Will Apple’s AirPlay Cause a Rift in the Connected Home Universe?

It appears that AirPlay is more than just a trick feature that can zap video content from your iDevice to the new Apple TV. Apple a has page up showing a list of hardware partners who will support the new spec. so users can select a device that they want their iTunes music to play on wirelessly or via a wired network connection.

The trouble: DLNA has this “Digital Media Controller” functionality built-in to their latest spec. already and it works across any DLNA certified device with controller support — no matter who makes it. To see it action, have a look at the TwonkyBeam implementation.


Why it matters: we really don’t want to go back to the days when multiple companies create standards that only work with certain products and software (in this case, just through iTunes — though, I’m guessing, iDevice support will follow). Universal interoperability guidelines agreed upon by hundreds of member companies is what we get with DLNA and from where I’m standing… fracturing in this respect would not be a good thing to revisit. It will be 2003 all over again with competing technologies battling out.

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Filed in: Industry Buzz, Software, Streaming Media Devices

3 Reactions to “Will Apple’s AirPlay Cause a Rift in the Connected Home Universe?”

  1. Ian Powley says:

    exactly, one of my favorite features of win7 is the “play to” functionality /media rendering aspects in media center and explorer. It works exactly as advertised across all my devices-phone, xbox and dlna tv, I really dont think that apple needed to make a new protocol especially after Jobs' speech on supporting standards etc…

  2. andrewmclaughlin says:

    The one thing I'd really like to see is integration with car headunits. Or a 'line in' adapter that would accept an AirPlay feed. This sort of eliminates the need for a “dock” connector other than to charge.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Fracturing can be good, especially if existing technology is inadequate. This is the case w/ DLNA. I have yet to see a good implementation of it and believe it’s a result of the fundamental technology ruining it. Apple’s attempt may seem suspect but show me a technology that will work better. Yeah it may only work w/ a few things right now but it’ll do more than DLNA products do: IT’LL JUST WORK!