Finally, a New Apple TV! (Probably!)

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It's seemed obvious for some time now.

Apple is moving on from the current-gen Apple TV.



First, they cut the price from $99 to $69.

That's substantial. That's not something Apple does lightly - they're trying to clear out old stock.

Then, as 9to5Mac reported today, shipping times for the AppleTV have gotten substantially longer.

That's another sign of an end-of-life Apple product - production has slowed, inventories are getting low, and they aren't able to meet demand quickly.

So, it seems likely we're getting an entirely new Apple TV at WWDC in June.

But what will Apple be giving us, other than the usual spec bump?

Here are some guesses:

1. HomeKit Hub

This has been widely reported/rumored.

It's possible that the new AppleTV will be the central hub for HomeKit home automation devices.

Given that we'll be a full year with NO news after HomeKit's introduction at WWDC 2014, this seems overdue.

I've got a Nest thermostat and Nest Protect CO2/smoke detectors, and it's unlikely that Google is going to let Nest play nice with HomeKit.

Still, I'd happily jump into Apple's home automation ecosystem (even in parallel with Nest) if they provide a compelling alternative.

2. Apple TV Service

We've seen a LOT of smoke on this one - time to see some fire.

Apple is reportedly creating a cord-cutter streaming TV service, including all major non-NBC/Comcast networks and HBO Now.

Something like SlingTV.

This could be pretty great - but I'm under contract with DirecTV and unlikely to change anything at the outset.

While I may never be a cord-cutter, it may make sense to scale WAY back on our cable package - keeping local channels (I'm not giving up my Cubs, and you simply need NBC) - and relying on the AppleTV for higher-end content like HBO and even ESPN.

3. Apple TV App Store / Game Console

This would be pretty huge.

Apple has been theoretically capable of doing this for some time now - you can pair a game controller to your iPad, and use AirPlay to play games on your TV set using AppleTV.

However, the dream of a straight-up Apple game console via AppleTV has never come to fruition.

Ship the AppleTV with a controller, open up an Apple TV App Store for games, and start counting your millions, Apple.

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