Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s rumored iTV has been a hot topic in recent months, and now those rumors are likely to heat up even further in the wake of Microsoft’s unveiling of the Xbox One. So does Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) have an answer for the new Xbox?

Apple TV

Microsoft’s Xbox One Is A Game Changer

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s new console is about more than just gaming, which may be one of the challenges for the company in changing the mindset of consumers. The Xbox 360 has had many features which made it a great set-top box for those wanting to stream video in addition to playing games, but this was not something Microsoft really focused on.

The key is going to be in changing the way consumers view the company’s products, and I think Microsoft has made some headway in this area, although it still has quite a ways to go. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), on the other hand, is already known for its consumer products, although Microsoft has a head start on moving into the television area.

Apple TV Vs. Apple iTV

The Apple TV set-top box has been around for a few years and hasn’t changed much in all that time, so many are wondering whether the next version of it will be something else entirely, like an iTV which has everything built into it. ABC News reporter Joanna Stern points to a quote from Steve Jobs in Walter Isaacson’s biography of him.

“I’d like to create an integrated television set that is completely easy to use. It would be seamlessly synced with all of your favorite devices and with iCloud.”

That pretty much describes Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Xbox One, although it’s a set-top box rather than a television set. But that set-top box turns almost any television set into a smart TV, eliminating the need to run out and buy a new TV if you want the smart integration but don’t want to spend as much as it costs to buy a television set.

Apple Or Microsoft In The TV Race?

The technology world is largely a race, although it isn’t always the company which gets to the finish line first that wins. What consumers will have to answer is whether buying a whole new television set is worth the truckload of cash Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is going to charge.