At long last we're proud to announce the release of the first beta version of aTV Flash (black) for the new AppleTV. This version features a number of exciting features, with many more to come. It took a bit longer to complete than anticipated, but it's a great start to what we hope will be a powerful software suite for the new black AppleTV.

During the beta phase we will be working to improve current features and add new ones, so we would appreciate any feedback you may have. More info on how to submit feedback can be seen near the end of the post.

Read on for more details on what's included and how to get the beta.

Compatibility

The first version of aTV Flash (black) is compatible with the 4.0 AppleTV software only. The new 4.1 software requires a few adjustments but we plan to have compatible version available soon.

Update: Currently aTV Flash (black) is for Mac only. We plan to have a Windows compatible version within the next few days.

Update #2: The Windows version of aTV Flash (black) is now available.

Pricing

aTV Flash (black) will be available at the discounted discounted price of $19.95 during the beta (pre-order) phase. Once the final version is ready for release the price will return to the normal level of $29.95. The original aTV Flash is also being reduced to $39.95.

What's in the beta?

  • Surf the Web - Experience the web in all its glory and stream HTML5 video from many popular sites (note: not all HTML5 sites supported yet).
  • Discover New Music - Find new artists you'll love by accessing Last.fm radio stations, artist bios and slideshows.
  • Plex Client - Stream media from Plex Server running on your Mac. (big thanks to quiqueck for putting this together)
  • Info on Demand - Keep track of current weather and news feeds on your AppleTV.
  • One-click Updates - Install, remove or update plugins in a snap through the native AppleTV interface.

What's coming soon?

  • Go Beyond iTunes - Enable playback of additional media formats.
  • Access Media Anywhere - Stream media from most NAS devices.
  • Much, much more...

How do I get it?

  • Current Users - aTV Flash (black) is available as a free upgrade. After logging into your account you will have an extra download link for aTV Flash (black). Your normal aTV Flash license and download links will remain unchanged. Additionally any available renewal specials can also be found in your account.
  • New Users - aTV Flash (black) is available for pre-order at a discounted price of $19.95. All pre-orders get instant access to the beta.
  • Beta Signups - Those that signed up for the beta will be receiving information on how to download and install the beta via email. We're working hard to get this done ASAP so please be patient.

Help us improve

Please keep in mind this is beta software, and some features may will not be 100% complete. We're committed to providing the best software possible and your feedback helps us greatly in achieving this goal. If you have an idea on how we can improve or have found something that's not quite right please tell us.

Comments are welcome below. Enjoy. Smile

Comments

Submitted by lprunk on December 1, 2010 - 4:34pm

@mikeymike The way to do that is to setup a VPN connection to an USA server(which the iphone, ipad and mac already have the option to do so on the network preferences, but the Apple TV doesn't), you can setup this on your wifi or share a connection from a mac and so on, but you will need to subscribe to a VPN server first. But keep in mind that using some services, like Netflix or Hulu, using VPN outside of US can be against their Terms of Use.

@FireCore I know I could setup a VPN network and connect the Apple TV to it, but couldn't you guys make some kind of preference pane on the Apple TV menu to configure a VPN connection? Just like the iPhone and the iPad do? That would be awesome!

And by the way, just bought the pre-order! Nice work!

Submitted by jhuckle@simoret... on December 1, 2010 - 4:35pm

Great news!  

Submitted by jc.02200 on December 1, 2010 - 4:49pm

I agree with this comment and so disappointed after paying that it is already redundant until jailbreak and updated version is available.

Submitted by mattles on December 1, 2010 - 4:57pm

I bought the $40 version on Cyber Monday ($10 off) and now a $20 version is released? I think I have purchased the wrong version! Any chance I can get an exchange and change?

Submitted by svantet.49614 on December 1, 2010 - 5:14pm

Hi, just installed following your guides, everything seem to be working fine! Great guide and installer.

Everything is working fine, great beta!

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:18pm

Sure - if you don't have a 1st gen AppleTV shoot us an email and we'll figure something out.

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:18pm

Glad to hear it! Much more to come... Smile

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:20pm

It's hard to say at this point - though I think it's been the #1 requested feature.

Submitted by PaytonMAC on December 1, 2010 - 5:20pm

I just can't get pass "Searching for devices"!!! Everything else prior to this step workd fine! Any suggestion please?

