Talking tech since 2003

It may finally be the Apple TV’s time, according to reports from the NYT’s Bits blog and 9 to 5 Mac. Early this morning, Apple’s online store went down and later came up with an entire section dedicated to the Apple TV. In addition to that, there’s talk that a major refresh is coming for Apple’s streaming box, which until this point has largely been a “hobby” for the company.

The move to shine some spotlight on the Apple TV is interesting, no doubt. For a while, the company had rarely mentioned the product in its keynotes and, until today, the Apple TV has actually been located inside the iPod section of Apple’s online store. It was tough to stumble upon it by accident, that’s for sure.

apple-tvBreaking the Apple TV out into its own store section could be a sign that Apple is ready to update the product from its hobby status to something more significant. The other store sections are Mac, iPad, iPhone and iPod, four very well-established product lines for Apple; making this change was no accident. Could this be the new product category Apple’s getting into this year, even though this product has technically been around for years?

A major refresh in the hardware department would give Apple a reason to push the Apple TV as though it’s a brand new device. And according to that 9 to 5 Mac report, some serious hardware changes could be on the way. For starters, Apple may merge the Apple TV and AirPort Express products into one device, essentially turning the streaming box into a wireless router (and vice versa). There’s also been talk that Apple was testing an Apple TV with a TV tuner so that users could watch TV using an Apple user interface. And lastly, games; it appears Apple’s latest Apple TV may put more of an emphasis on gaming, though how it would do so isn’t quite nailed down yet.

It’s definitely an interesting time to be an Apple TV owner, or at least someone interested in the product line. I personally feel that, if we see an update, it’ll come soon. And who knows; maybe we’ll finally get that Apple TV SDK at WWDC this year, allowing many developers to take advantage of the hardware for the first time.


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