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Real Artists Ship, eventually: Apple TV upgrade slightly delayed

apple tvWant to rent a movie through Apple TV? Not so fast.  Steve Jobs promised the Macworld faithful the necessary software update enabling the functionality would be ready by the end January.  Turns out, however, January is over and “it’s not quite ready.”

For the few million Apple TV owners, the rental functionality and other software adjustments should be available within a week or two.   Apple didn’t provide a reason when announcing the delay.

It’s not the first time Apple TV has had a go-to-market hiccup.   The initial launch was also delayed.  It comes down to philosophy.  Despite the urban legend that Steve Jobs pushes immovable deadlines and plays task master to engineers with the mantra “real artists ship,”  Apple’s modern slogan is more like “real artists take the time to ship quality.”   Apple has proven more than once that they are willing to alter a self-imposed but public deadline if doing is necessary to make sure a product is finished to their satisfaction.

The brief delay to the upgrade should have little measurable impact.  More importantly, their Macworld feature product, the Macbook Air laptop, is on track.  The ultra thin computer began shipping Wednesday.    

[Metue Editors note: The phrase “real artist’s ship” has been frequently attributed to both Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.  The quotation has been cited so many times, in fact, that, like Kurt Vonnegut’s supposed MIT commencement speech, which was actually written by Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich and never read from a graduation podium, the slogan is now urban legend.]


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