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I understand it's an iOS device and can be jailbroken but that's as far as I've gotten in my research. I haven't seen any ATV2 apps in Cydia, I'm guessing anything installed to it has to be done over SSH?

Reading about the device, it won't be of use to me until I get a new TV with HDMI input. They have refurbished ATV2s at Apple for $85 which is tempting, I think that's the cheapest iOS device available. Assuming the TV gets upgraded and I get an ATV2, what added capabilities are there after jailbreaking?

It really seems like a device designed to get you to spend more money renting movies or playing music from iTunes. Is it safe to assume that other "already owned" content can be played through it after jailbreaking?

asked 22 Mar '11, 11:35

Pepper's gravatar image

Pepper ♦

edited 22 Mar '11, 11:48

FYI, I went ahead and ordered one. I should have a month to play with it before my new iPad2 arrives which I ordered two days earlier. :)

Now to find out exactly what kind of USB cable it needs and whether I already have one.

(24 Mar '11, 15:14) Pepper ♦ Pepper's gravatar image

I don't have one, but I know that jailbreaking it will enable it to run XBMC. That's "X-Box Media Center" because it was originally written for the XBox (I have it on mine), but it's grown way beyond what it was. This wikipedia article is pretty informative.


answered 22 Mar '11, 11:40

spockers's gravatar image

spockers ♦♦

edited 22 Mar '11, 11:42

Ah, that looks very interesting and exactly what it needs. With that, I think I could playback pretty much any media I have previously stored on my network somewhere.

This is the real reason Apple doesn't like jailbreaking, they (and their media providers) want to be able to control and collect money every time we do anything.

(22 Mar '11, 11:48) Pepper ♦ Pepper's gravatar image

Exactly. I haven't used XBMC in like 2 years, since that's how long my Xbox has been on a shelf gathering dust, but even then it would stream media from anthing, anywhere, even in formats I was sure it wouldn't decode.

(22 Mar '11, 11:52) spockers ♦♦ spockers's gravatar image

XBMC is the main (and almost only) reason to own and jailbreak an AppleTV. Perhaps down the line, if Apple ever allows devs to write apps for the ATV, that might change, but for now, XBMC is it.

The Home Sharing feature in it is ok, if you already have most of your media library in the right format and in iTunes, and being able to send media to it from another iOS device is nice, but it's really XBMC that's the killer app.


answered 22 Mar '11, 22:02

Endareth's gravatar image


Oh, one more thing to keep in mind, if you get an HDTV with 1080p (and who wouldn't these days), Apple has, for some (probably corporate committee-think) reason decided to only output 720p video. The hardware is probably capable of it. I know the cpu is underclocked, just like it is in other iDevices, but they could have thrown a little fan in there (it's not battery-powered so why not) and cranked that CPU to at least it's factory-spec speed.


answered 22 Mar '11, 12:13

spockers's gravatar image

spockers ♦♦

I would have figured at this point any TV capable of 1080p will also accept and process a 720p signal but I will definitely be sure it does, and that it has multiple inputs, before I buy. If it's not a strict hardware limitation, hopefully someone will write a tweak to enable 1080 output soon.

The 720p limitation, and inability to stream something I didn't pay Apple or Netflix for, are the only things making me hesitate to buy one of these. At least one of the two has an existing solution.

(22 Mar '11, 15:37) Pepper ♦ Pepper's gravatar image

A 1080p tv will upscale a 720p source, it's just not going to be as sharp an image as the tv is capable of.

(22 Mar '11, 15:52) spockers ♦♦ spockers's gravatar image

I was just looking at the specs, and it looks like it's just an iPod 4g with an hdmi adapter tacked on and the whole package wrapped in a cool little box. I practically have one already!


answered 22 Mar '11, 12:17

spockers's gravatar image

spockers ♦♦

but obviously, without the touchscreen :)

(22 Mar '11, 15:40) Pepper ♦ Pepper's gravatar image
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Asked: 22 Mar '11, 11:35

Seen: 36,782 times

Last updated: 24 Mar '11, 15:14

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