Another Month, Another Rumor: Apple’s Next Apple TV Will Be a Television (Uh, Maybe Not)

Last May it was the compact, iOS-based $99 Apple TV adapter that was rumored to soon be unveiled. This month is fueling the rumors that an actual TV running iOS will eventually make an appearance to compete with Google TV. The funny thing is… when you look at the article excerpt blogs are referencing (shown in bold below) in context, it really only sounds like Apple TV, as we’ve come to know it, will be ported to iOS and get a refreshed user interface similar to other iDevices (and I’ll add: possibly with App support and new iTunes “cloud” integration). Read it for yourself below and chime in with your thoughts. Could it just be wishful thinking (again) by Apple fans for an Apple-branded TV set or does Apple plan on blindsiding the competition? Steve Jobs reiterated at the D8 Conference last month that Apple TV was still just a hobby for the company.

According to several people familiar with Apple’s television-related efforts, the company is working on an update to its television software, and will offer a completely redesigned interface for it. These people refused to be identified because they are not authorized to speak publicly about Apple’s upcoming products. And company officials declined to comment about any plans for the Apple TV or for other television-related products.

But the people familiar with Apple’s television efforts offered some details. They said it was not clear whether the company would create an entirely new product as well as update the software. They also said Apple might base a new television design on its iOS operating system, which is on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

One person familiar with the company’s newly hired employees said Apple has recently hired several user interface and graphics designers who have a background in broadcast design for television.

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Filed in: Industry Buzz, Software, Streaming Media Devices