According to reporting by Bloomberg News this afternoon, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is planning to announce a new Apple TV set-top box in April, and is presently in negotiations with Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC) and other partners to provide content for the device that will plug directly into a TV. While Apple would like to unveil the device in April, Bloomberg is citing two unnamed people close to the matter saying that the device would go on sale in time for the holiday season.

Why the delay in Apple TV’s launch?

Those plans would be subject to change based on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s intention to secure multiple content partners before the device reaches the public. The device will have a faster processor than the present Apple TV and a much needed revamp on the interface that would allows easier navigation between movies, TV shows, and other content. If Apple is able to secure a deal with Time Warner, it would mark the first such deal with a cable or satellite provider.

Apple tv

When contacted by Bloomberg, Tom Neumayr, a spokesman for Cupertino, California-based Apple, declined to comment, as did Marueen Huff, a spokeswoman for New York-based Time Warner Cable.

Given Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s slowing sales and profit in recent quarters, CEO Tim Cook has hinted at, almost promised, that 2014 would be a year full of new innovations from Apple. It’s believed that Apple will release a smartwatch this year in addition to this reworking of Apple TV.

The negotiations

It’s believed that the negotiations with Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC) have been going on since the middle of last year and, if completed, would give users access to a wealth of programming. Presently, users are limited to individual channel apps that include, ABC, ESPN, HBO, PBS, Disney and others. However, accessing this content often means that users have to prove that they are existing subscribers to these channels. This has been a headache for both users and Apple, often users must individually login and provide a password for this content. While Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has tried to streamline this process, Comcast and DirecTV have both balked at allowing users to simply use an Apple ID in the interest of keeping their data separate from Apple’s.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will face existing competition for its new set-top box from Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Xbox One as well as products from Roku., Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has been rumored to be working on its own device for some time as well.