back to article Apple’s TV platform just became a little more secure (well, the apps at least)

Security for the Internet of Things is largely notable for its absence, so it’s refreshing see Apple developers taking the business of securing apps on Apple’s newly unveiled smart TVs seriously. Application protection and anti-tamper firm Arxan Technologies is working with third-party developers to offer expanded application …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How long before "Smart TV" revert to just TVs?

    Smart TVs don't stay "smart" for long:

    the 2011 range of Samsung 3D Smart TVs and Blueray/cinema boxes (the "D" series) had their support of Amazon Instant (was LoveFilm) dropped in September.

    Amazon offered me an Amazon TV stick at a discount price that was still more expensive than a Chromecast that I already have.

    Maybe it says more about Amazon, but I'm not gambling that my TV will still be usefully smart in a few years...

    In the meantime, I have dropped my support for Amazon Instant...

    1. Len Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: How long before "Smart TV" revert to just TVs?

      Not long. I believe this whole Smart TV fad will take a massive turn within the next year or two. TVs will become dumber, just screens really, and all the intelligence will come from little boxes like ChromeCast, Apple TV, Roku etc.

      This means you can keep your expensive screen for many years while replacing the intelligence by just upgrading that cheap box you hide behind the TV. Those little boxes can be much more flexible, more user friendly and more easily upgradeable than a TV can ever be.

      1. KenBW2

        Re: How long before "Smart TV" revert to just TVs?

        >Those little boxes can be much more flexible, more user friendly and more easily upgradeable than a TV can ever be.

        Implying TV manufacturers don't want you to replace your whole TV

    2. TheVogon Silver badge

      Re: How long before "Smart TV" revert to just TVs?

      Great - what more can hackers ask for than standardised protection - reminds me of Securom, Disklock, etc. I'm sure an automated protection removal app will be out pronto...

  2. Tom Chiverton 1
    Thumb Down

    Nice advert.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What eaxctly defines a Smart TV?

    It appears that finiding anything that isn't labeleld 'Smart' and bigger then 24in in the UK is very, very difficult these days.

    I have a Sony 49in Smart TV. The smart part is a PITA. It refused to follow the setting that says 'Don't turn me off EVER' and every three hours it tries to shut itself down unless I press something on the keypad to proved that there is a human still awake nearby.

    Do I use any of the other features?

    mostly no chance..

    I connected up my FreeSat PVR and that is the only input I use unless the PVR is recording two things and I want to watch something that is on a different channel then I use the TV.

    Other than that, the only time I used something else was when I connected an SD card and viewed some piccies.

    still the Picture quality is great and a big step up from the old LG Set that I had previously. That dies after nigh on 7 years when the PSU went Phut.

    YMMV naturally.

    1. Barry Rueger Silver badge

      Re: What eaxctly defines a Smart TV?

      Agreed. Our Sony "smart" TV is anything but.

      Simply the worst software package imaginable - it can't even handle Netflix reliably.

      Well on it's way to being a dumb terminal with an external box.

      1. cambsukguy

        Re: What eaxctly defines a Smart TV?

        Netflix, luxury. My POS Samsung doesn't even have Netflix. It had Lovefilm at one point but I never used it.

        Don't even use the iPlayer, which did work when I checked it a long time ago. Everything is so slow and useless, unbearably so.

        All the other software is rubbish too, it can take a full 10s for the source select to actually display the sources for instance.

        It does have a nice picture though.

        One 10m HDMI and the TV becomes very smart, as smart as the laptop connected to it anyway.

        And with WiDi HDMI units for £20 or so I wouldn't even need the cable, with the added benefit of my next phone being able to mirror its display on the TV too.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I would have thought that the main corporate motivation for this stuff would be to prevent people reverse-engineering the apps so as to be able to watch stuff on anything other than Apple's anointed boxlet in anywhere other than Apple's approved territories.

