by Brent Dirks
January 28, 2014
The rumored, new Apple TV is shaping up to be quite an upgrade. While the device will reportedly feature dedicated gaming support, 9to5Mac is chiming in with even more information. Interestingly, the site says that Apple has considered combining the Apple TV with its popular AirPort Express. And tested prototypes contain an integrated 802.11ac router. The reason for the router seems to be related to video quality and other factors:
Although our sources were inspecific (sic) on the reasoning behind this, it’s likely that video quality and stability would be improved versus older versions of the device, which have needed to connect to a separate wireless router, often in another room. Putting everything in one box could make the overall experience simpler, while allowing the router to deliver peak video performance for the Apple TV and de-prioritizing other wireless traffic as necessary.Also, Apple has been testing versions of the product with a built-in TV tuner so users can control their current cable box. That would allow viewers to see an Apple interface on top of the existing television content. The site says that current iOS devices can be used as controllers with the new device’s standalone gaming functionality. But current iOS 7 controllers that connect via Bluetooth, like the Stratus Wireless Gaming Controller, should also be compatible. Finally, the site does note that with the recent changes to Apple’s online store, the Apple TV is promoted as a full product line just like other devices including the iPhone, iPad, and Mac. The pictured new section offers accessories for the device, a community Q&A section, and certified refurbished devices.