According to new reports, Apple is finally getting ready to release a new Apple TV device capable of streaming 4K content. It’s a move that will finally bring Apple’s streaming device up to speed with the 4K-capable Chromecast Ultra, new Roku products, the Amazon Fire TV, and nearly every other competitor in the market.
Bloomberg reports Apple could launch its fifth-generation Apple TV as soon as this year, with support for “more vivid colors.” That improvement in color reproduction could be related to high dynamic range (HDR), a feature that is becoming popular on consumer 4K TVs.
Interestingly, the report suggests the new device isn’t going to be very exciting at all. Here’s Bloomberg:
Apple has essentially settled for turning the television set into a giant iPhone: a cluster of apps with a store. ‘That’s not what I signed up for,’ says one of the people, who requested anonymity to talk freely about internal company matters. ‘I signed up for revolutionary. We got evolutionary.’
The report suggests that Apple hasn’t revolutionized the Apple TV for a number of reasons. It describes Apple’s “handcuffs” to large profit margins that have prevented Apple from exciting new hardware, and tells the story of failed deals to bring Apple’s own streaming TV, or even cable TV, option to the box.
The October 2015 update of the Apple TV to the fourth generation added the A8 processor, Siri search, and the ability for the device to run apps rather than rely on pre-installed services. Apple released tvOS 10 in September 2016 for the $149 USD device.