son was using my wife's old rev. A iMac until we moved late last year. At that point we donated it while trying to condense our posessions a bit. I still regret it and wish I'd kept it. It was 8 years old at that point. Now a co-worker of mine who'd heard I liked Macs gave me an old beige Powermac with a 300MHz G3 and a truckload of extras (monitor, tablet, keyboard, mouse and software. It functions as well as the day it was built. Very few PCs have this sort of longevity.
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post #10 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Zandros
The thing which intrigues me is that less Macs than PC's are being recycled. Is it just a matter of Apple being bad at recycling, or are simply less Macs thrown away?

Macs have a longer shelf life than Window machines. For a start they don't get bunged up with Spyware and viruses!!

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post #11 of 46
You will hardly ever find a Mac in a landfill/recycling plant (unless it is totally FUBR). Mac owners are quite loathe to sell their perfectly functioning computer less throw them away. They become heirlooms or are resigned to a small corner of a spare room for children to mess about with.

There is a lot to be said for the build quality and design aesthetics of older Mac computers.
post #12 of 46
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Zandros
The thing which intrigues me is that less Macs than PC's are being recycled. Is it just a matter of Apple being bad at recycling, or are simply less Macs thrown away?

I have every mac I have ever bought. -1 (I should have said almost every Mac)
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post #13 of 46
Thread Starter 
BTW , now that we have cleared that up... Can we stay on topic.
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post #14 of 46
Oh yes! What were we discussing? \
Yep, Apple could have a really great total media center in the pipeline.
Hard disk (ala TiVo) recording and playback etc.
Total wireless access to your Mac around the home for video and music.

I agree that we must have a good array of input/output connectivity on future Macs. HDMI is a must.
post #15 of 46
what effect would TIVO's court win have on any DVR functionality built into future macs or media center PC's for that matter? Apple might be unwilling to pay a licensing fee per machine to TIVO.
post #16 of 46
apple should buy tivo..



Sorry, if they can't get adobe then tivo...


or...

not!
post #17 of 46
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by TednDi
apple should buy tivo..



Sorry, if they can't get adobe then tivo...


or...

not!

They should have bought tivo earlier. That court win just made tivo rich!
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post #18 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by MiMac
Oh yes! What were we discussing? \
Yep, Apple could have a really great total media center in the pipeline.
Hard disk (ala TiVo) recording and playback etc.
Total wireless access to your Mac around the home for video and music.

I agree that we must have a good array of input/output connectivity on future Macs. HDMI is a must.

I'm sure I read Apple are in a consortium to build a universal interface with the likes of Intel? Maybe we have to wait until such design comes to fruitation first.
Remember Apple way of thinking is to make things simple.

I'ts a good possibility we may have to wait until 'n' wirless protocol comes our way to be ablel to handle large data streams.

I also think that Apple will want the iPod video to come out first, with content providers already signed up to provide material. This way Apple will not be seen as a company who encourages recording of copyright material.

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post #19 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by jccbin
Jobs is still personally fixated on the idea that TV is dumb entertainment. Luckily, he has realized, or been told, that there are plenty of people who like dumb entertainment.

Unfortunately, steve's own biases drive Apple as well. He's a great innovation guy, but his personality makes him a double edged sword.
post #20 of 46
Apple building a PVR is way too "me too" for Apple.

Now, that having been said, Apple will build something for home video entertainment, I suspect.

I think you have to look down the road 8-10 years as to what the market will be, then ask yourself what what will Apple build?

The entire video landscape will have changed by then as we trade 500 channels of cable or Satellite for 50,000 channels or 'Net video. PVR's? Who needs 'em when all video is "on demand" anyway? There's enough video on the Web now to make this worth having, but it is often too hard to find and categorize. Apple is pretty good at that.

