Sony Xperia Z3 Review
Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
Karbonn Sparkle V (Android One)
Micromax Canvas A1 (Android One)
Xiaomi Redmi 1S
Asus Zenfone 6
Asus Zenfone 5
HTC One (M8)
First Impressions: Blackberry Passport
Samsung Galaxy Alpha: First impressions of Samsung's premium mini phone
A date with the Oculus Rift
Windows 9: The bloodiest war for your PC is coming soon
Hot Shots: A Windows game that warps conventional touch based gaming
How tech is taking football to the next level
Classic FPS games are a dying breed
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Carmick Shift: Can John Carmack and Oculus Rift change the world?
Xolo launches the Q2100 with integrated fingerprint sensor
Samsung India launches Galaxy Grand Prime to compete with the Moto G
YotaPhone dual-screen smartphone spotted on Flipkart
Lumia 930, 830 and 730 WP 8.1-based phones launched in India
Broadband adoption rate improves in India: Akamai report
Moto G 2nd gen launched, available from midnight at Rs. 12,999
Xiaomi goes for the kill, prices Redmi 1S at Rs. 5,999 in India
Xiaomi lists Mi3 cases and power-banks on Flipkart, offers 10,400 mAh powerbank for Rs. 999
Moto G2 expected to be announced on 10 September
Motorola Moto X (Gen 2) smartphone, Moto 360 smartwatch announced for India
Intex Aqua Star Power
Intex Aqua Star HD
Intex Aqua Star
Idea Magna L
Case Study: Optimizing Cyberlink PowerDVD to improve battery life on Intel devices
How to use Parallel Programming with C#
Create a music App with touch, stylus & keyboard control for Windows 8 tablets
How to optimize multimedia & augmented reality Android apps for Intel platform
How to use Intel INDE Media Pack for Android to add video capturing capability for Unity Apps
How to Develop an Intelligent Autonomous Drone using an Android Smartphone
How to get started with OpenCL on Android OS
How to use Intel Cilk Plus to speed up your Android application
How to choose the right engine for your x86-based Android game
How to create sample codes for Video 3D on Android
Nokia Lumia 930 - First Impressions
Nokia Lumia 830 - First Impressions
Nokia Lumia 730 - First Impressions
Microsoft jumps to Windows 10 and rolls back to Windows 7 features
First look: Lenovo Vibe Z2 Pro
Hands On: Nokia Lumia 930
Hands On: Nokia Lumia 730
Hands On: Nokia Lumia 830
Home entertainment projectors to buy
With Apple TV finally landing up in India, the obvious question is, should you buy it?
The Apple TV has finally landed on the shores of our wonderful country and no doubt, elitists and pseudo-snobs are probably planning to line-up outside Apple retail stores to get themselves a unit (or two, or more). However, if you’re a small part of an even smaller community that prefers to make well thought-through purchase decisions, then you’re probably wondering whether you should get the new Apple TV or not. Well, we’re not going to tell you whether to shell out your Gandhi or not, but what we are going to do is break down this new product’s efficacy for your living room.
So I have had the opportunity to run an Apple TV in my dorm room when I was a student living in the US. It was a nice break from the laptop screen (and the rigmarole) of having to download or stream my favourite shows onto my laptop. All I needed was an Ethernet cable and a subscription and I could watch all my favourite shows on my big screen, thanks to the tie-up apple has with Hulu Plus and Netflix.
Between these two giants, there really was no need for a third, but every time I felt the need for some laughs and giggles, I could easily fire up YouTube as well. The idea that the movies, shows and viral videos I watched on my tiny 13 inch screen could now be enjoyed on a large 41-inch LED all thanks to this little box was absolutely amazing. Of course it was a little frustrating that it didn’t do much for my DVD collection or the random rips I had lying in my external hard drive. Yet, Netflix’s unmatched movie library (and amazingly affordable subscription) made me not miss out on my discs and rips.
In India, the story is completely different. We don’t have Netflix here and while Hulu refuses to stream anything to an India IP, Hulu Plus is just out of the question. Apple TV in India does come with YouTube and Vimeo partnership, but chances that you’ll find the latest episode of Grey’s Anatomy on either of these services is most unlikely. If you love your typical Hindi soaps on the popular TV channels, then once again, you’re sh*t out of luck. Currently, Apple TV can only stream content from YouTube, Vimeo, MLB Live Sports and WSJ News in India and that hardly counts as an entertainment package.
If there is anything I have realized from streaming content, it’s that if you want the best quality (1080p), then you better be willing to put a serious load on your bandwidth. I have often noticed that when I try streaming a full 1080p movie, there are times when my bandwidth chokes up and the movie stops in order to buffer. This is despite having my Xbox 360 running the internet off an Ethernet cable.
The problem here isn’t with the Apple TV or the Xbox 360, but with the existing internet infrastructure we have. Not everyone has an 8Mbps lines installed in their homes and even if they do, the bandwidth caps are hardly enough to support streaming for those who consume content quite heavily. Even if you do manage to get your daily dose of movies (which one might have purchased from the iTunes Store), exhausting your data cap would result in frustratingly slow internet.
Great if You’re an Existing Apple User
An Apple TV in your living room makes sense if you’re already tied into the Apple ecosystem, or at least that is the case in India. The only way to get compatible content for the Apple TV is from the iTunes Store, and the only reason to have an iTunes Store account is if you already own a Mac, or an iPhone or an iPod Touch. What if you own neither? Let’s for a moment only consider the iTunes store as the source of content, in which case you will have to get iTunes and an Apple ID just to be able to get content streaming to a device that you already had to shell out a lot of money for. The Apple TV offers way too little in order and therefore isn’t the recommended “first Apple device” that one should own.
A good alternative to the Apple TV would be the Western Digital TV Live Media Player or a similar device which not only offer compatibility with a variety of formats, but also USB support so that you can connect your external hard drive to the box. Would you want to own a device that can only play files of one specific format, that have been purchased from one specific store? Sounds quite stifling, unless you’re already caught up in the ecosystem. The Apple TV also only supports HDMI Out, which means that anyone who uses a component input-based television is out of luck with the Apple TV.
Just for disclosure, I ditched my Apple TV unit in favour of an Xbox 360 simply because I can do a lot more with it. Using my PC, I can stream any and all media files to the Xbox, and as for purchased content, the Xbox 360 has the same limitations as the Apple TV. No access to Hulu Plus or HBO or Netflix, but my YouTube app runs without a single moment of buffering.