There are two ways to connect the AppleTv onto your network. The first way is the old standard Ethernet RJ-45. The second way is with WiFi standards (b/g/n). If you connect with WiFi it is recommended two things: (1) Use “802.11N” for speed and (2) As with all WiFi connections make sure it is Security Encripted with at least using the “WPA” standard.
The remote that comes with the AppleTv is very simple and easy to to use. The unit costs comparable with the compatition but unlike the other video playback devices on the market the AppleTv should come with cheap HDMI and Ethernet cables since you can only use HDMI for playback and Ethernet is a lot easier to setup then WiFi.
After everything is connected and powered Setup is very easy and fast right out of the box. Without any login or credit card information you can start watching all the free video right away. After adding you local computer information (iTunes) you can start watching video that is setup on your computer through iTunes. Netflex was just as easy, but remember netflix is not stored locally but streamed online.
When streaming online audio/video content over the Internet be sure your Internet bandwidth is sufficient otherwise you might experience buffering or choppy audio/video. Video playback is 720p and not 1080p. The hardware can handle 1080p so after the next software upgrade we might see the higher video playback. Also with the next series of upgrades for all Apple IOS devices (iPad, iPhone, iTouch and AppleTv) the AppleTv will be fully intergraded with one another. This explains that you can be watching a video on one device and transfer it over to another device by pushing a button on the first device (through a system called AirPlay).
Right now the only intergration between IOS devices is a Free App “Remote” for iPhone/iPad works perfect with appletv when the IOS is on the same class “C” network. This free App replaces the hardware remote and adds a few more features to play with. Please note that the new software upgrades we not available at the time of this review.
When playing back through Apple iTunes online (streaming) you can buy movies and now rent them. Depending on where you are, your content will differ (Canada cannot play USA tv shows unless they play in Canada). Since there is No Internal Harddrive installed it is no surprise that the AppleTv remained cool after 6 days on non-stop video playback.
If you follow all the tech news regarding this device you will also know at time of the realise of the AppleTv there was a Jailbreak fix for the device which would allow apps to be installed into the AppleTv. Since we did not install the Jailbreak fix for the AppleTv we couldn’t comment on the performance of the Jailbreaked device.
Recomendations for people who want to get an AppleTv: (1) Make sure you have a HDTV that supports HDMI (not anything else); (2) An iTunes account with a credit card or iTunes credit; (3) Relax and enjoy your new toy !
In conclusion: the AppleTv is a nice new device from Apple that has a reasonable cost and excellent steaming playback.