The tricky issue isn't the technology it's here now. Like the Web, which has embarrassingly devalued writing (freelancers are making pennies on the dollars in many cases now as compared with five years ago) because somehow Web ads are worth less than print ads, there has to be a business model. I'm hoping, as ABC has done, it involves ads built into the streams that people have to watch, as opposed to a pay-per-view model, which Web users haven't embraced.

Can Apple create a business model that make 'Net video profitable? My guess is yes, based on iTunes.

With Apple, it's never really the technology, but rather the process that makes products successful.
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post #21 of 46
....remember eWorld
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post #22 of 46
There was a post I saw recently floating around suggesting that apple should make a TV. I think this is a really great idea, and I believe it will happen eventually. Maybe not for a few years, but within the next five I hope. I know they would do a great job if they did this, and who knows maybe they could sell a cool shiny aluminium Apple TV bundled with the 'seeked by many' Media centre.

Just imagine an apple TV, that contains a 250GB/500GB hard drive (like iMac), an internal set of 12watt speakers (like panny Viera), the beefed up elegant Front Row Full-Blown media centre, side-load slot load Superdrive, comes with the apple remote, and is available in three sizes 26", 32" etc. As a build to order you can get OS X, keyboard and the usual Mac stuff. But you have to pay extra.

The standard version of the 'Apple Media TV' contains the TV, and the remote and the hard drive and software to make it work!
(everything is inside the TV, hard drive etc. all built in)8)

p.s. If apple did this I don't think I'd be the only happy camper. (blast me all you want)
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #23 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by BenRoethig
All you really have to do Steve is buy Elgato.

He already "bought" several of their programmers
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post #24 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Zandros
The thing which intrigues me is that less Macs than PC's are being recycled. Is it just a matter of Apple being bad at recycling, or are simply less Macs thrown away?

Macs have a higher resale value even when used, you'd be a moron to toss them.
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post #25 of 46
Uh I have my mac mini driving my 42 HD plasma display and it looks great with excption of the overscanning. The only other thing I feel like I need is a bluray burner but I'm sure we'll see those in the spring ish 07 revision. Apple doesn't NEED a dvr though, higher rez downloads, streaming, I don't know but as far as I'm concerned the macmini is only about 2 steps away from making the media canter leap even if front row sucks(and it does) I rip my VD's to hard disk and or use the dvd r in the mini connect it via DVI and away we go music and 5.1 through the optical port. the ports all worked out fine for me and I never panned on connecting a computer to my HD display.

Geuss the pint is... it works now and apple really needs is the media and distribution.
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post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by onlooker
The new products in the pipeline are the best Ive ever seen in my life, Jobs said.

I should hope so, if their products didn't get better with time we'd still be using G3s.

PS, Apple's remote may be troublesome for a media machine.

Yeah, it's simple, but that's because they haven't put in recording yet. When they do that, you'd better believe you're going to want more buttons.

One question though: Why in god's name doesn't Quicktime support mpeg2?? Yeah, it'll be dead as soon as DVDs start moving to better media, but that wont be for 6+ years!11one1one! HD's great and all but for lossless transcoding into .vob format, mpeg2 is is the only option.

Yes, I know, you can pay Apple to get a QT plugin for mpeg2.. but why?
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post #27 of 46
MPEG2 Licensing Fees.

Apple can either absorb them, or you can pay them.

Since they're pushing MPEG4, and prior to that, Sorenson3 (oy, what a licensing fiasco that turned out to be), they've never had a solid business model for paying the fees for you.
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post #28 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by slughead
He already "bought" several of their programmers

Buy the company and you get botht the software and hardware. Not like its something Apple hasn't done before.
post #29 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by mmcgann11
Apple building a PVR is way too "me too" for Apple.

