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Revamped Apple TV may be delayed until 2015, report claims

Apple TV

1 August 2014

With Apple executives touting the most exciting lineup of new products in 25 years, one product due for a major upgrade is Apple’s long-adored hobby: the Apple TV.

For some time now, rumours have been circulating that Apple has been prepping to deliver a majorly revamped update to the Apple TV sometime in late 2014. What’s more, and in light of Apple’s November 2013 acquisition of PrimeSense, some credible reports have claimed that the upgraded set top box will feature Kinect-like functionality out of the box. Translation? The Apple TV will be much more than a conduit for television shows and movies, it will also double as a game console.

But a report from The Information claims that negotiation hurdles with cable companies like Comcast may unfortunately delay the planned rollout.

Apple engineers who are working on aspects of the device have been told by their bosses not to expect a launch this year and are working off timelines that assume a launch next year, according to a person familiar with the plans. Apple employees have cited cable companies “dragging their heels” and the pending Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger as reasons the device and accompanying TV service haven’t launched.

Even more intriguing are sources within the TV industry who claim that things are being held up because “Apple bit off more than it can chew” as it pertains to securing the myriad number of rights needed to roll out the service they want to provide end users.

The report further claims that cable companies remain wary of ceding too much control to Apple and losing control much in the way that record labels lost some control in the music business following the big splash made by iTunes and the iPod.

While some users, and indeed some rumors, have championed the notion of Apple releasing an Apple TV with subscription options, such a product would be fraught with difficulties.

Yoni Heisler, Networkworld

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