  5. chivo243 Silver badge
    Headmaster

    Puleeaase

    Apple TV is not a TV... never has been, never will be. Apple is just using the letters TV which used to mean television, as a means to hang the damn thing off your real television or other capable display...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Puleeaase

      Apple is just using the letters TV which used to mean television

      in the UK we say "telly"

      TV means transvestite

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: Puleeaase

        So Channel 5's website is five Trannies? (five.tv)

        Trannies also mean (for us old farts) Transistor Radios.

        Ain't the English Language was wot is spoke wonderful eh?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Puleeaase

        That's nice for you. Most of the real world uses big people words. Like television, automobile, elevator...

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Puleeaase No, not really...

        TV still means Television and Trannie means transvestite. Who cares what you say "there".

        It's all relative to where one LIVES and this is a very big world, or are you just being a "xenophobe" or perhaps parochial.

      4. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
        Childcatcher

        Re: Puleeaase

        in the UK... TV means transvestite

        Sweet!

  6. Michael B.

    Security for them, not us

    How naive of me to think that this was security for the user's benefit. The company's MO is in content protection and anti-tampering which is just security for Apple and the content it sells..

  7. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Good

    So 64% will still be plain old TVs.

    1. Richard Jones 1

      Re: Good

      And of the remaining 36% what percentage will have reverted to dumb or normal within 12~18 months of purchase anyway? I'd give it about 90% of them. So on balance about 96% will still probably function as Televisions with an external box that does not do anything very smart anyway. I just do not see me ever wanting a box marked apple, unless it is filled with tasty fruit.

  8. DrXym Silver badge

    And in other news

    By 2020, 36 per cent of all TV buyers will be dumb.

    An expensive "smart" TV becomes a bitrotten, obsolete TV in a very short period of time. And while it's being smart I'm sure it's also gathering usage data and spamming you with targeted ads.

  9. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    While I ended up with a 'smart' TV recently, as the only thing that was both in the price range and had a decent picture in the size I wanted, the network attachment has never been connected.

    The PVR to which it is attached has a similar network attachment, but at least that one lasted long enough to see whether iPlayer worked before it was removed.

    Annoyingly both the screen and the PVR seem to think that there is no-one in the world who might watch a single channel for over three hours without using the remote. I have turned it off on the screen but haven't yet found the equivalent setting for the PVR - a task for when I am bored sometime.

  10. DougS Silver badge

    This is a different meaning of security

    These protections are meant to protect the MPAA's valuable content from being lifted by hackers (which is why Netflix and Amazon are working with this company on other platforms to protect their apps)

    This is probably a contractual requirement to get the permission to stream their stuff, especially the 4K stuff that will protected by HDCP 2.2 and will never allow any analog output.

    1. Richard Jones 1
      WTF?

      Re: This is a different meaning of security

      Possibly a bit of a shame really and why my very analogue eyes and ears are unlikely to be troubled by such 'stuff and nonsense'.

    2. TheVogon Silver badge

      Re: This is a different meaning of security

      "These protections are meant to protect the MPAA's valuable content from being lifted by hackers"

      That worked well for BluRay....

      "4K stuff that will protected by HDCP 2.2"

      It's already been broken / bypassed anyway: http://www.myce.com/news/is-the-hdcp-2-2-copy-protection-broken-by-movie-pirates-77142/

      1. DougS Silver badge

        @TheVogon

        Thanks for the link, I hadn't heard about this. Sounds like it isn't confirmed yet (maybe they got it some other way) but I figured it wouldn't last forever.

        Also interesting the visual that shows them allowing a way for 4K to be downgraded to HD and output using HDCP 1.x. I haven't seen any devices that do this yet so I wondering if maybe it was a contractual thing for 4K that it could never be downconverted, glad to see that is apparently not the case.

  11. Kbanwait

    what we need

    This is exactly what the IOT needs to be - secure. It'll bite us in the a** when things are left insecure when CCTV is used around our own properties.

    I'd wait setting up my smart home until security is taken seriously. These back-doorsin to IOT is horrible and leaves people wide open with the fake promise of security on a sticky label on the product box.

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