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:22pm

By purchasing before today you will actually have access to both the 1st and 2nd gen versions - if you only have a 2nd gen shoot us an email and we can get you account adjusted.

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:23pm

Right now aTV Flash (black) is dependent on a jailbreak - this may change in the future.

Submitted by goncalocruzeiro on December 1, 2010 - 5:23pm

hello, I'm using the apple tv in Portugal do all the spaces to sync itunes with apple tv .... 1_4.1 custom restore and it gives me an installation error says "apple tv. This device is not is Eligible requested the build "

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:26pm

Yes - when available you'll see an extra link for the Windows version in your account. We're hoping to roll this out within the next week.

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 5:27pm

Unfortunately once you're running a later version it's not possible to downgrade - sorry. Frown

Submitted by PaytonMAC on December 1, 2010 - 5:32pm

Now I'm at "Transfering Files", but asking to Specify a password! It doesn't matter what I type or blank by clicking on Transfer Files or Continue, the screen remain same & nothing happens? What am I doing wrong?

Submitted by PaytonMAC on December 1, 2010 - 5:41pm

James, I'm hoping if you have any suggestion with my Passoword ssue at Transfering Files step please? It doesn't like blak or any word for the password & I can't get pass from this step! Any suggestion please?

 

Submitted by mattles on December 1, 2010 - 5:45pm

You are a true blue legend!

Email is sent.

 

Submitted by PaytonMAC on December 1, 2010 - 6:00pm

I'm stck at the same step with Password! apline, or anything else is not working! Any suggestion please?

Submitted by Anon on December 1, 2010 - 6:08pm

You should clearly state on your site the following :

1. If you have updated your ATV 2 to the latest firmware you will NOT be able to jailbreak and install this software ( YET)
2. ONLY if you have already jailbroken your ATV2 previously, and it is currently jailbroken, (or you have saved your SHSH blobs) will you be able to install this software.

NOWHERE did you state this and lots of people (including myself) have now paid for software and are unable to install it until a jailbreak is released.

SHAME ON YOU.

Submitted by james on December 1, 2010 - 6:12pm

Is your AppleTV jailbroken yet? What SW version is your AppleTV running (version can be seen in the Settings --> General --> About menu).

If you're still having trouble I'd recommend checking the forum or sending us an email.

Submitted by Anon on December 1, 2010 - 6:29pm

Thanks. I'm not sure what the point of this would be for me then. Too bad because the interface looks really good.

Submitted by fineinbase4 on December 1, 2010 - 6:37pm

Wife already upgraded our aTV to 4.1.  I'll look forward to 4.1 compatibility!

Submitted by fineinbase4 on December 1, 2010 - 6:38pm

Oops!  You forgot to read the blog post!  They sure did say that.  Perhaps your shame is misdirected?

Submitted by billjaber on December 1, 2010 - 7:27pm

no one has links up for atv 2g iOS 4.0.....

Submitted by Anon on December 1, 2010 - 9:26pm

With the Plex plugin can you fast forward and rewind?

Submitted by maykelll.21061 on December 1, 2010 - 10:06pm

I was n version 4.1 and downloaded back down to 4.0 to try this out so you are able to downgrade if you have saved your shsh and you start the tiny umbrella server before you start itunes. Then restore to stock 4.0 firmware not the custom restore one from pawnage tool. After you have restored to the stock 4.0 then you can jailbreak it with pwnage tool. 

Submitted by maykelll.21061 on December 1, 2010 - 10:07pm

For all those that updated to 4.1 you can downgrade. I was n version 4.1 and downloaded back down to 4.0 to try this out so you are able to downgrade if you have saved your shsh and you start the tiny umbrella server before you start itunes. Then restore to stock 4.0 firmware not the custom restore one from pawnage tool. After you have restored to the stock 4.0 then you can jailbreak it with pwnage tool. 

Submitted by willem.foto@gma... on December 1, 2010 - 10:32pm

Great work guys! I'll sit down and wait for the coming jealbreak of 4.1....

 

Frown

 

When is that expected?

Submitted by Anon on December 1, 2010 - 10:32pm

I think you are right
They don't clearly state that this is not working for 4.1

SHAME ON FIRE CORE

Submitted by Anon on December 1, 2010 - 11:44pm

Having a hard time figuring this all out. But will aTV Flash black let me view the video streams of websites like Hulu, CSPAN, ESPN3, CBS Sports (Silverlight) etc.? If not, why and/or will it ever?

