All the talk these days – at least before all the iPad 3 rumors took over – has been about the much anticipated Apple Television. Apple has certainly not announced anything, and some of us still are not convinced that Apple needs to enter a crowded market, but those rumors just keep on coming.

I’m one of those that just doesn’t see why Apple needs to bring a television to market, especially considering there are already hundreds of TV manufacturers in the space that are all scrambling for market share. If Apple is to make an impact, then it needs to offer something that nobody else can. Something that differentiates.

The Apple TV that we currently know and love is a sign that Apple doesn’t yet take the home entertainment business seriously. Famously called a “hobby,” the Apple TV is a box that is full of potential yet seems almost held back. Almost neutered…

But what if the Apple Television is the next step? For Apple to really make a go of the television game, then it needs to offer something that not only cannot be found in the TV market, but also something that cannot be achieved by simply hooking a $99 box up to an existing TV set. Something that goes beyond the Apple TV.

All that setup has us here, the point at which I sit back and contemplate just what Apple could have up its sleeve that couldn’t simply be rolled into an Apple TV3.

The obvious thing is Siri. While software, Siri obviously needs a microphone in order to work, something that the Apple TV currently lacks. While it is indeed possible to add a mic to a set-top box and release an Apple TV3, the thing will have to be small and with boxes like that usually tucked away in cabinets the chances of the whole thing working are minimal.

If the mic was sat behind the bezel on a 50-inch TV though, then things suddenly get a little more interesting.

FaceTime is something else that could not be done without hardware not available in an Apple TV. We’ve all seen the cameras in iMacs and the like, and Apple putting a larger version of that inside a TV bezel is not wild idea. FaceTime on a large television is something that could actually get people using the ailing video chat format, too.

Talking to your TV a la Kinect and holding video calls on a screen that fills a wall could potentially see the Apple Television having a pull that a standard TV could not. Throw in the whizz-bang software that we all know Apple would want to put out and the idea suddenly becomes interesting.

Whether Apple should take the risk of entering yet another market though, I’m still not convinced.

  • Seems like it would be a good idea to have the iTV3. The fact that all of those things come from all other apple iDevices is spectacular. With that idea Apple could make quite a large sum of money.

    • Anonymous

      It will never be called the “iTV3”, fact, I don’t care how much money Apple have or how powerful they think they are they will never be allowed to use that name.

      • Doug Petrosky

        It could be call that if they simply purchase the rights to the name. I don’t know why they would care to do that but never say never.

      • Doug Petrosky

        It could be call that if they simply purchase the rights to the name. I don’t know why they would care to do that but never say never.

  • Anonymous

    Maybe the Apple TV has been “neutered” purely to make room for the possible upcoming Apple Television?

  • Anonymous

    I made a FaceTime call with an iPhone 4S and mirrored the screen to my Apple TV.

    That looked awesome!!!

  • I personally think that there is more potential in the apple TV that they haven’t meet yet, like possibly making it so that applications could be accessed on there and more space so that a person could buy movies and other media and have it be able to save across the other iOS devices. Even maybe make a network/channel of its own, with exclusive shows and such. Having an Apple television is a nice concept just I think they should explore all avenues with the Apple tv box first before they venture into something else.

  • I would like an ATV that would allow you to access any Mac on your network. Then, it basically becomes an additional computer that allows you to surf the net, access files, view YouTube, Netflix, etc.

  • I also fear this television will be a flop. I can’t imagine how Apple will revolutionize the television set, especially without Steve Jobs.

  • Anonymous

    Knowing Apple, they might not have a camera in the first Apple Television, then when they announce Apple Television 2, they will include FaceTime and it will be “revolutionary”

    • Doug Petrosky

      No, Djterm has the right idea. I’ve done it my self and it works better for home video conferencing to have a mobile camera. Aka your iPhone mirrored to the TV.

  • “Talking to the TV a la Kinect”? Don’t you mean Siri? I’m confused.

  • “Talking to the TV a la Kinect”? Don’t you mean Siri? I’m confused.

  • Apple TV is a perfect streamer. And in the future probably keeps being just a pefect streamer but in HD 1080. Siri? I dont think so… Facetime? I dont thinks so… Why? because the best microphone for Siri, the best camera for your Faceme and the best keyboard is your own iPhone or iPad. For me, the best a simple streamer I’ve had!

  • Anonymous

    Apple tv would be complete for me right now if they could get apps for it. Doesn’t seem far. In the mean time I love my xbmc with icefilm, navi-x for streaming live HBO and mirroring FaceTime on my big screen!