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back to article Google menaces Apple's 3-year-old toddler with its cheap stream tech

For years in PCs, Apple was the R&D lab for the entire industry, and Microsoft would roll out similar operating system features long after Apple users had them as standard. As a result, Microsoft users would get a feature late. It would also usually be offered in a less adventurous manner – and while sometimes it was weaker than …

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Pull the other one.

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Anonymous Coward

> For years in PCs, Apple was the R&D lab for the entire industry, and Microsoft would roll out similar operating system features long after Apple users had them as standard.

Fanboy alert. Apple and Microsoft both borrow from each other, and that's a good thing. Although Apple does tend to be more stuck in their ways, sometimes refusing to borrow good ideas from Microsoft, such as window maximization, aero snap, being very late to the party even allowing you to resize windows in a sane manner.

And if you were really paying attention, you would know that most of the innovation is coming from the Linux/BSD communities anyway, it's just that Apple love taking credit for "inventing" other people's inventions.

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So much wrong in the first few sentences! Can someone send the reporter back to school please? Needs to learn the history of tablets, phones, mp3 players and GUI interfaces. Also needs to use a Gingerbread Android device and see where Apple gets its ideas from.

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Meh

"take your phone to your friend’s house, you can play your games"

No you can't (unless they are web-based)

AFAIK - Content from YouTube, Netfix, Google Play, and anything that will display in a Chrome browser window.

No Angry Birds, Doodle Jump etc.

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Anonymous Coward

Indeed.

For every "Chromecast copied AppleTV", I can name 5 features Apple stole from Google.

This is just lame ass hurt Apple fanboy writings...

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Research...

Apple offered a preview of the device in September 2006[1]

So thats Google at the same point 7 years later than Apple.

With improvements in tech, you'd expect them to be able to produce something that kicks the @rse out of the 7year old Apple product. And even still be better than the 3year old product.

Frankly, it's a good thing. It's competition, which means innovation in price and features.

The current AppleTV is good, but could be better. So hopefully this might inspire Apple to rev the hardware, or drop the price, or both. And then Google need to do the same to compete.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_TV

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WTF?

Re: Research...

Can someone tell me why this post attracted downvotes ? Do people not want competition ?

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Re: Research...

Probably because he mentioned Apple in positive context, which is against site rules.

(awaiting downvotes) :p

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Re: Research...

Re-write to please the downvotes.

Apple sucks. Their stuff is ancient and they must have copied it from google all those years ago anyway.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Research...

Apple's device is stand alone and much the better for it. Yes it's larger and more expensive but it's not 'expensive' and does so much more so much better.

Get 'apps' on the Apple TV and it's a killer device.

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Re: Research...

But they're not at the same point, it's cheaper and more cross-platform than even the latest Apple TV. If you're going to criticise Google for not getting it to us sooner, you might as well criticise Apple for not being better in that 7 years, or indeed anyone else (there are loads of people making TV streaming boxes, not just Apple, and most of them work with other manufacturer's products - not sure why Apple is getting all the mention, when their box was as much a fail as any other TV set-top box).

And to borrow an expression, "It doesn't matter if they weren't first, Google'll be the first to popularise it".

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Re: Research...

It doesn't even do applications? Yet another way their offering doesn't even compete with the various smart TV functionality already out there as standard.

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Linux

Re: Research...

> Apple's device is stand alone and much the better for it

Every time someone says that the AppleTV is artificially crippled and lame, some fanboy chimes in and says "just use AirPlay".

This Google product is just that concept take to it's logical extreme. Treat the AppleTV as nothing more than a wireless video transfer dongle and cut the price by 1/3rd.

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Re: Research...

This isn't Chromecast vs AppleTV it's Chromecast vs AirPlay. Sure AppleTV may be 7 years old as you say but AirPlay has only been around since 2010. I suppose it is possible, albeit implausible, that Apple actually had AirPlay in the AppleTV and didn't mention it for the first four years.

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Facepalm

Re: Research...

