Only Walt Mossberg's clout can muster up an Apple TV 10 days prior to its launch. So naturally, he and WSJ colleague Katherine Boehret were first-up with a review on Apple's initial living room sally. Their take? Well, they call the "beautifully designed, easy-to-use" Apple TV "classic Apple: simple and elegant." They tested on three Macs and three PCs (yes, running Vista too) running iTunes and successfully streamed data without stuttering over both 802.11n (as you'd hope) and even 802.11g WiFi. Oh sure, there were limitations: for example, you can't control the volume with Apple's remote and only trailers and "previews" of iTunes Store content can be streamed directly from the Apple TV interface. Although Walt expects the latter to change via a "software update" to give users the ability to stream or download a variety of content (like Google Video?) direct from the Internet. Oh, and what about that USB port on the back; that's for slinging additional disk capacity right? Nope, it's apparently only for service and diagnostics. Shame. Still, the Apple TV "worked great" for moving media off the home PC and onto the big (television) screen. As such, Walt and Co "can easily recommend it for people who are yearning for a simple way to show on their big TVs all that stuff trapped on their computers."
Update: The Walt and "Katie" video review is now available after the break.