Friday, October 1, 2010

One website takes a screwdriver to Apple's latest gadget and finds a chunk of storage.

Posted by Kim Peterson on Thursday, September 30, 2010 4:35 PM
Credit: Apple CEO Steve Jobs displays the new AppleTV at news conference in San Francisco, Wednesday, Sept. 1, 2010  (© Paul Sakuma/AP)
One of the most notable features in Apple's (AAPL) new Apple TV device is the storage -- or, more specifically, the lack of storage. That's one reason the device, which brings online video to your television, is so tiny and affordable.

The previous Apple TV had a 160GB hard drive, but Apple now wants people to rent movies and TV shows instead of buying them, thus eliminating the need for storage.

Or so we thought. The tech website iFixit got hold of the new gadget and took it apart -- only to find 8 gigabytes of storage space included.

Why would the we-don't-need-no-stinkin'-storage Apple TV have an 8GB Flash chip? The iFixit guys think it's to cache TV shows while they're being streamed. A perfectly reasonable explanation, but you don't need 8GB for that.

What else is the mystery storage for?
The Wall Street Journal speculates that when you combine that storage with the Apple TV's operating system, you open the door for future applications.

Perhaps Apple is planning an App Store for Apple TV? The company has given no hint of this, of course. Even if that doesn't happen, all of the ingredients are there for hackers to jump in with their own programs.

One thing is clear: Putting that much storage on the device shows that Apple has some bigger plans for Apple TV.

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