Downvotes because:

It doesn't kick Chromecast's ass.

It's not cross-platform.

Microsoft beat it by 5 years with media Center. In the context of the article that's a huge fail!

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Re: Research...

@Mark.

It ONLY does applications!

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Re: Research...

About 4 years after MythTV and 8 after VideoLAN

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Yes but can we hack it and install XBMC on it?

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Who knows, but as you can buy a RPi for £25 and install XMBC, why would you?

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Might get my attention more if Netflix in the UK actually had any decent content on it.

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They've pulled the Netflix offer

so that's something you don't have to worry about.

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"...and Google is offering three months of Netflix free with the device."

It stopped that before the weekend.

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Anonymous Coward

If it specifically need Chrome, I'll propably be stuffed

Ever since Google descended into the gutter in their enthusiasm for Chrome and became a malware purveyor, I decided I don't really want that kind of software anywhere near me.

Yes, Chrome is being punted like malware. I have had a couple of instances recently where an application installer decided to take it onto itself to ram Chrome down my throat with the usual scumware approach of having the "yes, I don't care how crap your offering is, install it anyway" box neatly pre-ticked.

Anything (Foxit, are you listening?) that tries to perform an unnecessary, unwanted and totally irrelevant act on my property and is set to do so by default is malware. Pure and simple.

Google used to have a mantra "Do no Evil". Now, putting their name to product being distributed like scumware and their latest trick of screwing around with GMail; launching tabbed inboxes without the common decency of asking first, I suggest the mantra should now read "We're Google. Screw You"

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Re: If it specifically need Chrome, I'll propably be stuffed

I should ask for your money back.

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FAIL

Re: If it specifically need Chrome, I'll propably be stuffed

Foxit did that during a "security patch update" without so much as a "by your leave, guv'ner". Just stuffed chrome browser on my machine.

That is a criminal offence in Australia.

But since when has google or it's evil minions cared about such things.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If it specifically need Chrome, I'll propably be stuffed

Money - no. demographics, search history, advertising clicks and anything else they monetise - yes.

What was your point?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: If it specifically need Chrome, I'll propably be stuffed

It would probably be prudent blame the program itself. Foxit has been at this a while. It briefly changed your default search engine and added a toolbar for 'Ask' without even having a tick box to allow it.

Chrome (Google) pays referral fees and the program makers try to solicit extra fees by hiding the install. But you really have to blame the software company that doesn't make it obvious.

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Anonymous Coward

Paid muppets

What is this muppet on about?

Does he/she/it not know of all the devices that preceded the me-to from the fruit factory? Never heard of DLNA? WDTV? HTPC? Evidently not, since all we get is ill-informed spew from someone who probably hasn't even looked at the SDK page (too hard). Why are thereg bothering with running puff pieces from a know nothing agency ('frontline'?)

Hey, if you want to run apple centric drivel, you could at least get the target right. This is targeted on the postulated 'iTV', by providing TV manufacturers a route to include google's streaming answer - cutting the legs out from apple at the same time as they chat with cable firms.

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what a load of old bollocks

Apple the R&D powerhouse that everyone copied enviously? The first iPhone couldn't even send MMS four fox ache. Someone is on the cool aid.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: what a load of old bollocks

and you couldn't take a screenshot on android till 4.0.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

Screenshots worked fine on my Xperia S when it was on Gingerbread.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

And yet I managed to. I also used to take screenshots on my winmo 5 smartphone several years before the iPhone. My point is that it isn't R&D to take stuff other people already do (eg wifi) and give it a fancy name to convince fapples it's actually novel.

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Stop

Re: what a load of old bollocks

And MMS was so popular wasn't it? It wasn't a core feature and you could do the same thing (for less money) by sending an email.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

"And MMS was so popular wasn't it?"

Dunno about popular, but I'm inclined to think that, being a method of communication, it's a more useful feature for mobile phones than being able to get screenshots.

"It wasn't a core feature and you could do the same thing (for less money) by sending an email."

