The Kanex ATV Pro is a dongle-based solution for displaying the content from an AppleTV (ATV) at most TIC sites on Purdue's main campus. The only video/audio out available on an ATV is HDMI, which is currently not compatible with most classrooms which use VGA. The Kanex ATV Pro is an unpowered dongle that converts the HDMI out from the AppleTV into a VGA connection and an audio line out. This means that when using the dongle, an ATV can be hooked up at a standard TIC site as if it were a laptop using the supplied VGA and audio connectors.
The dongle itself is not cheap ($59.99), but it was recommended by the Apple reps as a connector solution currently not offered by Apple itself. Its main benefit is that it is able to convert the digital signal from the ATV to an analog VGA signal without needing another power source. In our research, most of the competing dongles needed to be plugged into an outlet in order to function. A few sites also sell simple HDMI>VGA connectors that do not convert the signal from digital to analog. These will probably not work with TIC sites around campus.
What's the big deal about AirPlay?
It's true that you can directly connect your Mac laptop or iPad to TIC sites using Apple or 3rd party dongles. However, these are wired solutions, meaning that you will be tethered to the instructor station, only having the length of your cable as your space to work with. AirPlay, on the other hand, allows you (or your students) to project the screen of your Mac or ATV through the projector from anywhere in the classroom giving you more freedom of movement and collaboration.
Please note: In order for AirPlay to work with an ATV, you will need to either be in a specific room set up for ATV or run AirPlay through a personal hotspot (such as through a smart phone). The connector described in this document will only allow you to run the ATV output through the projector.