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The Apple TV has enjoyed a moderate amount of success hitherto, but with Tim Cook famously labeling the device a mere hobby in his day as the Cupertino’s COO, it has always been felt a more noteworthy assault on the lucrative market would be forthcoming. Speculation concerning the future of Apple TV has been an almost ongoing debate, but this week, it has become an even hotter topic than usual. Just days ago, Xbox engineer Nat Brown stated his belief that an Apple TV opening itself up to third party apps could be a significant threat to traditional console gaming, and TechCrunch’s MG Siegler cites multiple sources suggesting this may be the case later this year.

In the report, he states:

I haven’t heard anything specific about the SDK, but the chatter about Apple’s broader television plans has been picking up. And if that chatter is to believed, something is happening this fall — likely late fall.

The details are, as frequently tends to be the case where Apple is concerned, scarce, and although the consensus seems to be that the new Apple TV movement could begin in a matter of months, this could change at the drop of a hat.

Whereas much of the rumors pertaining the future direction of Apple TV have frequently suggested it would be a connected TV effort, i.e. an actual television set as opposed to the current little black box, Siegler remains on the fence as to whether that will actually turn out to be the case. He doesn’t believe it makes much of a difference whether Apple does or whether it doesn’t, with the real clincher being the introduction of third-party Apps to the fold.

AirPlay Mirroring

Apple could either, by means of a future software update, revamp the current system, allowing the Apple TV as we know it to support third party apps, or come through with an entirely new piece of hardware. Whatever the case may be, it’s an exciting prospect to think that something of the App Store’s magnitude could be replicated in the living room, and with Siegler also suggesting an announcement some months prior to this purported Fall release, we may not have to wait too long (perhaps WWDC?) to find out what the fruit company has up its sleeve.

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