There are apps in the App Store that can do similar things (e.g. IMDb, Fandango), but Showreel is claimed to be the first AirPlay-enabled app that lets you watch full length HD movie trailers on Apple TV 2. Although the developer promises to “showcase nothing but the latest and greatest movies”, the movies are, well, not the latest releases and the collection is still quite small. On a good side, trailers are updated weekly, there are no ads and pre-trailer commercials, and the browsing experience on iPad as well as viewing trailers on the big screen in 720p is great. The app is iPad only.
Not later than yesterday, we wrote about Apple’s rumored plans not to push any hardware update for the Apple TV this fall and instead focus on software updates… and here it is: the Coupertino-based company just released Apple TV Software Update 4.3 (build 8F455) that adds Vimeo support and – more importantly – the ability to purchase TV shows from iTunes directly from your Apple TV.
Apple has already confirmed that shows purchased on Apple TV can be re-downloaded on other iOS devices (TV shows has been added to the “Purchased” sections of iTunes on both iOS and Mac/PC applications). All the shows previously purchased on other iOS devices or with iTunes automatically show up as available to play on Apple TV.
Concord Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told AppleInsider that “his industry checks have turned up no evidence that Apple plans push a hardware revision to the Apple TV into production during the third quarter .”
Instead, Apple will probably focus on software updates. The company already announced that iOS 5 will feature AirPlay mirroring that lets wirelessly display everything you do on your iPad 2 right on your HDTV through Apple TV 2. It is believed that this feature will be also available for iPhone 4 and upcoming iPhone 5.
The fact that Steve Jobs has no trust in set-top box as a device that could revolutionize the TV market makes many people think Apple may decide to build televisions. Well, that may be a reality soon as DailyTech reports that Apple “is teaming up with a major OEM to sell iOS-powered, Apple-branded displays.”
According to the former Apple executive who anonymously spoke to DailyTech, Apple plans to bundle Apple TV and iTunes inside physical television sets. The source claims that Apple is teaming up with a major supplier (Samsung?) to provide the physical televisions, which will be rebranded as Apple television sets. The source believed a fall launch was in order, but the product could launch as late as next year.
Firemint has just announced that its Real Racing 2 HD will be the “first title to support full screen wireless gaming over AirPlay”. According to the developer, this won’t be just mirroring – the players will be able to play Real Racing 2 HD on their big screens without a cable, while their iPad 2 displays racing telemetry in real-time. “No black borders, no wires – just iOS racing at its finest,” the company promises. The new release of Real Racing will take advantage of Firemint’s dual-screen technology, allowing a console-style gaming experience similar to Nintendo’s Wii U.
Among the tons of the new features that will come to our iDevices this fall along with iCloud and iOS 5, there are two Apple TV2-related features. The first one is Photo Stream – a special Photo Stream album on your Apple TV 2 will let you access your photos stored in iCloud. iCloud’s Photo Stream service automatically uploads the photos you take or import on any of your devices and wirelessly pushes them to all your devices and computers.