Catching On Quick (5/20/99)

How 'bout that QuickTime 4? Officially, it's still not even finished-- the version available for download is still a public beta. But that fact hasn't stopped plenty of interested media mavens from installing the pre-release software and having a blast. In fact, Apple just issued a press release claiming that QuickTime 4 has been downloaded over three million times since it was first made available a month ago. To us, that sounds like a pretty respectable adoption rate for technology that hasn't even reached 1.0 status.

The only thing that concerns us, frankly, is the comparative dearth of sites using QuickTime 4's live streaming capabilities. Based on what we've seen, QuickTime Streaming provides a better end-user experience than the competing RealVideo over both fast and slow connections, and despite Steve Jobs' assertion that the free Streaming Server is "attracting new 'Intercasters' every week" because it costs infinitely less than Real's solution, so far the only live QuickTime video feeds we've yet seen all originate from Apple's servers. And there's only so much BBC, Bloomberg, and HBO previews one can stand before going nuts.

But yeah, it's only been a month, and again, the software isn't even final yet, so we're not all that surprised that perhaps lots of semi-interested sites have held off; maybe they're just waiting for QuickTime 4.0v1 before they leap in. Now that Apple's made it public knowledge that there are over three million people using the QuickTime 4 beta, though, maybe those fence-sitters will decide to make the leap. Memo to Apple-- not that we're impatient or anything, but just ship it, already. What's the hold-up?

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From the writer/creator of AtAT, a Pandemic Dad Joke taken WAYYYYYY too far


The above scene was taken from the 5/20/99 episode:

May 20, 1999: QuickTime 4 is pretty darn popular for software that's not even really out yet. Meanwhile, the iMac slides out of the top five for April, even though Apple's doing lots better than they were a year ago, and now you can use your Mac to look for alien life-- but don't overlook the obvious clues...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 1548: Half Empty or Half Full? (5/20/99)   Is this the end of a Good Thing™? Ever since the iMac burst upon the scene last August and left a Bondi blue blur on the retail computer sales reports, Apple's cute 'n' round little powerhouse has consistently held its own by remaining somewhere in the top five of best-selling systems...

  • 1549: Right Under Your Nose (5/20/99)   It's definitely time to address an issue that many faithful viewers have raised time and time again over the course of the past couple of weeks, and it goes a little something like this: "Why hasn't AtAT mentioned the SETI@home project, now that a Macintosh client is available?...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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