iOS apps running on Apple TV

by tomek on January 2, 2012

Little by little the apps are coming to the Apple TV. Hacker and iOS developer Steven Troughton-Smith and a hacker called TheMudKip have made it to run iPhone and iPad apps on an Apple TV 2, jailbroken with Seas0nPass. Using @TheMudkip’s MobileX window manager for iOS, and @chpwn’s MobileLaunchpad launcher to go with it, they managed to get multiple iOS apps running natively on Apple TV, without AirPlay. Later on, they even figured out a way to run iPad applications at a full 720p resolution.

Using a custom springboard, the software that powers the app launcher, also allowed for another new feature: side-by-side apps. This lets you see on the big screen all the applications running at a time, e.g. different chat applications.

“Nick had written this amazing window manager for the iPad that replaced the entire homescreen, allowing you to run multiple apps side by side, and I realized this could enable iOS apps on the Apple TV for the first time. We’ve spent the past 2 days modifying everything to work really well on the Apple TV screen size, etc, and getting apps to run,” Troughten-Smith told CNET.

Since the Apple TV doesn’t have a touch screen, the hackers are using a combination of VNC, SSH and the Apple Remote to launch and navigate apps. However, Troughton-Smith said he is working to make it Apple remote-only.

The hack isn’t publically available yet. For any enterprising hackers who want to make a UIKit Apple TV app, Troughton-Smith published an input library needed to get started (to add Apple TV IR input to an iOS app).

You may also want to read:
Apple TV 3 or Apple TV set?
FireCore releases aTV Flash (black) 1.0 to supercharge the Apple TV 2
How to install aTV Flash (black) 1.0 on Apple TV 2

  • Jhofstra

    Thats not an aptv….he’s on a keyboard on his computer

  • Rockstjernen

    BT stack can make it happen…

  • jockboy

    Get Steven’s name right- it’s Troughton-Smith!!

  • Bbbobjones

    Am i missing something here? I jailbroke my atv 2, installed Plex, XBMC, and Nito TV. it is the most garbage collected in one place ever. On a 16 mbps wired connection, about 90% of the vids dont play. If they do, it’s the crappiest quality, if you’re lucky enough for it to be seen at all.

    Nitotv is worthless. Not one video from plex plays.

    It is actually laughable that anyone considers this a benefit to Apple TV. yea, let’s watch a movie of some kid in a theater, barely able to see, coughing, talking and enjoy it!

    Must be 12 yr olds who just think it’s cool to modify something. I’ll restore back to normal. I’d actually rather pay a couple bucks for great quality than click through a bunch of broken links, watch half of the movie, out of sync, find the other half an hour later and watch that in the worst quality possible.

    If you are thinking about jailbreaking your atv, TRUST ME, it is a horrible move. There is NO benefit. Yes, you can install 3rd party apps, but that’s the problem, they’re 3rd party. They are worthless and not working. Just leave it – believe me, you will want back the time you invest.

  • Icatchchaos

    First of all- clearly you don’t have everything installed that you need. The services you dissed above work awesomely on ATV 2. Not sure why anyone would vent so heavily over something they got for free? Oh well. I’m enjoying my freed device…

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