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 12:36am

When can we expect the compability with the 4.1 firmware?
Yesterday I almost bought the beta but after reading the small letter I realised I couldnt use this software

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 1:13am

Did I see it correctly that MKV support was mentioned, but has been removed now?
Can you tell my anything about MKV support, and how it performs currently?

Submitted by bernhardh.27005 on December 2, 2010 - 1:22am

You say, only on iOS 4.0, but on the support page you are already show how to jailbreak the 4.1 !?!?

And what MAC OS X do i need to install the .dmg file ? My iBook G4 has 10.3.9 and cant install the Files on my AppleTV2G.

It shows the installtion progress, all running well, but nothing going to install on the AppleTV.

Any Ideas ??

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 2:07am

The official firmware can be downloaded from the Apple's server:
http://appldnld.apple.com/AppleTV/061-8940.20100926.Tvtnz/AppleTV2,1_4.1...

NOTE: There is minor controversy with version numbers, this 4.1 firmware file is actually 4.0. Apple for some reason did a mess.

I would recommend saving SHSH blobs also using Umbrella:
http://tinyurl.com/2un6xk2

Submitted by catj.36136 on December 2, 2010 - 2:09am

this new ATV flash black is a joke,lots of people already have 4.2 running on the ATV2 because we all waited for it with the Airplay,and i can watch NETFLIX and all html5 videos on my ipad or iphone stream it directly to my ATV2,so what is the point of me downloading ATV FLASH BLACK?and PLEX btw is not a most have,i already can stream all my content from my mac to my ATV2 with Airplay,and Last fm? pleasee,this beta is has exciting to offer me now that i don't already have STEP YOUR GAME UP FIRE CORE

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 2:38am

XBMC?

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 3:08am

Cut the guys some slack they have put a lot of time and effort to get this were it is now they have gone further than any other dev groups to get to this stage !!!

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 3:14am

Pour l'instant cette beta n'apporte pas grand chose de plus que ce que propose l'Apple TV. Donc pourquoi payer pour avoir la même chose ???
J'attendrai XBMC.

Submitted by catj.36136 on December 2, 2010 - 3:27am

im not sayin they not doing a good job,they did perfect with the old ATV,and they showed us a demo with the beta on 4.2,so how come we can't install it on 4.2? its a beta we dont care if it works good or not but lets get the chance to try it,thats y its called a beta 

Submitted by jonasgr on December 2, 2010 - 6:05am

Where did you see that MKV was mentioned/removed att all?
MKV for me is the buying criteria. The moment I can play remote MKVs on ATV2 I would gladely pay twice the money for a Flash black.

Submitted by GusRocket on December 2, 2010 - 6:12am

C'est pas la meme chose! Avec cette software vous pouvez visiter quelquer site sur l'internet, vous pouvez ausssi regarder tous le video MKV que vous avez... Et le prix est promotionel!

Submitted by tonyelbatal on December 2, 2010 - 7:05am

FYI, you cannot stream Netflix from iPad/iPhone to your AppleTV using Airplay, even with all the released Cydia packages. If there's another alternative that makes this possible, pls let me know. Safari Airplay works thought with those packages (but you cannot open Netflix in Safari, it will redirect to the app when you want to actually play the movie).

Submitted by james on December 2, 2010 - 7:59am

We're working to enable support for additional media types, but don't yet have a demo of this in action. Sorry.

Submitted by james on December 2, 2010 - 8:03am

This first beta is just one of many and we plan to include support for the new AirPlay enabled AppleTV software in the next beta version.

Submitted by james on December 2, 2010 - 8:04am

Currently there is limited support for streaming HTML5 video - we're working to enable other plugins types and will have more info as things progress.

Submitted by janp.53465 on December 2, 2010 - 9:07am

http://www.dkszone.net/jailbreak-apple-tv-2g-i...

It looks like it's possible to jailbreak 4.1?

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 9:09am

doesn't Plex plugins do that already?

Submitted by catj.36136 on December 2, 2010 - 9:25am

you already have netflix on ATV2 so you dont need Airplay for that

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 9:25am

We want free stuff Frown

Submitted by Anon on December 2, 2010 - 9:54am

What about USB, SSH, and NFS support? Those are the three things holding me back from upgrading.