If it wasn't for Steve Jobs' persoal biases against T.V., Apple should have been at the forefront. Instead they let Microsoft beat them to the punch. What they than do now is do it better.
post #30 of 46
Thread Starter 
TV networks are letting you download shows that are being sold at the iTMS for free, but they have commercials. The Mac user-base is something that SJ listens to. SJ realizes that millions of Mac users love our favorite shows. I watch 24.
Even if SJ doesn't have the time to get into, and try to enjoy a show. He knows he can sell the shit out a Mac Home media center with a built in PVR to the millions of people that do.
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post #31 of 46
Someone should do a mock-up of an apple all in media centre TV
(me no apps to do one)
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #32 of 46
Think Different.

Apple offers TV programs on iTunes. Why bother with a DVR and all that extra hassle? You want it, buy it and watch it whenever you want. There are none of the uncertainties involved with DVRs (like the industry they depend on trying to kill them), and the interface is pretty sleek, too. You have all the hard drive space you want.

Right now, Apple and the networks are doing a trial run, just to see how well this works in practice. If it works well, expect Apple to do an end run around everyone's assumptions and turn every computer with iTunes into a "media center PC" with the blessing of the content providers. What used to be TV is then simultaneously DVR'd by default and no longer dependent on advertizer revenue for money, which means no skipping ads and more creative freedom. And, if Apple does it right, it means much more of an in for independent and shoestring-budget work as well as the slick stuff.

No more paying for premium cable just to get that one network so you can watch those two shows. And if you prefer the current way, because for instance you leave the TV on all the time, well, the current way will still be there.

Assuming that the trials have been successful, the only thing that could go wrong is the passage of that stupid bill that kills network neutrality...
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post #33 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Amorph
Think Different.

Apple offers TV programs on iTunes. Why bother with a DVR and all that extra hassle? You want it, buy it and watch it whenever you want. There are none of the uncertainties involved with DVRs (like the industry they depend on trying to kill them), and the interface is pretty sleek, too. You have all the hard drive space you want.

Right now, Apple and the networks are doing a trial run, just to see how well this works in practice. If it works well, expect Apple to do an end run around everyone's assumptions and turn every computer with iTunes into a "media center PC" with the blessing of the content providers. What used to be TV is then simultaneously DVR'd by default and no longer dependent on advertizer revenue for money, which means no skipping ads and more creative freedom. And, if Apple does it right, it means much more of an in for independent and shoestring-budget work as well as the slick stuff.

No more paying for premium cable just to get that one network so you can watch those two shows. And if you prefer the current way, because for instance you leave the TV on all the time, well, the current way will still be there.

Assuming that the trials have been successful, the only thing that could go wrong is the passage of that stupid bill that kills network neutrality...

Lets see here, Apple can get sell a $1.99 t.v. episode or a $1000 computer. Gotta sell the episode.
post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by BenRoethig
Lets see here, Apple can get sell a $1.99 t.v. episode or a $1000 computer. Gotta sell the episode.

Apple can sell whatever computer the end user wants (greasing adoption by making it work with whatever computer they've already bought), and as many $1.99 episodes as the end user wants. What's missing from my PowerBook that this hypothetical box would need?

Besides, to some degree, you do have to look at the long term. There are a lot of reasons (many political, or IP-based) why dedicated media computers are non-starters. Since computers are hard-wired, and entertainment media is digital (or readily digitized), it makes more sense to fit the entertainment to the computers than vice versa. Besides, anything that lowers the cost to entry will help spur adoption of this new thing. Apple can set the bar at $1000 and do as well as everyone else who's tried that, or they can set the bar at $1.99 for a taste of how it works, and then show off the way their machines make it work so well (remotes, Front Row, iLife, etc.).

