updated 01:25 pm EST, Tue January 15, 2008
Apple TV Take 2
Apple chief Steve Jobs today revealed a reworked version of the Apple TV media hub's user interface that is said to be greatly improved from the original, allowing users to pull more content directly from the Internet. The device can now buy music, movies, and TV shows itself, which can sync back to a home computer. It also takes advantage of Apple's new iTunes movie rental service and has the option of receiving iTunes movies in a 720p HD resolution as well as standard definition, Apple says. Owners can now also browse .Mac and Flickr photo accounts directly from the device and create photo screensavers on the fly.
Prices for content are unchanged for the same version of a given video when buying from the hub, and downloads are quick; most videos, even HD, will begin playing in under 30 seconds, Jobs says. iTunes HD rentals cost $5 for new releases and $4 for back-catalog titles. The new feature will be available as a free software update for all Apple TVs. New 40GB models with the features built-in will start at $229 and ship within two weeks from the online Apple Store, as will 160GB models at $329.