Apple TV Rentals “Within Two Weeks”

If Steve Jobs’ promise of a new direct-download rental service prompted you to buy an Apple TV, you may be wondering why, after plugging it in, there aren’t any rentals available yet. That’s because the Apple TV firmware update has yet to be released, but it will be, soon, we promise — or so says the latest press release from Cupertino, Calif..

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The firmware upgrade will be a free download, and will work on any Apple TV — even the one your sister bought last year, before the price cut. Otherwise, the details haven’t changed since the announcement. Though the dollar premium for HD rentals reminded me that since Apple TV’s hardware specs haven’t changed, bitrates are still limited to 5Mbps, whereas CableLabs suggests at least 15Mbps for cable VOD rental offerings.

For a product that we here at NewTeeVee really want to be excited about, this software update delay is just another in a long line of disappointments. I certainly wouldn’t recommend it to my parents, who just picked up a new plasma.

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