Apple Plans To Simplify TV With Internet Live Streaming, iPad-Like Interface, Social Integration [Report]


Until Apple can get the cable companies to play ball, its TV set will remain a rumor.
Until Apple can get the cable companies to play ball, its TV set will remain a rumor.

Yesterday The Wall Street Journal shed some light on Apple’s future plans for the TV, noting that the company was in talks with cable providers to offer live broadcasts through an Apple set-top box. The report also alluded to the possibility of an Apple-branded HDTV.

Tonight The Journal published a follow-up report that adds more details to yesterday’s story, including the not-so-surprising revelation that Apple wants to greatly simplify the overall TV viewing experience.

According to the report:

Apple’s vision for a new device that can be used as a set-top box includes features designed to simplify accessing and viewing programming and erase the distinction between live and on-demand content, people briefed on Apple’s plans said.

The Cupertino, California-based company proposes giving viewers the ability to start any show at any time through a digital-video recorder that would store TV shows on the Internet. Viewers even could start a show minutes after it has begun.

Like the current Apple TV set-top box, Apple’s plans for the future interface is said to look much like the iPad, with rows of icons representing various services and channels. We’re sure that whatever Jony Ive and co. are working on is vastly better than the UIs that currently ship with TV sets.

This future TV device would also integrate with social networks like Twitter, according to The Wall Street Journal. Apple also wants users to have full access to any show they subscribe to, meaning that all episodes would be available for streaming. There’s still a ton of deals to be made with media companies and operators in Hollywood, but if anyone can make it happen, it’s probably Apple.

Source: The Wall Street Journal