Fixed my Apple TV Problem

Having had an issue with my Apple TV, I have now managed to fix it by the simple expedient of unplugging it from the power lead and plugging it back in.

I did try logging out and back in again, this didn’t work.

I am slightly annoyed that the solution wasn’t available from the Apple TV menu, a restart option, or even the option to turn the device off (and not just sleep). This means people could be resetting their Apple TV, when all they actually need to do is turn it off and back on again.

Another problem with my Apple TV

Noticed a problem with my Apple TV in that I can’t rent any movies on it….

Normally when you use the Apple TV, on the Movies tab it should look something like this.

However on my Apple TV all I can see is the In Theatres option and no others. I am logged in, but this doesn’t seem to make a difference, I know I am logged in as I can use Home Sharing to access my iTunes collection on my iMac. I know the Apple TV has access to the internet as I can view the movie trailers (as well as other content from the Internet tab).

Things I need to try are:

1. Logging out and logging back in again with my Apple ID.

2. Reset the Apple TV, this means then reconfiguring it for both my wireless network and logging in again with my Apple ID.

3. Restore the Apple TV to it’s factory state, though this means as well as reconfiguring access to my wireless network, logging in once more, I will also need to install the two recent updates.

Hopefully the first option will work, otherwise it’s reset and restore time.

Problems with Apple TV

Last night I was trying to watch a TV Show that I had downloaded from iTunes onto my iMac through my Apple TV. It was Jeeves And Wooster if you are interested.

However the Apple TV couldn’t find my iTunes library on my iMac. I knew that iTunes was running, as I had just plugged in my iPad to sync and charge. However as far as the Apple TV was concerned, it wasn’t there and it couldn’t find it.

After a lot of running about between office and the TV I found that the issue was that iTunes had a dialogue box open, asking me if I wanted to update the iPad, and that was stopping iTunes from sharing it’s content to the Apple TV.

After unplugging the iPad and restarting iTunes, everything worked and we could sit down and watch Jeeves and Wooster.

Interestingly, though I can buy Jeeves and Wooster from Amazon for just £11.17 I have been buying it by the season from the iTunes Store. Yes it is costing me more in the long run, but when I bought season one I wasn’t sure I wanted the rest of the other series and spending £3.99 on something you don’t want is much better value than spending £11.17 on it. Yes it will cost me more in the long run, but I quite like how I can choose how much to spend.

I will also say how much I prefer streaming content from the iMac then fiddling around with DVDs, probably me just getting lazy!

Playing with the Apple TV

I spent a bit of time this evening trying out more of the different functions of my Apple TV. I have been using it more recently for streaming video from my iMac to my TV. Tonight though I wanted to see what else it was capable of. One thing the Apple TV will do is allow you to play video (and audio) podcasts to your TV.  I tried a couple of the (high quality) MacBreak Weekly podcasts and was quite impressed by how they looked on my TV. Not sure though if I would ever actually watch a whole episode of MacBreak Weekly on the TV, at this time I prefer to listen to it in my car. Though I am sure there are people out there who would watch it.

Like a lot of these devices, the Apple TV, allows you to watch YouTube on your TV, and though quite an easy interface, entering text on the Apple TV is nigh on impossible to do easily. The Apple Remote has very few buttons and makes the PlayStation text entry simple and effective! However all is not lost, Apple’s free Remote App for the iPad (and iPhone) allows you to use that to control the Apple TV. On the iPad this makes it much easier to enter text, such as names and search terms for YouTube.

I used this way to enter text to add my Flickr account to the Apple TV. Interestingly I had to my Flickr name, not my account name. I quite liked how I could show my Flickr images on the TV. This is how I show photographs quite a bit now, since I went digital, I certainly don’t print out as many prints as I should and like.

Overall there are many features of the Apple TV I like, the interface is quite usable and certainly much better than some other similar devices I have used. It is though not perfect, I would like to be able to use it to access BBC iPlayer, 4OD and other video on demand services and not just film rentals from iTunes.

Updated the Apple TV

I have updated my Apple TV to 4.1.

I’ve not really noticed any different as I haven’t been using it much before I updated.

Having used it a little more recently I have found that it is much faster than Front Row on my Mac mini for moving between media from the iMac downstairs. As a lot of my media is in standard definition the 720p resolution hasn’t been much of a problem. Also all my iTunes HD content is 720p so the fact that it can’t play 1080p content at 1080p is at this time not so much of a problem. I wonder for the future whether this would be a software upgrade or (more likely) Apple will release a new model of the Apple TV.

It’s a pity that BBC iPlayer and other similar services aren’t available on the Apple TV, I personally would like to see 4OD on the Apple TV.

So will we see Apps for the Apple TV in the future, one can hope.