If you are like me, you’ve been waiting for Apple TV Take 2 to hit for just about a month now. When it was delayed two weeks ago, I stared at my Apple TV in disgust. In it’s current form, it was nothing more than a YouTube viewer, and sometimes, a nice picture screensaver. However, the wait is no more. As part of today’s Tuesday updates, Apple has finally released the Apple TV Take 2 software, and it is available now for download. Aside from a freatly enhanced UI, here are some of the features:
- Movie rentals in both high definition and standard definition
- Flickr photo browsing and slideshows
- .Mac photo gallery browsing and slideshows
- Purchasing of items from iTunes Store from Apple TV
- Browse and view podcasts in iTunes Podcast directory on Apple TV
If you have an Apple TV, fire up Software Update on the device to get the new hotness, and let us know what you think.
Read More | Apple TV Take 2 Guided Tour
Now that we have given you PC Mag’s suggestions for Superbowl Sunday, which HDTVs are actually the public’s choice? According to Amazon, these are their top sellers (with prices):
- Samsung’s 2007 model LNT5265F ($2,199)
- Sharp AQUOS LC32D62U 32 and 42-inch ($889) ($1,349)
- Samsung model LNT4665F ($1,674)
- Toshiba 42HL167 42-inch Regza LCD HDTV ($1,299)
- Sony 32-inch Class BRAVIA S-Series LCD HDTV ($899)
- Sharp AQUOS LC32D62U 46-inch ($1,799)
- Sony KDL-40XBR2 40-inch Bravia XBR LCD HDTV ($1,499)
- Samsung LNT4661F 46-inch LCD HDTV ($1,549)
- Samsung LNT5271F 52-inch LCD HDTV($2,652)
We dig that the prices get lower all the time, but not that the choices will now be twice as extensive.
Read More | Gearlog
While we were pondering the thought of purchasing our own HDTV for Superbowl Sunday plant, we found that PC mag had given their top choices, giving us a suggestion list that was at least a start. Here are their choices:
42-inch JVC LT-42X898
60-inch Pioneer Elite KUROPRO-150FD LG 47 LBX plasma
Panasonic 42-inch TH-42PZ700U
Mitsubishi 62-inch WD-65833 rear-projection TV
Westinghouse 47-inch TX-47F430S
37-inch Toshiba 37HL67 LCD
Perhaps this will help you decide if you are pre-football game shopping. The sales people might think you are more knowledgeable if you call them by their formal numbers.
Read More | PC Magazine
It’s almost Superbowl time again, and CEA predicts that before the big game on Feb. 3, 2.4 million hi-def TVs will be purchased. Tim Herbet, Senior Market Research Director said that other technologies are also influenced, i.e. PC to check stats, IM with friends, and bet on the game. The survey also came to the conclusion that 13% of those who watch SB XLII will also use their cell phone for stats and IMs. Personally, some of us just dig the commercials.
Read More | Electronic House
If you have never seen a Sharp AQUOS then you don’t know the meaning of the word “covet.” The company has just released their new X series of LCD TVs. The panels come in 37, 42, and 47-inches with a thickness of merely 3.44 cm. With full 1920 x 1080 HD, the TVs have a doublespeed LCD of 120 Hz, a contrast ratio of 15000:1, 12-bit BDE color, a 3 1.3a HDMI input, and a 1 bit digital amplifier. Check Akihabara’s site for a gallery’s worth of coveting.
Read More | Akihabara News
We chat with the Sling Media crew and take a special look at the newly announced Slingbox PRO HD. The PRO HD allows you to beam HD to any device, and if you have the upload capacity, to do so with no down-conversion. The PRO HD will be available in Q3 and will retail for $399.99. Coupled with the SlingCatcher, you’ll be able to beam HD-anything to another TV in your house straight up.
Further, the SlingCatcher will function as a standalone device that will allow you to pull a screen or web video stream from a host computer to your TV. For now, you have to coordinate and control it from the host PC, and it still needs to play on the host PC, but the ability to push the video up to your TV without plugging anything additional in is pretty tempting. The Sling Catcher also features 2 USB ports, to allow it to play from external storage. The SlingCatcher will be available around the same time for $249.99 and can push out over HDMI or component. Check the video out for all the grisly details and some great close ups of the Slingers in action.
We visited Sharp at CES and checked out their TV specifically for gamers. It’s the GP3 Series of 1080p LCD TVs, with a 6 millisecond response time, which reduces lag time between your beloved console and the TV. It’s even available in 3 cool colors: Red, White or Black. Available for $1500. We also checked out their D64 Series of 1080p LCDs, 20% lighter and thinner than the previous D62 Series. Sizes range from 32” - 65” and are available now.
We loved AquosNet, an internet service in which up-to-the-minute, customizable information (weather, stocks, sports, traffic, Hollywood news and more) appears on the side of the TV screen at the push of a button. AquosNet is free with the SC94 and D74 Series.
Sony showed up in force for CES 2008 with a bevy of Blu-ray players in tow. Check the video above for a good run down of the Blu-ray technology. Some of the new interactive features are sure to impress, although many of the features have been available within HD DVD for some time.
Take note of the awkward cut that occurs when we ask them about the whole format war thing and the fact that studios are jumping over to Blu-ray left and right. That is when they stopped and told us they didn’t want to talk about that subject. We pushed the issue a bit, but they wouldn’t budge, so we just cut that portion out. Not sure what the big deal was though, I mean, it seems victory may be at hand for the Blu-ray side of things.
We talk to AMD‘s Marketing VP, Pat Moorhead about the Smart House “portal” they had set up at CES. In contrast to our last post, they were much more open this time and let me ask just about any questions I asked, including questions about their roadmap and some very cool details about their new “Black” edition, incredibly overclocker-friendly CPU. We also learn more about their mobile device chipset and hear that we’ll be able to output HD content from cell phones and other mobile devices running on ATI chips within the next year or so, straight to an HDTV. Cool stuff.
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