Update may bring games, controller support to Apple TV this spring



  • Reply 61 of 66
    Originally Posted by timgriff84 View Post

    As opposed to squares?


    Yes, they’re different shapes. That gives a distinct visual clue as to their scope and purpose. It’s why the iPod nano uses circles.


    How do you hide them?


    It’s under Settings/General/Restrictions (or no General; can’t remember). You can hide any you don’t want to see and then rearrange the ones you have left.


    1. Why would I care if they store the design? I'm a consumer not the person they copied it from.


    Right, it’s not like consumers are ever hurt by intellectual property theft¡


    Can't see anywhere what happens when your subscription ends.


    I’d imagine you lose access to all the content.

  • Reply 62 of 66
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,959moderator
    What if an AppleTV could offer everything a PS4 or Xbox One has plus...
    • More games
    • Better games
    • Better performance
    • The Apple ecosystem

    Tim said before that they weren't interested in the console business and has said they don't need to own a content business because Apple hasn't had an issue getting content and I think he might be serious and not just diverting people away from it.

    The Apple TV as it stands uses a processor designed for media playback. It has an older model CPU with cores disabled for low power. To tackle native gaming, that would require putting a much faster modern chip inside. This might push up the cost of the unit. I doubt it would be by much but would be a consideration especially when you have to factor in a $100 controller.

    I'd personally hoped they'd be able to make two models, a $99 media unit and a $199 unit that bundled a touch controller.

    There's no way that it can have better performance than the big consoles yet but it can outperform the PS3 and 360 and those have the latest GTA 5 on them. The PS4 and XBox One are somewhere between 3-10x faster than the old consoles but the extra performance and memory simply goes into improved visuals, which doesn't affect the game much as you can see here with Tomb Raider on PS3 and the definitive edition coming out in the next few weeks on PS4:


    "you can see the actual cloth inside of Lara's t-shirt" :lol: and why would you be looking in there, executive producer of Tomb Raider?

    There's a graphics benchmark for mobile devices and you can see that it would really require the A7 to handle it ok:


    In an older benchmark the A7 is roughly on par with the Intel HD 3000. This can play Tomb Raider with the options turned down at 20-30FPS and it would be optimized for the A7:


    An A7X with a higher power consumption would help and be fine for a mains device.

    One problem is that games like this are over 10GB in size and the Apple TV only has 8GB of storage so it would need both the textures downsampled a bit and 32GB minimum storage to get enough games. Streaming games is an option but making the data center side work is hard.

    Then they need to convince games publishers it's worthwhile putting the games in the store. The $99 Apple TV sells 8 million units per year. I'd expect a $199 unit to sell less than that but the big consoles don't sell in huge volumes either. They've done ok recently at around 4 million units each over 2 months and the average for the old consoles was about 10 million per year.

    Could they convince people to spend $50-60 on a game for an Apple TV? I doubt it but the advantage is digital distribution so every sale is a first time sale. Publishers can easily sell titles at 1/3 the price and make the same revenue from the same overall audience and publishing for the ATV automatically means it works for an audience that is over 10x the size.

    I think the time is right to really get the ball rolling with gaming. The ports of 20 year old games aren't enough, the power is there for modern games and the category is the most profitable category in the App Store.

    If they sell a gaming ATV, they need to make their own controller and that's going to annoy 3rd parties. The ATV unit needs to cost more too. It also wouldn't hurt for them to own a content company like a games studio so they can put out exclusives but if they can get that without doing it internally, that's great. They need to do a subscription thing like Netflix though and realise that the exclusive games will persuade people to purchase new hardware. Hardware is where they make their profit and if they can publish modern games that you can't get on equivalent platforms, it helps push people to buy the newer devices.

    I'd like to see them put more interest in games. There's a stigma around games that they are just for kids or time wasters but the big AAA immersive games have opened up a whole new experience. They're not like Frogger any more. When they are done right, they have powerful narrative, character development, good voice acting and rich environments.


    "Evil is evil. Lesser, greater, middling, makes no difference. The degree is arbitrary, the definitions blurred. If I'm to choose between one evil and another, I'd rather not choose at all"
    ^ That one's about Google (they're the bad guys ;)).


    "There are those that believe the perfect heist lies in the preparation. Some say that it's all in the timing - seizing the right opportunity. Others even say it's the ability to leave no trace behind, be a ghost. For me, it's simple. It's a way of life."
    ^ That one's about Samsung.
  • Reply 63 of 66
    gwmacgwmac Posts: 1,803member

    Fantastic and very informative post as always Marvin. I think you brought up a great idea. A $99 AppleTV which would be a refresh of the current one for media consumption and then a second model perhaps around $199 or even $299 with better specs for games and apps. I doubt it would need to compete with PS4 or Xbox One but if Apple could somehow figure out a way to allow fuller IOS integration to the AppleTV I think they could have a big hit. Casual gamers are potentially a huge market and games like Clash of Clans make as much money as some traditional big game studios now. The biggest challenge I think has always been how do you make apps that are designed for a touch interface easy to use or play on a TV screen. If you use your iPhone or iPad then you would be looking at that display which defeats the purpose. The controller will be the key to the success. 


    The logitech harmony smart remote has allowed me to turn my iPhone and iPad into a very powerful universal remote that controls my Panasonic TV, Pioneer receiver, PS4, and motorized wall mount for TV, and also my DirecTV DVR. It is a fantastic product and just a few years ago that type of universal remote would have cost around $500. This is the kind of simplicity and ease of use Apple needs to bring to the table with a new Apple TV. Perhaps something similar to control all your devices with your iOS device. 

  • Reply 64 of 66
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,686member
    I'll pop back in here to say I think that they will produce two models and one will handle native games ( I can't see games being streamed ). It's important to realise that the 10Gb games will stay, for now, on the "pro" console market. Some of those game devs are locked down by contract to a particular device anyway. Apple will be smart to allow games devs to sell existing iOS games at an upgrade price for full resolution on the Apple TV. But the cost will never be $50 and not more than $5 in most cases.

    In iOS 7 they introduced the game controller classes and sprite kit. That's not for nothing. The controllers are ok for an iPhone game but will come into their own for controlling a console. And of course consoles are always sold with controllers. Which answers the UI problem. The controller buttons control it.
  • Reply 65 of 66
    antkm1antkm1 Posts: 1,441member
    Trust me, the UI on other boxes and tv's are much much worse.
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