Apple can also reach out to PC users this way. As hard as it may be to believe, some people are not going to shell out $1k on a platform they don't know about so they can watch TV on it. MS already offers one, so that's the safer alternative. Apple not only gets business from them anyway, but they strengthen their brand in the same way that iTunes has among people who aren't familiar with Apple. And Apple does have a vested interest in making this work well enough at least for people who don't have Macs and won't buy them: In order to pull this off, Apple has to achieve a critical mass of sales of TV episodes. The more sales, the more clout Apple has with the industry. So restricting sales to Mac users is counterproductive. Restricting sales to users of one as yet unreleased Mac is frankly absurd. I suppose Apple could do things the way everyone else has, but why? What recommends that approach, except for the fact that it's the only one anyone else has ever tried?
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The Mayflies - Black earth Americana. Now on iTMS!
Becca Sutlive - Iowa Fried Rock 'n Roll - now on iTMS!
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"...within intervention's distance of the embassy." - CvB

Original music:
The Mayflies - Black earth Americana. Now on iTMS!
Becca Sutlive - Iowa Fried Rock 'n Roll - now on iTMS!
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post #35 of 46
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by jccbin
Jobs is still personally fixated on the idea that TV is dumb entertainment. Luckily, he has realized, or been told, that there are plenty of people who like dumb entertainment.



I wonder why people misquote what he said, so long ago, and take it so far out of context?
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post #36 of 46
I still like the idea of a sub-$300 box (with a remote) that sits next to my DVD player, supports HDTV and 7.1, plugs into ethernet (and the next wireless standard), and allows me to watch or listen to the content served up by my computer (either a Mac or a PC, but of course a Mac does it better). Much like the airport express with AirTunes, except it supports other media and has an onscreen display and remote control. None of this messy DVR, cable, satellite, broadcast stuff... just a simple media playback mechanism. Download content from iTMS, play it on your existing TV system.

I'd buy two. Today.
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post #37 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Programmer


I'd buy two. Today.

you'd probably get one with the money you'd be spending for all those features....
post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by Programmer
I still like the idea of a sub-$300 box (with a remote) that sits next to my DVD player, supports HDTV and 7.1, plugs into ethernet (and the next wireless standard), and allows me to watch or listen to the content served up by my computer (either a Mac or a PC, but of course a Mac does it better). Much like the airport express with AirTunes, except it supports other media and has an onscreen display and remote control. None of this messy DVR, cable, satellite, broadcast stuff... just a simple media playback mechanism. Download content from iTMS, play it on your existing TV system.

I'd buy two. Today.

Exactly my thought.

What everyone here needs to recognize is that people do NOT want to hook their computers up to their TVs, yes the functionality can be nice in some circumstances, but for 99% this is far too complicated. You just want to click one of two buttons and watch what you want without the hastle.

What I see is a small Mac mini like box with HDMI/DVI ports, Audio out port, a simple yet elegant remote ala the current Apple remote but bigger and a few more buttons, "Front Row +" that allows you to dish up your iTunes music from your computer or directly from the box, as well as video in the same manor.

NO DVR, instead have an expanded version of the current iTunes video store, with a simple click to buy option that can be directly accessed from the interface. This would not be a fully functional computer, but a media only subset of the Mac OS, to keep things simple.

If we are lucky, you could have the option to download the videos free of charge, but they will have commercials and will have an expiration date (to keep the commericals up to date) at which point you could redownload the video. Hopefully content would be larger than 320x240... maybe even HD.

Of course a large HD would be necessary, perhaps 350 or 500GB. Embedded processor, graphics, minimal features to cut down on cost.

This box would not need an Optical drive, no keyboard/mouse, and would focus entirely on video/music/podcasts/videopodcasts.

Simplicity would be the key, an area that Microsoft has utterly failed in with Windows MCE, as Steve has pointed out by making fun of the MS remote (I played with one at Best Buy once and my eyes nearly popped out, it has more buttons than any two remotes ive ever seen).

Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity...

"Front Row in a Box"

Nothing more, nothing less.

Just my 2¢
post #39 of 46
And the remote having a lcd so you can quickly view the next song to play or go through your/music/video content in iTunes etc.

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post #40 of 46
Quote:
Originally posted by jimbo123
And the remote having a lcd so you can quickly view the next song to play or go through your/music/video content in iTunes etc.


Might as well give the iPod nano some remote-like functionality, then.
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