Apple has sent out invitation to an event on September 9th where rummors say they’ll finally be introducing their next generation Apple TV. Sources tell 9to5Mac that the new Apple TV will be either $149 or $199, about twice the cost of the current $69 model, and will be available in October. Those sources say the new device will include Siri support, a new touchpad remote with gesture support for gaming, and finally a real app store. Apple’s streaming TV service, which they’ve been having trouble locking down deals for, won’t be announced next month, but is said to be one of the few new features coming to the existing Apple TV. The current Apple TV will reportedly remain in production as the entry level model for the new streaming service, but will not receive app store or Siri support.
If the rumored pricing is correct, it’s a stark reminder that, unlike Amazon, Apple is primarily a hardware company that needs to profit from the sale of their devices. Amazon can sell devices like the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick at cost because they expect to profit from services revolving around Prime membership. At possibly twice the cost of the Fire TV and five times the cost of the Fire TV Stick, the new Apple TV is priced to be profitable for Apple at the time of purchase, with profit from the sale of services being secondary. Would you pay twice as much for a Fire TV if it meant it’d have a less Amazon focused interface? Let me know in the comments.
There were a total of 34 new apps and games released for the Fire TV and Fire TV Stick this week. Most notable is Total Commander the first free file browser with sideloading capabilities to make it into the Fire TV appstore. With Total Commander, you can now sideload any app using just a thumb drive on the Fire TV. There’s no need to connect to the Fire TV with a PC. On the game front, we saw the release of R-Type and R-Type II, a couple great classic space shooter games. There was also the release of The Quiet Collection which combines 4 fun games into one discounted app. In the entertainment category, several popular YouTube channels released dedicated Fire TV apps for you to checkout. Read on for the full list of new apps and games. Read more ›
Four Little Knights, a side scrolling platformer with cooperative multiplayer, has just gone Free. This is only the second time this game has ever been offered for free. You can play the game alone, or with up to 4 others simultaneously. It works with either game controllers or remotes, and is compatible with either the Fire TV or Fire TV Stick.
The Amazon Fire TV Stick has just gone on sale for $34 at Amazon, Best Buy, Staples, B&H, Sears, and K-Mart. Apart from the 1 hour sale on Prime Day and the 1 day sale earlier this month for around $24, this is the second lowest price the Fire TV Stick has ever been. This sale is expected to last all week through September 5th.
Last week I wrote about how Minecraft was available with a 175 Amazon coin reward. Well just this morning, that reward was increased to 210 Amazon coins, which essentially brings the game down to $4.89. That’s the cheapest the game has been in a long time. Being the most popular game in the Amazon appstore, it’s very rare that Minecraft is ever discounted. So if you’ve been thinking of buying it, now is the best time. If you bought it last week, you can easily start a chat with Amazon customer service and be credited the 35 coin difference in todays price versus last week’s price.
If you missed yesterday’s live stream, here’s the latest AFTVnewscast episode. Thanks to everyone who viewed live and who participated by asking questions. Let me know in the comments what you think of the episode and if you have any suggestions on how to make it better.
I’ll be live streaming another episode of the AFTVnewscast tomorrow at 1:30pm PT. Post your questions or topics in the comments below for me to answer and discuss during the episode. Anything goes, whether it’s about the Fire TV, AFTVnews, or tech in general. Even if you can’t watch live, ask your question now and catch the episode on YouTube later.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Amazon has laid off “dozens” of engineers at its hardware development office, Lab126, in Silicon Valley. Along with the layoffs is a broader reassessment of current projects, with some being slowed down and others being stopped all together. Rest assured that there is no mention or indication that the Fire TV is one of the affected projects. Read more ›