Provided the sender and recipient both have email addresses. Not everyone does.

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Stop

Re: what a load of old bollocks

Do you see me complaining about Android and Screenshots? The point here is that when a new product comes out it will have gaps in its feature set. Providing those gaps aren't grievous (and if you can work around them) then early adopters generally won't mind.

The lack of MMS was an issue pretty much only to Android fans. They'd scratch about for some unlikely use case and make like it was pretty much the only thing they did with their phone. MMS was expensive and only ever had a limited number of users. As its pretty much impossible to own a smart phone and NOT have an email address then you've suggested a pretty limited example once again.

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WTF?

Re: what a load of old bollocks

And then there's the notification bar...

The author of this article shouldn't say things like "this role has now been taken by Google and Android, and it doesn’t have to look too far from the Apple product line to see its next innovation" without actually checking some facts.

In all honesty, it simply looks like all the big companies are copying each other AND the small innovators.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: what a load of old bollocks

MMS is a little more integral to a phone than a bloody screenshot!

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

"Do you see me complaining about Android and Screenshots?"

It's hard to say, actually. El Reg's very limited threading doesn't actually tell me which post you replied to. Just because you only mentioned MMS and not screengrabs doesn't mean you weren't replying to, say, Bhodi's post defending your beloved phone-maker's inclusion of screen grabbing pointlessness over its lack of MMS. I assumed that was your angle; you're saying it wasn't. <shrugs>

"The lack of MMS was an issue pretty much only to Android fans. They'd scratch about for some unlikely use case and make like it was pretty much the only thing they did with their phone."

Remembering that the initial comment was that the first iPhone lacked MMS. That being in 2007. AFAICR Android was still in development at that point, with the first phone the public could buy being about a year later.

I'm not saying it couldn't have already developed a fan-base by then; it could. I just thought it was pertinent to mention that point.

(For the record, when the first iPhone came out, I was using Windows Mobile devices.)

"MMS was expensive and only ever had a limited number of users. As its pretty much impossible to own a smart phone and NOT have an email address then you've suggested a pretty limited example once again."

Wow. Just wow.

Meanwhile, here in the real world not everyone has smartphones. And in 2007, when the first gen iPhone came out - remembering that the comment that started this discussion was the original iPhone's lack of MMS capability - even less people had smartphones than now.

So it's not a pretty limited example at all - your dismissing it as such is just you either clutching at straws to defend your beloved Apple, or being rather a long way up your own jacksy.

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Stop

Re: what a load of old bollocks

As at least one party here would have to have an iPhone and the other party would need a dumb phone with MMS capability, no internet access and a pressing need to spend £1.50 on an MMS then yes, it's a limited scenario.

For most people the lack of MMS was a non-issue. It was a minor feature that Apple hadn't got around to building in and not worth making a song and dance about.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

Other things the original iphone couldn't do: 3G, apps, copy/paste. All things even older feature phones could do. The funny thing is, people like you at the time were arguing similarly that "But no one wants to do that" - looking back, it seems absurd now.

On PAYG phones back then, sending an MMS could often be cheaper, and also meant the recipient didn't have to pay. On contract, both would be included in the contract.

I'd still use MMS now. It saves you having to worry about if the person is checking email on their phone, something less common then, and even now, I wouldn't assume people check their email as often as text, even if I know they have a smartphone.

(And as for the other comment from someone, that Android was late with some features isn't relevant, as no one would argue that Android was one of the first, or leading smartphones for that time period. When the first Android phones came out, people said it was a good new open platform to move to, but no one claimed it was revolutionary, or any of the absurd hype we got with a 2007 dumb phone that ended up being massively outsold by even just one model of Nokia smartphone.)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: what a load of old bollocks

Mtm (tm)

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

"As at least one party here would have to have an iPhone and the other party would need a dumb phone with MMS capability, no internet access and a pressing need to spend £1.50 on an MMS then yes, it's a limited scenario."

