It seems that Apple is intending to release a 4K Apple TV in the near future, with the intention of launching an assault on the living room. The Californian mega-corporation believes that it can become the major player in front rooms across the world, and intends to do this with a new set-top box that delivers 4K resolution.

4k Apple TV
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4K Apple TV highlights

Aside from this increased screen resolution over previous Apple TV releases, the 4K Apple TV box will also have the ability to highlight live television content such as news and sport events. Sources close to Apple suggest that the new television product will launch alongside the iPhone 8 and next-generation Apple Watch at an event in September.

Bloomberg is already leading on the matter, and suggests that the 4K Apple TV will feature a faster processor, which will deliver 4K content rapidly. The financial publication cited sources close to the Cupertino-based company, who have naturally chosen to remain anonymous.

With the release date and apparent pricing of the iPhone 8 also having been leaked recently, it seems that Apple’s September extravaganza is really beginning to take shape. The iPhone 8 is expected to be particularly special this year, with Apple releasing a revolutionary redesign of the iconic smartphone in order to acknowledge its tenth anniversary.

4K mainstream

4K resolution delivers twice the viewing quality of 1080p high-definition video, and is becoming an increasingly mainstream part of the consumer electronics landscape. Netflix was one of the first sources of 4K content, but now television stations and video game console manufacturers are also coming on board with the technology.

According to rumors emanating from the 4K Apple TV leak, the consumer electronics giant is also currently working on an updated version of its TV app. This software first hit the public domain back in 2016, but Apple intends to release a version capable of aggregating programming from apps that deliver live streaming. This will obviously hugely increase the amount of content available on Apple TV.

TV challenges

Despite its dominant position in the mobile marketplace, Apple has yet to make the sort of impression on the television niche that it would have hoped for. Apple TV has been less successful than devices from Roku Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google in the United States, achieving approximately 15 percent market share according to a survey conducted by Parks Associates.

Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri had previously indicated that Apple TV sales had diminished during the 2016 holiday quarter, when compared to 12 months previously. Apple has also struggled to deliver a successful creative department, with the corporation failing to deliver the sort of scripted shows and video content that have been delivered by the aforementioned Netflix and Amazon.

The 4K Apple TV box is effectively an acknowledgement of the growing prominence of this screen technology in television sets. Sony, LG and Samsung all offer a wide range of 4K TVs, and mainstream cable operators are now increasing the quantity of the 4K content available. Thus, the apparent endorsement of the 4K Apple TV box is certainly not a massive surprise, and media had previously reported on this possibility in the recent past.

Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook had commented at a conference that Apple fans would “be hearing a lot more about tvOS later this year,” which referenced the Apple TV operating system. Clearly there is the intention to roll out a major new software update to accompany the 4K box. Cook also announced that the Amazon Prime video service will be supported by the Apple TV later this year, providing additional content for the service.

New Apple content

While unique content from Apple has been slightly thin on the ground, the company has also been working on producing its own material. New video series will appear on Apple Music in the near future, which include Planet of the Apps and Carpool Karaoke. Apple will also invest $1 billion in creating original video content, as the corporation looks to step up its creative endeavours.

With Apple hugely reliant on an iPhone range that is potentially stalling, the need for the company to diversify its revenue model has never been more urgent. iPhone sales declined for the first time over the last 12 months, and there is doubt among analysts that continual growth in the smartphone marketplace is sustainable.

Looking to move into other fields, Apple is currently working on an electric car, while the company was long linked with a physical television set, until this possibility was shelved. But the arrival of a 4K Apple TV box will be hugely welcome, and seems to underline the fact that Apple is looking to move into the televisual sphere in a big way.

Source: Bloomberg