There’s much to like about Apple TV, especially the option to share music, movies, videos, and photos from iPhone to iPad using AirPlay. What many Mac users didn’t know is that the Mac can also play on Apple TV. What the Mac does not do well is stream movies to Apple TV (it’s a cumbersome setup at best).
Beamer fixes what Apple neglected.
Beamer works like a movie app that manages almost any kind of movie file, lets you create playlists, works with HD movie, and will stream BluRay and DVDs from Mac to Apple TV (including subtitles). Even better, Beamer doesn’t just use the screen mirroring in OS X. It’s actually a video playback system that delivers the highest quality video, including 5.1 surround sound.
The user interface in Beamer couldn’t be much simpler to get started. Just drag and drop a movie file onto Beamer and playback to your Apple TV and connected television begins.
If subtitles are embedded in the movie, Beamer finds them and can display them automatically based upon your settings. Because Beamer is a Mac app it works with the Apple Remote so you don’t have to get up and bang on the keyboard to watch movie.
The Playlist management option lets you queue up movies to watch in succession. Beamer is very Mac-like in design in that it ‘just works.’ It’s not loaded with superfluous features. Install it. Point it to Apple TV. Play whatever movies you have on your Mac. And, speaking of movie files, there’s a healthy list of file formats that won’t play well with iPhone or iPad, but work fine on the Mac (AVI, MKV, MOV, MP4, WMV, FLV to start).
We’re still waiting for Apple to come up with a full-fledged television product that goes beyond Apple TV, has movie and TV show DVR-like capability and file management, and, of course, is built-in (either to Apple TV or the Mac).