You're desperately trying to make it sound unlikely, but the truth is that MMS was around and in use - fairly widespread if my own experience is anything to go by (I'm not sure if I've ever sent one, by I know I've received plenty over the years).

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Stop

Re: what a load of old bollocks

MMS was around and in use, but in nowhere near the numbers that SMS was. It wasn't something that most users bothered with, partly because of the cost and partly because you needed a camera phone to make use of them (and cameras were't a must-have feature back then). Keep screaming all you like, but MMS wasn't a killer feature that all phones MUST have, the very fact that the IPhone survived proved that.

The original iPhone was an incomplete product, but what it did it did pretty well. It was the first mobile phone I've used with a really good mobile web browser (which was how it was originally planned to run apps lest we forget, it wasn't like Apple forgot about them). It was also the first mobile to put touch together in a way that was natural and fluid to use.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

"MMS was around and in use, but in nowhere near the numbers that SMS was."

Since I never suggested it was used in numbers comparable to SMS, arguing that the numbers aren't comparable is introducing a strawman.

"It wasn't something that most users bothered with, partly because of the cost and partly because you needed a camera phone to make use of them (and cameras were't a must-have feature back then)."

Cameras may not have been a must-have feature, but they were certainly a fairly common feature of phones back then. Many models of phone lacked them, but there were plenty that incorporated them - and that means many users who could use them and who could be inclined to send them to others.

Just because you feel that it wasn't worth bothering with, doesn't mean "most users" felt the same way.

It doesn't seem too unreasonable to guess that the reason you feel this way about MMS is because of your choice of phone.

"Keep screaming all you like, but MMS wasn't a killer feature that all phones MUST have, the very fact that the IPhone survived proved that."

Well, no, actually, it does nothing of the sort. Mainly because nobody said it was a killer feature - that's another strawman - only that it was a fairly obvious feature that the iPhone lacked.

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Stop

Re: what a load of old bollocks

Apparently beating ideas into your skull with a large stick is what is required.

My point was and has always been that most users couldn't give a damn if the iPhone (or any other smart phone of the period) did MMS or not. It wasn't a popular feature. The numbers sent prove that. I owned MMS capable phones before the iPhone (various O2 XDA phones and the LG Viewty to name a few), and never used the feature. Making it out to be a hideous omission is beyond ridiculous. All manufacturers reach a view over which features are required and which they can leave 'till later when designing new devices. The lack of MMS in the iPhone was at best a minor annoyance rather than a fatal flaw, but the fandroid community like to make out that it was a basic feature that every phone should have had. Android also lacked many features when it first shipped, it seems to have survived the experience also.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: what a load of old bollocks

"Apparently beating ideas into your skull with a large stick is what is required."

Wow, someone doesn't agree with you and so they have to have your viewpoint beaten in to them!

It may be hyperbole, but it to feel that someone needs to have *your* ideas beaten in to them is somewhat ridiculous.

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

Airplay isn't widely used. I've sent MMS but never needed to stream anything to Apple hardware.

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Paris Hilton

Re: what a load of old bollocks

I was sending MMS on a Sony T68 back in 2003, I know because I only just sent it off to a charity and had to delete all the pictures my girlfriend had sent me. It also had blue tooth, something that I couldn’t understand why 5 years later wasn’t on an iPhone, “how else am I supposed to send you this Paris Hilton GIF?”

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Trollface

Re: what a load of old bollocks

aha, so you're the one!

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Re: what a load of old bollocks

"Apparently beating ideas into your skull with a large stick is what is required."

The basis for your "ideas" that need to be beaten into my skull seems to be what you do/don't do, what you like/don't like, and so on. That's more than a little bit arrogant.

It might also help if you didn't make questionable comments, or throw straw men into the mix.

Note, for example, how you're now suggesting I am (or, being generous, other contributors are) "making it out to be a hideous omission". I certainly haven't said or implied that; my argument has always been that it's a more useful feature than you are willing to admit (I came in pointing out that it's more useful, and indeed relevant, on a mobile phone than the ability to grab a screenshot).

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