Writings about Macs, music and more by Kirk McElhearn

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Apple TV

Use Voice Search with the Apple TV

04/03/2014

Amazon introduced its Fire TV yesterday, and one of the features the company touts is “voice search.” Using a tiny microphone in the device’s remote, you will be able to speak when searching for content, instead of pecking out letters by moving a cursor around on your TV screen. For example, you might want to […]

How Apple’s AirPlay Streams Audio

04/01/2014

I got a question from a reader asking how Apple’s AirPlay streams audio. The question specifically asked about how audio files are converted, and whether AirPlay reduces their quality. Apple doesn’t provide much information about AirPlay, and I found a number of articles and forum posts where people described complex testing routines to determine the […]

The Committed Podcast Looks at the Apple TV

03/06/2014

On this week’s episode of The Committed podcast, Ian Schray, Rob Griffiths and I discuss the state of the Apple TV. Once described by Steve Jobs as just a “hobby,” it has become a product category of its own, with 10 million units sold last year, generating $10 billion dollars in content sales and rental. […]

Apple Gives Apple TV a Promotion

01/29/2014

The Apple TV, which Steve Jobs famously once described as “a hobby,” has been given a promotion. When you shop in Apple’s online store, the Apple TV is now a top-of-the-page category of its own. For now, all you see there is the Apple TV itself and its remote – unlike the other categories, where […]

Stream Any Video from a Mac to an Apple TV

08/13/2013

One of the most interesting features of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion is AirPlay Mirroring. You can stream what is displayed on your Mac to an Apple TV (and, presumably, other devices will support this in the future). This is very useful if you want to watch videos in formats that iTunes doesn’t support, such […]

New Apple TV Constantly Dropping Network Connections

03/18/2012

On Sunday mornings, I often like to sit in front of my stereo and listen to music, while I read a book, or the latest New Yorker. This morning, I wanted to listen to a new disc I bought (Towards the Horizon; Modificata; Incantations by Einojuhani Rautavaara), and since I had gotten my new Apple […]

New Apple TV and iTunes Play Counts and Last Played Dates

10/07/2010

With the new Apple TV, and the fact that it’s streaming content from a library, there is one change that may affect some users. The previous model was like a living-room iPod, and acted as such: when you played music, then synced the device to your iTunes library, play counts and last played dates would […]

New Apple TV Has Its Share of Bugs

10/06/2010

I got my new Apple TV today. It’s a nice little device, smaller and especially cooler than the previous model. I have no issues with not being able to store content on the device, and streaming works fine for me. However, it seems that the Apple TV software has a fair number of bugs. While […]