Apple's plans to reinvent the way we enjoy entertainment in the living room are being pushed back another year, a new report claims.
Apple has decided to shelve plans to launch a new Apple TV set-top box this year after facing negotiation troubles with cable and media companies, Bloomberg is reporting today, citing sources. Chief among the disputes is how software would be implemented in the new device.
The companies also can't reach a deal on whether the box should be sold directly to consumers or offered through cable providers, Bloomberg's sources say.
The Apple TV set-top box has long been viewed as a "hobby" product that fails to deliver the more sophisticated features customers are after. The current Apple TV costs just $99 and offers no onboard storage. All programming is streamed through iTunes, or through a relatively small number of available apps, including Netflix and Hulu Plus.
According to Bloomberg's sources, Apple has been developing a far more capable set-top box for years. That device, the news outlet's sources say, would deliver a seamless experience for watching both live and recorded programming.
Last month, the Wall Street Journal cited sources who said that Apple has been in talks with cable operators to get a powerful Apple TV set-top box off the ground. That device, the Journal's sources say, would replace the TiVo or leased cable boxes customers are running in their living rooms right now.
However, in order for that device to launch, cable and media companies need to play nice -- an activity they don't typically engage in with technology firms.
All of this talk of a set-top box, however, has been overshadowed by hopes that Apple will eventually launch a television. The late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson that he wanted "to create an integrated television set that is completely easy to use" and that he had "finally cracked" the code that would allow his company to achieve that. Rumors continue to swirl that the television is still in the works.
Apple declined CNET's request for comment on the report.