New Apple TV with streamlined interface unveiled, 1080p iTunes Movies now in the cloud

Kicking off the new iPad event, Apple CEO Tim Cook has just announced a new Apple TV, a new Apple TV user interface, new iTunes Movies in the cloud, and most importantly -- full 1080p support.

Looking at the interface,  you can see items are no longer "listed" but rather, laid out in a more icon like way so that items are easily viewed. The information lacking in the announcement here ,though, was any mention of specs for the new Apple TV however, it was noted it will be available as of March 16th while retaining the current Apple TV pricing of $99.

Image: GDGT

Apple Brings 1080p High Definition to New Apple TV

SAN FRANCISCO—March 7, 2012—Apple® today announced the new Apple TV® featuring 1080p programming including iTunes® movies and TV shows, Netflix, Vimeo, photos and more in HD. With iTunes in the Cloud, customers can purchase and play their favorite movies and TV shows from the iTunes Store® and watch them instantly on their HD TV. The new Apple TV features a simpler, refined user interface making it easier than ever to access your purchased movies, TV shows and music with iTunes Match℠ right from iCloud®. With AirPlay®, users can stream or mirror their favorite content from their iPad® or iPhone® 4S to Apple TV.

“People are going to love streaming movies and TV shows in 1080p with the new Apple TV, and photos look beautiful displayed at the maximum resolution of your TV,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Apple TV is easier than ever to use with its new icon-based interface and the ability to access your purchased movies, TV shows and music right from iCloud.”

Apple TV users can choose from an incredible selection of programming including over 15,000 movies and over 90,000 TV episodes on the iTunes Store. Apple TV also offers great content from Netflix’s streaming catalog, live sports from MLB, NBA and NHL as well as Internet content from Vimeo, YouTube and Flickr.*

With iCloud, you can buy movies and TV shows on Apple TV and watch them on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch®, Mac® or PC. iCloud also stores photos and pushes them wirelessly to all your devices including your HD TV via Apple TV. iCloud provides an incredibly easy way to get instant access to all of your content, no matter which device is being used.

iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users can use AirPlay to stream music, photos and videos from their devices directly to their HD TV with Apple TV. iPhone 4S or iPad users can use AirPlay Mirroring to show the screen of their device right on their HD TV, allowing them to stream web pages, spreadsheets or even games.**

Apple TV makes it easy to enjoy iTunes video, music and photo libraries from your computer right on your HD TV—and with iCloud you can instantly enjoy content that was purchased on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch as well. iTunes Match customers can now play their entire music library from iCloud—even songs they’ve imported from CDs. Users can also control Apple TV with their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch using the Remote app, available as a free download on the App Store™ (www.itunes.com/appstore).

Pricing & Availability

Apple TV will be available on Friday, March 16 for a suggested retail price of $99 (US) through the Apple online store, Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers. Apple TV requires iTunes 10.5 or later. Apple TV requires an 802.11g/n Wi-Fi network or Ethernet network, a broadband Internet connection and a HD TV capable of 1080p or 720p and an HDMI cable that is sold separately. iTunes movie and TV show availability varies by country. Second generation Apple TV users can install the new Apple TV user interface via a free software update, available today. Third generation Apple TV hardware is required to play 1080p video.

Content availability varies by country and may require account subscriptions.

AirPlay requires an iOS device running iOS 4.2 or later. AirPlay Mirroring not supported on original iPad.

Chris Parsons

Editor-at-Large at Mobile Nations, gadget junkie, energy drinker, ranter.

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There are 15 comments. Add yours.

Oliver says:

All I care to find out at this point is whether or not it has full support for DTS, DTS-MA HD, and TrueHD audio...? or whether or not those codecs can be supported once it's jailbroken and running XBMC or FireCore...?

ExtraEric says:

Taken from Apple's website:
Audio Formats Supported: HE-AAC (V1), AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3, and 4), Apple Lossless, AIFF, and WAV; Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound pass-through
So looks like they didn't update the "official" audio compatibility :(

dloveprod says:

Nice they are in the cloud, now I can free up space from tv shows and watch them again in the future if I want.

Jonesy27 says:

Will this interface be an update on the current apple tv?

cosby01 says:

Same question here. Except for 1080p processing the interface looks like it could be an OS update vs a brand new purchase.

Nicole says:

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Clayton says:

"Second generation Apple TV users can install the new Apple TV user interface via a free software update, available today. Third generation Apple TV hardware is required to play 1080p video." The last statement in the prees release confirms it. Very happy about this!

iSRS says:

That is the answer to one of my two questions. Perfect. Now the question on what happens to iPhone 4/Apple TV 2 if I buy a 1080p video. Will it play @ 720p or SD??

iowamatt says:

Same question I have. So if I replace all my 720p HD content with 1080p from iTunes does it automatically downscale to 720p or does it just play the SD version? I keep all my movies on my iMac so would the iMac live scale down to 720p? I plan to upgrade to the Apple TV 3 but possibly keep the Apple TV 2 for my daughter and if I upgrade all the content since the Apple TV 2 can't play 1080p would it be stuck with SD version? BTW: Apple allowing you to redownload your HD purchases from them (if available) for free in 1080p:
http://www.theverge.com/2012/3/7/2852583/apple-previously-purchased-itun...

kingweb says:

Is the movies in the cloud available for apple tv 2?

Quick5pnt0 says:

Are they ever going to add a browser to this thing?

Blair Wulkan says:

The BDV-360IS looks very interesting as the HT-IS100 which uses the same speakers has also been very well received. When put together with the BDP-S360, this should be a great seller for Sony, and a must have item for many home cinema fans especially those who like their speakers a little more discrete.

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Deana Vullo says:

Hi there. So I did this and yeah, it works. Just a question. When I save images in my ipod some of them look very blurry. Why is that? Is there any way to fix it and save the pictures in good quality? Thanks.

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