Apple TV Surprises: Four Unexpected Features

The Apple TV has become a playground for tech enthusiasts, offering a robust version of OS X tailored for the device, complete with wireless capabilities and a host of unexpected features. Here’s a glimpse into some of the more surprising elements you might stumble upon within the Apple TV’s system:

  • Internet Explorer favorites. A nostalgic feature, the path /Users/frontrow/Library/Preferences/Explorer contains a list of Apple-centric websites that dates back to 2003.

  • Perl. The device is equipped with a complete Perl 5.8.6 installation, ready to handle any scripting tasks you might want to execute.

  • Screen capture. Located in /usr/sbin, the screencapture utility allows users to take screenshots, which are saved under the frontrow user account.

    For example, using the command /usr/sbin/screencapture -tjpeg ~/applelogo.jpg will save a screenshot as a JPEG.

  • Sounds. Standard system sounds like Basso, Frog, Pop, and Sosumi are found in /System/Library/Sounds. These can be played using VLC or QuickTime Player, sounding just as they do on other Apple devices.

    To use them as alerts on the Apple TV, you’d need to transfer over the System Preferences application.

These features highlight the Apple TV’s versatility and its appeal to those who enjoy tinkering with technology.

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Matthew is a dedicated writer for TUAW, bringing insightful and engaging content to Apple enthusiasts around the world. With a deep love for all things Apple, Matthew covers everything from the latest iPhone and iPad releases to MacBook innovations and Apple Watch updates. His articles are known for their clarity and depth, making complex tech topics accessible to everyone. When he’s not writing, Matthew enjoys exploring new apps and testing out the latest Apple gadgets.