Friday, June 8th, 2012
I think it’d be cool if Apple TV apps, instead of running on the Apple TV, “streamed” off your phone with AirPlay.
The current situation is that iOS apps can AirPlay to an Apple TV. This essentially gives you a second UIWindow on the Apple TV you can put whatever content in — slideshow, movie, etc.
This is almost all of the way there — here’s what I think Apple could add:
- Set of UI classes to make developing an Apple TV–native interface easy
- Allow apps to receive events from the remote
- Allow apps to be started from the Apple TV
That last one is key. You sit down in front of your TV and “channels” that represent the AirPlay-enabled apps you have on your phone appear. You select one with the remote and the app launches on your phone (silently) and now you’re streaming content to the Apple TV.
There are certainly problems and complications with this approach. But it could be an interesting way to keep the Apple TV cheap and affordable while also allowing the long tail network effects of the App Store to get a beachhead on the Apple TV.