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What manner of witchcraft is this? Surely it appears to be the devil’s work when an enterprising developer manages to port the Apple TV interface to his iPod touch -- before the new box even hits store shelves.
TUAW is reporting on the hackery of developer Dustin Howett, who has cleverly taken the interface from the new Apple TV box and got it up and running on his iPod touch. As it turns out, the magical feat wasn’t all that difficult, especially now that the ATV is running a form of iOS 4.1, as discovered from the firmware Apple posted on Tuesday.
The new Apple TV interface is called “LowTide,” which is essentially an updated version of the FrontRow software running on older ATV boxes. The big difference is that LowTide was written using iOS 4.1, meaning that it’s also capable of running on Apple’s mobile devices -- namely the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.
As you can see from the YouTube video embedded below, Howett managed to extract LowTide from the Apple TV firmware made public yesterday and get it up and running on his iPod touch. Of course, it’s not an ideal experience, given the smaller screen size, but it’s fairly amazing to see that it works at all.
So how did Howett make the magic happen? “Extracting frameworks from the iPhone’s ‘dyld’ cache system was not enough to get the app to run (an approach I initially tried),” explains TUAW’s Erica Sadun. “Instead, you need to use caches native to Apple TV, which is the approach Howett used.”
Sadun warns that it’s not for the faint of heart: “This is a Bad Thing to do if you plan on using your device for anything but a candidate for restoring your firmware after getting everything to work. Seriously… unless you are utterly devoted to the thrill of being among the first to have Apple TV software running on your iPod or iPhone, you will not want to have to go through the steps of a full software restore afterwards.”
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter
(Video courtesy of TUAW)